6 Things You Need to Know About FSBO in Florida
1. Staging Your Home
The interior and exterior design process enacted to entice potential buyers is referred to as staging a home. Owners must address the aesthetics, flow, and energy the home gives off. The aim is to create an attractive, pleasing appeal for listing photographs and home tours. You want the house to have a warm, inviting atmosphere.
Exterior, Landscaping, Curb Appeal
Staging your Florida home begins with the desirability of the outside, also known as curb appeal. The potential buyer must have an exceptional first impression. Have a walk around the house and examine the exterior looking for any eyesores. Take notes on any areas that may need to be addressed, including the front entryway, sidewalks, landscaping, backyard, and any fencing. Be sure also to check the roof, decks, and house numbers. They should be clean and clear. Fix any shedding paint on the exterior. Identify all repairs, cleaning, and replacements necessary, get them all taken care of before listing your home for sale. To be as thorough as possible, do several walkabouts on the property, drive the block a few times, and enlist a second set of eyes to catch anything you might have missed.
Once all the cleaning, repairs, and replacements are done, look at outdoor furniture and decorations. Create symmetry with placement and warmth with lighting. Situate comfortable furniture in such a way that encourages visitors to take a seat and stay awhile. Accentuate furniture pieces with containers filled with flowers and plants. Install landscape lighting. This is not only terrific for ambiance but ensures security as well. Quality solar lights are an alternative to complicated lighting that needs wiring. Depending on your budget, for extra curb appeal, add iron gates, arbors, fence panels, art pieces, or bird baths for additional charm. Ensure any shed or outdoor storage spaces are organized and decluttered inside, plus well cared for on the exterior. Because of the year-round warm weather, for sale by owner Florida homes must accentuate outdoor living spaces.
Interior, De-Clutter, Clean, Re-arrange
Staging the interior of a home starts with cleaning and decluttering. Walk around the house, take notes on any areas that need extra attention and any needed repairs. Deep clean the entire house, including light fixtures, appliances, baseboards, and the ceiling, make sure every inch of the house is spotless and shining. Depending on your budget, you could consult a cleaning company. Be sure to communicate precisely the kind of deep clean you need and what areas need extra attention. Get rid of clutter. Sort through all your belongings, throw out, donate, or give away anything you do not need. Before starting the deep clean, make sure you have all the cleaning tools needed, work with what you already have. Start from the top, looking for any cobwebs in corners, and then work your way down. If you have pets, make sure to eliminate any evidence of them living there.
Once the house is spotless, have a look at the interior design flow. Less is more. Remove any surplus of furniture. Rooms should feel spacious, open, and free-flowing. Get rid of all clutter from shelves, countertops, and tables. Depersonalize the space, take away photographs, certificates, and diplomas. Opt for universal artwork, books, and pieces. Pull furniture away from the walls in groupings of 3 that feel natural and inviting. Ensure specialty features such as built-in shelves, wine storage, or breakfast nooks are unobstructed, conveniently open, and easy to access. Put yourself in the shoes of the potential buyer. Walkthrough the home, the flow needs to feel effortless, with no roadblocks. Pop accent color or shine with pillows, plants, bowls of fruit, curtains, or art displays. Many people are now working from home, so make sure there is an operational home office. If an entire room isn't available, use a portion of a room, nook, or outdoor space. Light the house up with additional lamps if needed.
2. Get Professional Photography
With more buyers turning to the internet to search for new homes, professional photography is required to grab potential buyers' attention. Get clear on what you want and what your budget is. Once the house is meticulously prepared, it is time to find a top-notch photographer. Get a recommendation from a trusted family member, friend, neighbor, or co-worker. Ask around your network. If you are using a realtor to buy a home, ask if their office has a list of preferred photography vendors.
Search For A Phenomenal Photographer
If you cannot get a recommendation, search online for real estate photographers near you, sort them by highest ratings and reviews. If they have a website, confirm their ability to capture the architectural essence of the interior and exterior by their portfolio. Look at pricing to make sure they offer what you'd like within your budgeted range. Once you've done the research, contact the top 2 or 3 to set up interviews. Request resumes and portfolios ahead of time. Please make sure they are reputable, professional, skilled, and offer what you are looking for. Ask them how long it will take to receive the photographs. Get it all in writing. In 2020 and into 2021, people are beginning their home buying searches online. Consider using a photographer who includes things like digital flyers and virtual tours.
