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Helen Lyons, GRI, CNE, ASP®

helen.lyons@lnf.com
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Helen Lyons, GRI, CNE, ASP®
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helen.lyons@lnf.com
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Why Choose Helen

If you're thinking about selling your home, you've come to the right place.  I have over a decade of real estate service to sellers and buyers and am knowledgeable about all aspects of the real estate transaction.  From the beginning, I will work to set goals with you to ensure that the sale of your home goes smoothly and is handled with the utmost of care and professionalism.

Chances are the home you are about to sell is your single most important investment.  My expertise as an Accredited Staging Professional® makes me uniquely qualified to help you position your home to sell for the best possible price, in the shortest amount of time, and with the least amount of disruption to your life.

 

Setting the List Price

Getting the price right on the first try will always bring the earliest and best offers.  A home that is overpriced will sit on the market and become stale.  I will help you in this process by preparing a CMA report (Comparative Market Analysis) showing recent sales of comparable homes in your neighborhood. The CMA will contain information on original list price and actual "SOLD" price for every home that has been listed and sold in the past 6 months, showing the number of days on market from "Active" status to "Under Contract" status. The CMA report will also show homes that failed to sell and ones that were withdrawn from the market during that time period.

The CMA report will also include a summary of "Active" homes currently on the market in your neighborhood.  It is vitally important to pay attention to these neighborhood "Active" listings, as they are your home's competition once your listing goes public.  Know your neighborhood comparables and price your own home accordingly.  You don't want your listing to help sell your neighbor's home while your own home languishes on the market.

 

My Customized Marketing Plan

My plan is to market your home to other real estate agents even before the "For Sale" sign makes its appearance.   I am fortunate to be affiliated with the DC metropolitan area's largest privately owned real estate company with over 200 sales offices and 14,000-plus sales associates.  The Long & Foster network of dedicated professionals is in constant touch with qualified buyers.  I will develop a customized plan for the marketing of your home based upon your specific needs and goals.  Some of the elements of my marketing plan will include:

  • Enter your home in the multiple listing service (brightmls) immediately or otherwise as you direct
  • Arrange for an online virtual tour to accompany your brightmls listing information
  • Create high quality color brochures that will showcase your home's best features
  • Place targeted advertising in print publications
  • Send print and email marketing pieces to area home buyers and agents
  • With your consent, place a lockbox for easy realtor access
  • Hold one or more Tuesday Brokers Open house tours for agents

As soon as you are ready for your listing to go public, I will aggressively market your home using a combination of networking with other agents and advertising via the internet and targeted print publications to maximize your home's exposure to potential qualified buyers.

 

Preparing Your Home to Sell (a.k.a. Elements of Staging)

Chances are you have been very comfortable in your home and you've personalized it just to your liking.  However, the way you live in your home and the way it should be marketed are two different things.  Now that you've decided to sell your home, it's time to think of it differently.  You want the best possible offer in the least amount of time and you want your home to be a standout among the competition.

As an Accredited Staging Professional® I am uniquely qualified to help you make the transition from living in your home to selling your home.  My home staging expertise comes to you free of charge. This is because I use the principles of staging in my real estate practice, but I am not engaged in the home staging business.

When we meet to discuss listing your home, I will provide you with a detailed "to do" list I've created to help you prioritize the big and small "smart" investments (e.g. painting, landscaping, repairs) that will bring you the best price in today's market.

 

Evaluating Offers

I'll help you objectively scrutinize every offer without compromising your marketing position.  It's important to remember that an offer on the table can be withdrawn if you wait too long to respond with your counter-offer, so know what matters most to you and be prepared to negotiate.  It's likely that whatever motivated you to sell your home will have some bearing on how you will evaluate offers.  For example, it's not only the price of the offer that matters, but also the terms the buyer is seeking (e.g. number of days to settlement) and the buyer's financial position.  I'll help you negotiate the best price and terms.

 

Contract to Closing

You've reached an initial sales agreement with a ratified contract, and now begins a series of time-sensitive steps that must be fulfilled in order to reach the settlement table.  Home inspection, financing, and appraisal contingencies are among the provisions that impose a strict timetable on both buyer and seller.  Removing contingencies and giving notifications to the other party all come with deadlines that must be carefully adhered to.  Home inspection reports frequently result in a request from the buyer that the seller agree to make repairs before the inspection contingency can be removed.  Likewise, lenders can require certain repairs as a condition of approving a mortgage.  Sometimes there needs to be further negotiation between buyer and seller once the appraisal report comes in.  Occasionally the settlement company will discover a cloud on the title that needs to be cleared up.  I can objectively help you resolve these issues and keep the transaction moving toward settlement.  There is an overwhelming amount of paperwork, and these time-sensitive negotiating steps require constant vigilance.   Between contract and closing I will maintain regular communication with the buyer's agent to make sure that things proceed smoothly and stay on schedule.  My attention to detail and my skill at negotiating unexpected issues are two of the most important components of my due diligence and commitment to your satisfaction.