What research should I do before I sell my home?

Before you sell your home, these are the things you should research:

  • Local real estate agents: Start searching for reputable real estate agents in the area. Ask friends, family, and colleagues if they have worked with anyone they can recommend. Be sure to research their recent sales and speak to some of them about their marketing style to make sure they align with your goals.
  • The market: Check out average home prices, how quickly homes are selling, historical data about pricing trends, and what types of properties are in high demand. If the market is cool and you can wait, you might want to hold off until the spring when things pick up. Or if the market is at its peak, you might want to forgo the home improvements you were planning and list as soon as possible.
  • Your home value: Estimate your home value using several home valuation tools. Ask a few agents how they would price your home. Don’t pick the agent who gives you the highest valuation—if their estimate is far from the others, that can be a red flag.
  • Value-add improvements: Research simple things you can do to increase the value of your home and the chances that it will sell quickly, such as painting, landscaping, refinishing cabinets, and new lighting fixtures.