Chicago Sellers Checklist

04/12/23  |  Julie Latsko

Follow these expert steps to make selling your Chicago home a success.

Whether you are planning to sell your Lincoln Park real estate or are dealing with River North condos for sale, having a checklist can help you stay organized and cover all the necessary steps. 

This blog will cover the essential preparatory steps for selling your home, including making repairs and improvements, getting professional photos and staging, and setting the list price. It will also discuss the importance of finding the right real estate agent to help you list your home and negotiate the best price with buyers.

Preparing your home for sale

As a home seller, there are several steps you can take to prepare your Lincoln Park real estate for sale. Start by decluttering and depersonalizing your home, which will help create a neutral space where buyers can imagine themselves living. Aspects such as decor, furnishings, and accessories should be selected thoughtfully to develop a sense of cohesion and purpose. 

High-quality photos and videos should also be taken of your home using professional equipment and lighting. Finally, it is essential to consider the target market when creating marketing materials and include details about the home's features and amenities.

Make necessary repairs

Before you even consider listing your Chicago home for sale, you will want to address any necessary repairs or renovations. This includes managing issues with the home's structure, such as replacing a broken window or fixing a leaky faucet. It can also include more significant issues such as updating electrical systems, addressing roof leaks, or tending to foundation cracks. All of these repairs will help your home look its best. Addressing these issues before listing your home will also increase its value and appeal to potential buyers.

Improve curb appeal

The exterior of your home is the first thing buyers will see during a showing, and that first impression is one of the most important you will make. Even if you are selling a condo, there are things you can do to help draw in potential buyers before they even enter.

Ensure your home's exterior is well maintained with freshly painted trim and a neat landscaping plan. Consider replacing broken furniture or fixtures and ensuring the walkways and driveways are free of cracks or weeds. You can also stage the front porch or entryway to give buyers a warm welcome when they arrive. Remember to pay attention to details, as something that you have become accustomed to — even a slight nick in the paint — may be what buyers focus on during a showing.

Consider professional home staging

Staging your home is an essential part of preparing it for sale. Staged homes often sell faster and for higher prices than non-staged homes. As a result, it is worth your time and effort to consult with a professional if you want to maximize the value of your home. 

A professional stager can help you declutter and make your home look its best by arranging furniture and decor to create an inviting atmosphere. They can also provide advice for showcasing your home's features. Finally, a professional stager can help you decide what to include in your home staging plan. Whether you are interested in selling quickly or hoping to land a higher asking price, the details will often make the difference.

Get professional visuals

High-quality visuals help capture the attention of buyers and can make a significant difference in the final sale price. Professional photographers and videographers who specialize in real estate are your best bet when it comes time to create visuals. Ensure that anyone you hire has experience with similar homes and real estate. Your real estate agent can be a fantastic resource in helping you to find the right professionals, as they likely either have someone on staff or who they regularly work with.

A professional photographer will take multiple shots from different angles and in different lighting conditions, capturing the best possible representation of your home. This helps potential buyers visualize themselves living in the space and makes them more likely to make an offer. Professional videographers and photographers will also have tools that others do not, such as licensed drones, that can help them to create stunning visuals of Lincoln Park real estate and the surroundings.

Setting a competitive list price

A competitive list price is essential when selling a home in Chicago. Beyond factors such as real estate market conditions, property condition, and value, consider any special circumstances that may impact the final selling price of your home. This could include recent renovations or upgrades to your property or other factors such as real estate taxes or insurance.

Research your home's value

When selling a property, it is crucial to understand the current market value of the property. You can start by looking at the recent sales of comparable properties near yours. However, this information alone may not tell you everything you know. That is why it is crucial to work with a real estate agent with the tools and data to accurately project what buyers will be willing to pay for your home.

Another tool that can help you decide on a listing price is a pre-sale appraisal. This will help you get an accurate figure of how much the property is worth, but a pre-sale appraisal will also include various reports, photographs, checklists, and environmental reports. It allows you to thoroughly understand the property and its current condition before putting it on the market. 

When discussing the listing price with your agent, ensure they know of any work you have done to the home. You will also want to note any recent renovations to the property that may affect the listing price. This may include new finishes, fixtures, or upgrades that affect the home's value.

Calculating repair and remodeling costs

If there are any repairs or remodeling that will need to be done before listing your Chicago home, you will want to include them in your pricing considerations. That includes structural repairs, painting, landscaping, or just updating appliances. 

Factors such as the age of your home, the condition of the fixtures and appliances, and any necessary renovations should be taken into consideration. You should also consider including the cost of staging your home for showings or open houses. It is perfectly sensible to make recouping the costs of marketing your home a part of your listing price calculations.

Finding the right real estate agent

When selling real estate in Chicago, it is essential to find a real estate agent familiar with the local market and laws governing home sales in Chicago. An experienced agent such as Julie Latsko will ensure you are getting the most bang for your buck while also making informed decisions about the sale of your home.