Selling Our House - Cleveland,TX

Updated on August 25, 2015
M.F. asks from Cleveland, TX
19 answers

Hello, we are planning on selling our house in the next 10 months(hopefully). We bought our current home when we were really young and put no down payment. We plan on listing it 100k over what we owe on it. Whatever profit we make(depending on what it sells for) we would like to use that towards our next house. How does that work though and what are fees and costs that have to be taken out that I need to be aware of. We have never sold a house before.

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So What Happened?

Thanks for the responses I have researched and check HAR all the time to see what houses are selling for around us. We live in a very desirable area(we actually want to stay in the area just a different house) so I think our house would sell. I plan to get it appraised but we are currently remodeling the bathrooms and should be done soon. I wouldn't have known to interview realtors and a few other points some of you mentioned. Thanks

More Answers



answers from Philadelphia on

We interviewed several realtors before we selected one. Commission fees can be negotiated although some realtor will not do this. (For this reason I prefer ReMax realtors). One realtor told us she would list our house for a much higher price than the other realtors. When we read the fine said we would agree to lower the price in 2 weeks if it didn't sell within 2 weeks. I often wondered how many people signed with her because they thought she would sell the house for a higher price.

The best advice I have for you is to make your house look as much like a sample house as possible. Clear out all clutter. Rent a storage unit and put out of season clothes/shoes etc. in it. Empty your garage and basement.

Best of luck!!!

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

Have you had your home appraised? Listing price is determined by the market, not by what you want for it.

I'd get the opinion of at least three realtors. I talked to 5. It amazed me how different their takes on it were. The price difference was literally a 50k span. Don't be fooled. Many realtors will tell you what you want to hear, but this doesn't mean your house will sell at that price. This is why I talked to 5.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

interview several realtors and ask them to be specific and clear on the fees. there are many on both sides (commissions, closing costs, inspections) that are all up for negotiation.
in most cases if you put all the profit into a new house it benefits you as far as paying capital gains taxes, but you really need to speak to a tax professional as far as that goes.
good luck on your sale! do you have your next place picked out yet?
:) khairete

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Williamsport on

Get the book "Buying and Selling Houses for Dummies" they have EVERYTHING you need to know, realtor fees, costs, etc. There are lots of resources out there. Get educated before you let realtors give you their shpeels. Also, your price will be dependent on market and house's worth. It has little to do with what you want for it. You can get it appraised. You may make a nice profit if the value in your town has gone up and you've improved the home. Or you may not make a profit if it hasn't risen in value and buyers are scarce.. Find out what it's worth, find out all the best tips on getting top dollar, ask a little more $ so you'll get talked down to true value..and good luck! Congrats!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Salinas on

You need to educate yourself. You should use a realtor as the questions you're asking could be easily answered with a bit of time online. Since you are asking here it seems you aren't the type to take this on without the assistance of a professional.

We sold our last home ourselves but we already had a buyer and I spent tons of time learning about the process. I'm also a pretty good negotiator, but I will tell you that part is brutal, face to face with your buyers.

So find a really good, highly recommended realtor. But don't leave it all up to him/her either!

Research the comps, comparable houses: same area, similar size, amenities, condition etc. Research the sales commission, around here realtors get 5-6% usually paid entirely by seller. Then there's title & escrow costs, inspection so you know what issues may need to be addressed, cost of repairs, you'd be surprised here, no matter how perfect the house there are usually a few things that need to be fixed.
You may also need to have it termite tented in order for your buyer to get their loan that's often the case in CA.

Selling a home and the costs of moving associated with it is very expensive so be ready to cough up some of that profit.

When you say you plan on listing it 100K more than you owe it sounds like that's what you WANT to get for it. Take what you want out of the equation and look at what similar homes are selling for. You can't just pull a number out of the blue, it has to be priced well right from the start. That number may be higher or lower than what you're wanting to get out of it.

Selling and moving is a huge PITA so make sure it's what you really want. Good luck!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Boston on

How you price a house has a lot more to do with the market, what other comparable houses have sold for in your town, and many other volatile factors that have nothing to do with what you want for it or what you paid for it.

Talk to more than one realtor - and not necessarily the one with the most signs up in town. We have one realtor in town, for example, who has tons of properties, BUT he is a fast-talking sleaze ball and he manipulates the prices of one house to maximize the benefit FOR HIM on another house (which is illegal of course but he gets away with it). We have another realtor who works her but off helping people know exactly what work should be done to increase the value and what can be allowed to slide, and she brings her own furniture or a friend's patio set in if it will make a house on the market look more attractive.

And do some research and reading so you have all the terminology committed to memory. You'll need to know about commissions and closing costs and inspections, for example, and not just the cosmetic improvements you need. Staging is also important - getting rid of things that owners think are "decorative" and buyers think are "clutter" or too personal. They need to see themselves in your home, not a bunch of your family photos, for example.