Tell The Story of Your Home
Generally, it's best to have at least 20 to 30 photographs. Ask what time of the day will be best for lighting. Be sure to catch any detail you may have missed in the cleaning, decluttering, and staging. Be sure the photographs have a watermark or signature from the photographer to help deter scam artists from stealing them online. Have the photographer tell the story of your home visually. List the photos in order of how you'd experience the home for the first time from stepping up to the front door.
3. Marketing, Advertise on Websites
The home is staged to perfection, and you have breathtaking photos. So what's next? Use the Home Valuation tool to determine a listing price. After that, it is time to create a marketing strategy. If the photographer could not provide you with a flyer, you will need to create one for digital and for print., you will need to create a digital and print flyer. Include photographs, listing price, square feet, number of beds and baths, a detailed description, and your contact information. If you have Microsoft suites, flyers can be made through Publisher. Canva and similar websites feature many templates ready to use, just plug in your pictures and information. Send it out to all of your email contacts, and post it on your social media accounts. Make sure you let everyone know your house is for sale. It is common for FSBO homes in Florida to be sold to a family member or friend. Schedule an open house. Find an esteemed well regarded local mortgage brokerage to help advertise. Additionally, post your home on all the real estate websites such as For Sale By Owner, Zillow, and Trulia.
Think about getting your home on your county's MLS, multiple listing service. Only licensed realtors are allowed to enter a listing on the MLS. Oftentimes realtors will do this for a flat fee amount of money. It will then be listed but specified as a "for sale by owner". The MLS is a sure-fire way to get your home listed in front of as many potential buyers as possible.
4. Brush Up on Negotiation Skills
Be prepared to negotiate before you start to receive offers. You are solely responsible for the discourse once a buyer places a bid. Negotiations will include the sale prices, terms, and any contingencies. Both the seller and the buyer can request specific contingencies or things that need to happen for the sale to go through. For instance, the buyer could ask that the home passes an inspection before the deal closes. Get a clear, concise, realistic idea of what you want in the deal. Know exactly what you are willing to be flexible on and what you are not.
Read, Research, Review
5. Get an Offer
6. Understanding Contracts, Addendums, and Disclosures
Contract, Necessary Documents
Get familiar with the paperwork necessary to complete a home sale. For FSBO sellers in Florida, the FAR/BAR "As-Is" contract is the ideal option. You can make certain of this by checking that the bottom of each page says Florida Realtors (FAR) / Florida Bar (BAR) -AS-IS with the current year next to it. Practice due diligence by combing through the contract, reading the entire thing. Confirm the names are correct for both you and the buyer and verify that the price and closing date are accurate. Make sure the dates and stipulations are clear on the financing contingency, inspection, and title and survey. Everything should be overly communicated, down to any personal property included or excluded in the sale. In addition to the signed and dated final page of the contract, each page should be initialed at the bottom by both you and the buyer. In Florida, the seller is required to reveal any known defects on the property. There is a Sellers Property Disclosure addendum that only the seller can fill out. Another important addendum would be the Lead-Based Paint Disclosure, necessary if the house was built before 1978. Have a look at all of the Florida Real Estate Forms to see if there are any other necessary pieces of paperwork. Remember, it is always best to have an attorney look it all over.
Additional For Sale By Owner Florida Expenses
It is necessary to note a few lesser-known expenses when selling a home FSBO in Florida. The seller is responsible for paying prorated property taxes for the amount of time the seller lived in the home this year. In Florida, there is also a Documentary Stamp Tax that differs from county to county.
Capital Gain Taxes
There may be capital gains taxes, depending on how much the home has appreciated since ownership. There are a few exceptions, like if you have resided in the property for at least 2 years. There are opportunities for exceptions on a rental property through section 1031. Also, a property depreciation tax break permits investors to deduct depreciation from an investment property from their taxable income.