Home Sellers Guide


Home Sellers Guide – Lisa Duke Realty

Whether it’s your safe space where you can eat, sleep, and live in comfort, or a critical asset whose sale can give your future the kickstart it needs, your home is the most valuable asset in your possession. And just like any valuable asset, understanding its value and your responsibility in owning it (and potentially selling it) can require some professional help. If you are considering selling your home, Lisa Duke Realty is here to help you understand everything you need and provide the professional consultation you are looking for, with our Home Sellers Guide. Keep reading to learn the how’s and why’s of selling your home, and how our team of tprofessional realtors at Lisa Duke Realty can help.

Things to Consider

Regardless of your motivation for selling, or how sure or unsure you are of selling your home, there are a few things you should consider before you dive headfirst into the home selling process that you might not have thought of. Keep reading to get a bit more perspective on your housing situation, and what you should know before putting your house on the market.

Your Home’s Value on the Housing Market

One of the first and more obvious things that you have to consider before you sell your home is your current home’s value. As much as you can use your purchasing price as a good reference point, this little old thing called the housing market is a critical factor that essentially dictates most factors regarding your home’s value. The history of the U.S. housing market is spotted at best, but there are some important trends to consider if you want to effectively sell your home for what it’s worth (and maybe even a little more).

Mortgage Rates

(anchor “Mortgage Rates”)

Mortgage loans are an invaluable reference tool for home-buyers and home-sellers in the housing market. Currently, mortgage rates have fallen by over a full percentage point since Q4 of 2018 and are at near-historic lows, a trend that market experts believe will continue into 2020 and 2021. For home-owners, fluctuations in mortgage rates will impact your monthly housing costs, which could mean time for refinancing, or time for selling. For home-buyers, lower mortgage rates mean that more potential buyers will financially qualify for more homes. This could be a great market trend to take advantage of, especially for home-sellers looking to upgrade or downsize their next new home, but consult with your local trusted realtor to learn how mortgage rates will affect your home-selling situation.

Value of Good Home Equity

Other than being a somewhat convoluted housing factor to understand, having good home equity simply means you can get more money for the value of your home. Home equity is defined as the difference between the outstanding balance for all loans owed on the property and the home’s market value. According to ATTOM Data Solutions, over 25% of homes with a mortgage have 50% equity. Combined with the recent trend of accelerating housing prices, this means that homeowners who are able to pay off their mortgages earlier and increase their equity, can get a great value for their home when they make the transition into home-sellers.



What the Experts Say

No one can truly predict what the housing market will do (as the 2008 crash unfortunately shows us), but there is a lot of value in understanding an expert analysis of current housing statistics and trends, and how they will help forecast the future housing market. 

Mike Fartantoni, Chief Economist at MBA says “Moderating price growth allows household incomes to catch up with home values… this improvement in affordability – especially given the growing demand from first-time home buyers – will lead to more home sales.”

Ralph DeFranco, Global Chief Economist at ARCH, says “…builders have tended to focus on more expensive, higher-profit houses and less on replenishing low inventories of entry-level homes… low interest rates and a shortage of [entry-level] starter homes will continue to push up prices.”

According to the experts, it seems like the state of the current housing market is primed for ambitious home-sellers. While you can’t fully rely on expert forecasts, these market trends seem to point to a high demand for homes, with current buyers looking to take advantage of low mortgage rates and a smaller inventory of entry-level homes ready for selling. Combining this expert knowledge and analysis with your trusted local realtor is a great way to be a fully informed and prepared home-seller.

Is Your Home a “Starter Home”_

Is your home a starter home? For many Americans, the thrill and achievement of purchasing their first home is hard to be beat; they’ve saved money their entire lives for it, probably jumped through a variety of logistical and financial hoops, and cobbled together a mixture of loans, home-buyer incentives, and their own personal wealth just to afford a portion of it. As much financial and nostalgic value as this “starter home” might have for you, the reality is that it probably won’t be the home you live in for the rest of your life.

If the home you are looking to sell is your first-time home purchase, you’re already in a great selling position. According to the Home Price Index from CoreLogic, and a report from Zillow, home prices in the starter home market have gone up at a rate of 5.3% every year, while the inventory, or number of starter homes on the market, has dropped 9.4%. These two statistics are correlated, and the combination of these trends has increased asking price and demand for starter homes on the market. So if you are looking to sell your starter home, whether for a growing family or affordable downsizing, these trends mean you can benefit from the higher equity (from rising prices), a higher demand for your starter home, and a larger pool of buyers also searching for a start to their home-owning dreams. 

Timing is Everything

Chances are, if you are looking at our Home Sellers Guide, you are looking to sell your home sooner rather than later. As with many things in life, there is no time like the present. Due to a variety of different factors that we have reported on above, the number of current homes on the market, or housing “inventory” as it is referred to, is actually somewhat low. 

According to Existing Home Sales Report by the National Association of Realtors, the total housing inventory at the end of October 2019 was down 2.7% from September, and down 4.3% from October 2018. Regarding buyer versus sellers, a balanced market that provides a reflective amount of housing inventory for the amount of buyers in the market requires a 6 month inventory of homes for sale. The unsold housing inventory as of October 2019 was a 3.9 month supply — which means that we are in a heavy seller’s market. Combined with low mortgage rates and high housing demand, there has never been a better time to consider selling your house. Just make sure to have your trusted local realtor by your side when you do.

Know Before You Sell

So, you have considered your options, the market, and your own home value, and now you’re ready to sell,right? Well, that might be the case, but there are some things you should know about if you want to get the best bang for your buck, as well as a less stressful home selling process. Keep reading our Home Sellers Guide to learn some more tips and best practices for selling your Jacksonville home, or give your team of trusted local realtors a call.