Don't skip a realtor because you don't want to pay the commission. If you don't have experience selling a house, you will lose out big time.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Anchorage on

There are closing costs for both the buyer and the seller, and they range greatly depending on the area you live in, the title company you use, and the price of your home. They can range from just a couple thousand to several thousand. Often the buyer will ask that the seller pay part or all of their closing costs, but this is often rolled into the price of the house simply because the buyer may not have the cash up front for these fees. For example, we purchased our home for $175,000, but did not have the cash for the $5000 in closing fees so the seller agreed to pay them (they would come out of our loan) and we increased the sell price to $180,000 (so while they did the actually paying, the money still came from us). This is very common. I would not agree to simply pay "all closing costs" for the buyer, set a limit in the contract ("we will pay up to $xxxx towards closing cost for the buyer")

If you use a relator then their % will be agreed upon up front so you will know roughly what that will cost.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

Go to Dave Ramsays website and look at the realtors HE recommends in your area.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Springfield on

2 easy steps.
1: get a realtor.
2: ask them all your questions and they will do all the confusing stuff for you.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

If you are not well versed in real estate, my suggestion is to use your money wisely and find a good realtor.

We can't tell you exact fees but there are fees associated with closing which can run up into thousands as well as contract issues per the inspection when it takes place and realtor commissions. SOMETIMES, a realtor will waive his/her commission on selling your house IF you use them to find your next home. SOMETIMES realtors will waive no fees and you end up paying both the selling and buying fees. Be careful!!! Don't choose s realtor from the yellow pages or who puts flyers on your door. Find a good solid realtor by researching the best in your area and getting references.

The last thing you want to do is sell by owner when you don't know all the details of how it works and get some realtor or investor interested in your property, pick up on what you are not aware of and then take advantage of you.

We've bought homes twice and built twice and 2 years ago bought a condo for our daughter for her to have while she is in college about 20 minutes away from our home. Even though we even though know the ropes we STILL go through the realtor and legal counsel in order to cover all bases.

I am not sure where Cleveland TX is located but I know where I am houses are selling before they hit the market at the asked price and above and for cash. We were just offered cash about a week ago for our condo sight unseen because of the location and that cash amount was WELL above what we paid 2 years ago.

The market in TX right now is hot. You need to make sure you are talking to people who know the business well so you are not taken advantage of and that you end up better off than you originally thought.

I think it is great that you are not rushing to sell. Take your time.

Best wishes to you!!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Norfolk on

How long have you had this house?
What is the market like in your area and what have other similar houses in your area recently sold for?
We could currently sell our first home for more than double what we paid for it (we paid off 30 yr mortgage in 12 yrs) because we've owned it for 25.
We'd LOVE to be able to sell it to pay off our current mortgage on our 2nd house but the although the market is getting there, it's not quite there yet.
Maybe we can do it in another year - but we've been waiting since 2007 for it.
Some people can "Sell by Owner" but I wouldn't be comfortable doing it without a real estate agent - I don't know enough to do it without one.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from New York on

You have received tons of good advice so far.

You need to learn so much more about selling your home. If homes in your area are only selling for the same price you paid for yours or lower you can only expect a buyer to pay about the same prices that the market is selling for unless there is something that sets your home apart from the others, even then expecting a buyer to pay well over market would be very naive on your part.

The realtor fees if applicable fees are paid by the seller in most cases. Since you are the seller that would be you, even if you plan on selling it yourself, if a potential buyer makes an offer through his/her agent more than likely you would be expected to pick up the fee what ever the percentage of the sale that may be.

Since you have never sold a home before, you really need to learn more before putting your home up for sale. Do your research on this topic and learn more. The more you know the more the better off you will be as far as making your home buyer ready, setting a sales price, marketing your home to the most potential buyers, and possibly getting the profit you are looking to get or better.

The more you know the better off you can be.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Kansas City on

That depends on if you go through a realtor or sell it yourself. If you go through a realtor, then whatever percentage they require you will have to pay them. Also sometimes when you sell a house, the buyer will demand you to pay their closing costs, depending on how bad you want to sell your house. It is a very complex process and if you have never done it before i would suggest you either go through a real estate company or doing A LOT of research online so there are no surprises. good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Amarillo on

When you decide to put your home on the market make sure it is move in ready. That means that you move out and they can move in with little to no repairs needed.

You must take out any and all signs of your life in the home as in photos or anything else. Make your home look like it would if no one lived in it. We all have too much stuff stuffed in our homes (I am guilty as stated).

If you have pets, you must make sure that there is no scent or odor of any when the door is first opened or that will turn off a lot of perspective buyers. Another thing is ethnic food and the scent clinging to the walls in the home. I once visited a house on open tour for realtors and someone had just cooked a food which permeated the visit and turned many realtors off as for a showing issue. I think the realtor who had the listing spoke with the homeowners about their cooking later after we left and went to the next house on the tour. Curb appeal is another factor -- is the yard inviting or is it a pile of weeds? This also indicates what the inside of the home might look like.

