Review the process: It is not at all uncommon for seniors to have been living in their home for 30 or more years. For this reason, the legal and logistics issues associated with selling their home are probably unfamiliar and somewhat daunting. Be sure to review the process in detail and provide plenty of time to address questions that are sure to arise.
Explain the buyer’s point of view: If your client hasn’t moved in quite some time, they may need to be educated about what makes a home attractive in today’s market. Not only have tastes changed, but todays buyers often prefer to buy a fully updated, move-in ready home. Provide guidance as to what bring buyers in and what makes them walk so your senior clients can prepare accordingly.
Review the showing process: Be specific about what buyers expect to experience when visiting an open house and find out how much time your clients will need to prepare for a showings. If your client cannot manage this easily, consider customizing the plan to accommodate the circumstances.
Confirm your client’s availability: Be sure to know how your clients can best be reached to eliminate missed emails or playing phone tag. Even if a senior has a cell phone or an email address, this doesn’t necessarily mean they check them regularly. Knowing how and when to contact your client will help expedite the process and help things go more smoothly.
Explain the “hidden cost” of homeownership: Seniors often fail to realize that when they sell their home, they are also responsible for emptying it and leaving it clean. As their Realtor, it is suggested to make it clear early on to your client that they will have to bear the expense associated with emptying the house of anything that wasn’t specifically requested by the buyer.
Karen Menachof is a real estate agent and owner of Caring Transitions Rochester. Caring Transitions, founded in 2006, is the first national franchising concept specializing in senior relocation and transition services. With more than 200 locations throughout the United States all owned and operated by Certified Relocation and Transition Specialists, Caring Transitions provides clients with supportive moves, auctions, rightsizing and transitions.
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