House Pricing for a Quicker Sale

Just like for any seller on any market, understanding the value of your home asset and how to price it accordingly to the market is part of the secret recipe. Too low, and you lose a lot of potentially earned value from any sale, and too high, and you don’t get enough potential buyers interested. Pricing and listing visibility have an inverse relationship, meaning that the lower the price is, the more potential buyers will see it; it’s a bit of “Goldilocks” levels of pricing, where you are looking for the sweet spot of listing it at the highest possible price, while losing the least amount of potential buyers as possible. As much as housing prices have been slowly rising, this rising trend is slowing down, so instead of trying to “win” any sort of negotiation, you should make sure your listing is PTSI, or “priced to sell immediately” by maximizing the listing visibility and improving competition. Consider the price/visibility pyramid to the right, or give your trusted local realtor at Lisa Duke Realty a call.

Listing Tips and Tricks

  • Price It Right – As you can understand from our housing price tips above, the price of your home is critical. Ensure that your home is PTSI, or “priced to sell immediately”. The more visibility your listing has to potential buyers, the more traffic will be driving to your property, which will naturally increase interest in your home and ultimately the selling price too.
  • Prepare Your Home For Buyers – Some of the most important work a realtor does is staging your home. Cleaning your home, organizing or re-organizing your furniture, and staging specific rooms can allow for potential buyers to visualize their future in the home, and improve the overall sale price, and likelihood of a sale too.
  • Provide As Much Access as Possible – While it might not seem very consequential, the availability of access for a listing can make or break a listing. Sellers have to remember that buyers are looking for a new home within their busy schedules as well. The harder you make it for people to check out your home and give you their money, the less likely they will be willing to part with their money at your listing price, or any price at all. Consider a lockbox on the door, or open phone call access that caters to any potential buyer’s schedule.
  • Utilize a Trusted Realtor – As much as you can research and understand the housing market, and your home’s value within all that, nothing compares to professional boots-on-the-ground consultation. Your trusted local realtor, like one of the realty specialists from Lisa Duke, can provide the no-nonsense advice and understanding that you need to make an educated selling decision about your home.

Highest ROI Renovations for Your Home

One of the best ways you can improve the sale value on your home is through renovations. Renovations are almost always a smart move, as they improve the living experience for current residents, as well as improving the resale value for any potential future sale. However, renovations are typically not cheap, and in order to get the maximum financial benefit from them for your home, you need to consider the return-on-investment they provide to your total sale price. Below is a list of home renovations with the highest ROI on your home value, so consider one of these additions before listing your home!

  • Garage Door Replacement – A necessary home feature that provides function as well as aesthetic, you can get a 97.5% of cost recouped, for only spending an average of $3,611.


  • Stone Veneer – For the exterior of your home, installing stone veneer in place of vinyl sliding provides massive curb-appeal, recouping 94.9% on an average investment of $8,907.


  • Kitchen Remodel – While one of the more expensive renovations, it’s also one of the most highly-sought after, and can provide a quality ROI of 80.5% on an average cost of $22,507.


  • Wooden Deck Addition – For homes with a yard or expansion room, a wooden deck is a highly valued outdoor renovation, recouping up to 75.6% value on a $13,333 investment.


How Lisa Duke Realty Can Help You Sell Your Home

At Lisa Duke Realty, we are committed to providing the best advice, so you can get the best price for your home. It’s why we are committed to our customer satisfaction, and why we are proud to provide this Home Sellers Guide. But even with all of the resources and information you could ever have, selling your home is still a delicate and difficult process. That’s where our team of committed and experienced realtors comes in, to provide the resources and industry knowledge you need to get the best value for your home. Keep reading below to see how.


Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Professional

  • Experience – Probably the most important reason to hire a professional realtor is our experience. Most folks haven’t been on both sides of a house sale, and if they have, they have probably haven’t done it for their career like our team of realtors have. Utilize the experience and education of those who have it, especially for critical home-selling factors like market conditions and pricing.
  • Local Expertise – Considering the iconic real estate motto of “location, location, location”, the nuances and context of a local housing market and local real estate factors are a critical part of the home selling process. Even if you are moving within the same city, a team of professional realtors will be able to provide you with the local perspective and market information that you need to effectively sell or buy in your specific location. 


  • Negotiations – For such a substantial exchange of money and assets, your home selling process will involve a fair bit of negotiations. Why not utilize someone who acts as a mediator for these negotiations every day? Our realtors have the confidence and experience that you need in your corner when it comes to haggling over dollars, and will fight for the value and sum that you and your home deserve.
  • Contracts – The legal complexity and logistics of a home sale can be intimidating to say the least, and most of the process will involve a lot of reading and signing a variety of contracts and forms. Having a reliable realtor at your side can help you avoid any contractual traps, and ensure that you are protected as a seller.



  • Comfort – Selling or buying a home is an achievement that you can truly be proud of, but as much as you can achieve on your own, utilizing a professional realtor can minimize the stress of an already stressful situation. Instead of being concerned about deadlines, competitive pricing, and the fine print of real estate contracts, take advantage of the supportive safety net that a realtor can provide.


Home Selling with Lisa Duke Realty

Selling your home is a big decision, as well as a big task to undertake. But a successful home sale, with the right realty team of the right people, can kickstart your future and provide you with the logistical and financial freedom to pursue your dreams. That’s why our team of realtors at Lisa Duke Realty in Jacksonville are so dedicated to helping our clients; we understand how important this process is to you, and we will support and advise the listing and selling of your home as if it were our own. We hope that our Home Sellers Guide can provide the direction and information you need to get started on selling your home, but give us a call and let one of our professional realtors walk you through any process or terminology you need help with.


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