Good luck to you. Do contact a few realtors to get a feel of what the market is like in your area.

the other S.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

All I know i that you have a set length of time to invest the money in your new home or you have to pay capital gains taxes. I think it's six months. And it has to be your primary residence, not an investment property (in order to avoid capital gains taxes). And also closing costs (realtor's commission and escrow fees/costs).

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Lakeland on

I would talk to a realtor to find out how much you can get for your house and at what price you should list it.

They can also help you out with what fees you will need to pay (closing costs, taxes, etc.).



answers from Los Angeles on

I believe you get a capital gains exclusion on your first home (Don't have to pay taxes on the profit). As far as the actual transfer of $$, that is done through a third party (escrow agency). They verify that that the $$ is legitimate and goes to the right place. There will be fees for sure, especially if you use a realtor. I think they take 3%. And there are often fees with your new mortgage.



answers from Chicago on

Interview 3-5 realtors. Don't go with the one that tries to blow sunshine up your butt. Go with one who you think will walk you thru the process and who will answer your questions throughout the process. You also want a realtor that will call you weekly with an update on any transactions that happened in your area over the weekend. The realtor can recommend a Real Estate attorney or you can call a title company and ask for some Attorneys names.



answers from Oklahoma City on

One thing I will point out is that no one here except Texans can answer your question correctly.

I worked with Habitat for Humanity in a Texas town and Texas has completely different laws pertaining to housing than anywhere else is the USA> due to how they were purchased long long ago.

When I was working with the Director of that office her laws about the new home owners mortgages was vastly different. They had to figure in so many other things when it came to the price they figured for their Habitat homes.

In our Habitat we had many homes donated to us, left to us when an older person died, and we only rehabbed them. We'd strip them down to the studs and re do all the insulation and subfloors and from there up and in. Our insurance companies always insured them as new homes because there was very very little of the original structure left at the sale.

We kept track of every expense and when we were done we sold the house to the assigned family for what we had in it. We didn't add anything on for profit.

The director in Texas tried to explain it to me that there were so many taxes and fees that it often cost them $15K just to get the paperwork done on the homes and they had to add all that in.

So please call a local realtor.


Tomorrow. You need to call a Realtor to come in and give you a value on your home. For what they believe it will sell for as is. They will give you a list of improvements you will have to do to it to make it sellable.

My sister was told she needed to take down her rooster border and to make her kitchen more neutral. She took it down and put up another. The Realtor came back and told her to remove that border too. She told her it made the house look dated and that having border in the kitchen would keep it from selling. No matter what else she did to it, border is old fashioned and will keep a house from selling.

She told them they needed to update their countertops. They didn't want to remodel the kitchen and spend $25K. They wanted to keep their money and sell the house too. When the house was inspected the inspector found water damage. My brother in laws shower was leaking under the slab. They had to pay for that repair. That couple did back out of their contract because they said if that needed repairs they were afraid that there would be other plumbing issues.

She ended up selling the house for a couple thousand less than what they'd paid for it. They'd been in it a few years too so they did have some money left after they paid off the note. That all went on the down payment for the next one.

A friend of mine had a gorgeous 5 bedroom 2 story home with huge rooms and 3 1/2 bathrooms. She had a dark green accent wall in her kitchen and the bedrooms had different colors on the walls. The carpet throughout was one color, laid when the house was built.

The realtor told them for their house to sell at any profit they needed to repaint the whole house AND they had to put down new carpet. The Realtor picked out the colors and the carpet. They sold their house right at what they paid for it but if they hadn't had the new carpet and paint it would have sold for about $20K less.

In many homes there are repairs that must be done.

Houses aren't selling for what they're worth right now. I have a friend in Branson who paid nearly $300K for her 2800 sq. ft home on the side of a cliff. It has a weight room, media room, an office that is 1/4 of the downstairs, and more.

They went to refinance through the Obama thing where they could get their house payment reduced drastically. It went from $1975 per month down to around $800 per month. Guess how much her home is valued at right now....$65K. They paid over $300K for it and it's only worth $65K now.

That's why you need to have a Realtor come in and evaluate your home. An outsider's look at what it is actually worth. You might be surprised at the selling price they put on it. Hopefully it won't be lower than you paid for it.

I don't say this to be mean but I do say it because no one is getting more than they paid for their house and they haven't in years. The housing market is so low, the buyers are the ones getting the phenomenal deals.

If the Realtor gives you a list of things that make your home worth less you have to sit down with your husband and decide. Do you want to spend the money to do all the superficial pretty things that makes your home more visually appealing or not.

If you are like my friend that had to repaint every wall to all one color and you have to do new flooring and who knows what they'll dislike in the kitchen and bathrooms, might want to sell it for less instead of having to go get a home loan and do all those improvements then it still might not sell for what you want.

I hope you listen to the Realtor. If you don't like what that one said you can always call another company, in fact you could call several and have them come on different days. To see if they all find the same problems or if they are all over the page. Then you can see your home through the eyes of a professional who would come in the door with prospective buyers to see what they would be trying to sell.

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