6 Steps to Selling Your Home in San Francisco

Six Steps to Sell Your Home for Top Dollar in San Francisco

Preparing a property for sale doesn’t have to be daunting. Small updates, guided by an agent you trust, can have a huge impact on the final sales price. Follow the steps below and you’re already well on your way. 


Tip #1: Weigh the Benefits of Selling Versus Renting 

San Francisco is one of the most expensive rental markets in the world, which makes renting out a former home an appealing option for many owners. Especially if you don’t need the equity from your home for your next purchase, renting provides a way to continue to hold onto your investment while moving on to a property that better fits your needs. 


But San Francisco has some of the country’s most onerous rental ordinances and costly missteps are surprisingly easy to make. Speaking with an experienced landlord-tenant attorney to learn the specific local rent and eviction restrictions affecting your property is essential before deciding to go this route. 


Also, keep in mind that holding onto a property could cost you money in the long term. Not only do renters reduce a home’s value over time, but keeping an old home could inhibit the new home purchase you could be making. You open yourself up to market fluctuation risks and additional commission payments if you end up buying a too-small property that becomes unsuitable for your family in less than five years. 


These are just a few of the factors to keep in mind when making the decision to rent or sell.


Tip #2: Choose the Right Agent

Once you decide to move forward with the sale, it’s time to pick an agent. But how? Every agent claims to be the best in their field, so it takes a little digging to determine which one is right for you. You’ll want to interview several real estate agents to make sure their attitudes and experiences align with your own, and to determine that they add value to the transaction. Even realtors within the same agency have different sales techniques, resources and neighborhood expertise that they bring to the table. 


In particular, having a realtor that understands the importance of an impressive, effective online presence is paramount. Over 50% of buyers find their home online, so an experienced online marketing team with a thorough understanding of how buyers use technology in the home search process will bring many new visitors to a property site, and the property itself


The quality of the agent working on your behalf—his or her competence, integrity, work ethic and commitment to your interests—can make an enormous difference in the outcome of the sale of your home. This doesn’t just mean money, but stress and time as well. 


Tip #3: Make Small Changes for Big Returns

A home is an investment, but it’s also where we live our lives and grow our families. For that reason, it can be difficult to see that the kitchen counter where our kids ate their breakfast every morning is out of date; or that the designer wallpaper we love in the dining room is too taste specific. 


But looking past the personal is the key to appealing to the widest range of buyers. Something as simple as repainting cabinets or replacing worn out carpeting with hardwoods can have a huge impact. 


An agent experienced in making these types of impactful updates is key to spending your renovation dollars in the right places and knows exactly how to prepare your home for sale.


Tip #4: Turn Your Home into a Star with Staging

After making a few key renovations to enhance the property, staging can really make it shine. Think of it as the jewelry on top of the classic little black dress. 


No one wants to spend more money than necessary preparing their home for sale, but the fact is that staging can add hundreds of thousands of dollars to the final sales price


Over 50% of people find their home online, so staging and professional photography have become vitally important in getting buyers to come out from behind their screens and take the next step by seeing a home in person. Equally important is choosing a realtor who understands the importance of an impressive, effective online presence.


Tip #5: Get a Pre-Sale Inspection

Pre-sale inspections uncover problems that can either be addressed before going to market or disclosed so that buyers can make their offers with a full understanding of the property condition. In a competitive situation, buyers will often feel free to bid higher because they know that no defects in the property will come up after they are in contract. Inspections also allow buyers to feel comfortable making contingency-free offers and that can lead to a significant improvement to the sellers’ net gain


Tip #6: Pick Just the Right Time to Enter the Market

While the best timing for entering the market often has more to do with your life circumstances, knowing what to expect and plan for is key. There are only about six weeks of the year that you would want to avoid completely, but depending on the type of home and the neighborhood certain times of the year are definitely more advantageous than others. Knowing the seasonality of the San Francisco housing market is key.


After you and your agent have followed these tips to put your property in its best light, collaborating on the right time to bring the property to market is the last step in getting your home ready to go on the market and ultimately selling for the highest possible premium.


Thinking of selling (or buying)? Call the Krishnan Team at 415-735-5867 for a no-obligation consultation. You can also email us at info@ruthkrishnan.com. 

August 13, 2021
Selling a Home
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