A Step-by-Step First Time Seller's Guide

Putting your home on the market can be a stressful process, especially when you don’t know what to expect. Fortunately, with the help of an experienced team of real estate agents and this easy to follow guide, you can smoothly complete the process. Following these steps will help you prepare so you can get organized and sell your home for the best price possible.


Step 1: Understand Why You're Selling

What do you want to accomplish with the sale of your home? Do you want to make a certain amount of money that you can put toward a larger or nicer home? Do you need to sell it as soon as possible to facilitate a move to a new city or area? Once you understand your needs, you can better craft your offer. For example, if you need to sell quickly, you might want to price your home lower than if your goal is to make a certain profit margin. Make sure you convey these needs to your team of REALTORS® once you choose one so they can adjust your selling price accordingly.


Step 2: Determine Selling Price

Knowing how to price your home is one of the most important parts of the selling process. When you set a fair price in the beginning, you’ll get the most interest from other real estate agents and prospective buyers. Overpricing your home could lead to reduced interest, and underpricing leads to receiving less than what your home is worth. Working with a team of real estate agent is the best way to determine the right selling price for your home. A team of real estate agent with experience can determine what other comparable homes are selling for, evaluate the current market, and may even suggest a home appraisal.


Step 3: Start Preparations

If you’ve kept your home in showroom condition since you’ve lived in it, you’re in the minority of homeowners. Once you price your home, it’s time to start getting it ready to be shown to potential buyers. This includes getting rid of clutter, depersonalizing the space so that buyers can envision themselves in the space, making any small repairs, and doing a deep clean to make sure your home is in pristine condition.


Step 4: Develop a Marketing Strategy

We will develop a marketing strategy that is perfect for advertising your home. This involves listing the home and then driving the right people to that listing through social media campaigns, agent-to-agent referrals, traditional media, or SEO advertising. Our team creates a marketing campaign that aims to get the most possible traffic to your listing in the first three weeks after becoming a client.


Step 5: Evaluate Offers

Receiving an offer is an exciting part of the process, but it doesn’t mean the journey is over. We will evaluate each offer and make sure the party making the offer is prequalified or pre-approved by a mortgage lender and that their offer is acceptable to you. If the offer is too low, you can make a counter-offer or offer other ways to bridge the gap, such as covering some or all of the closing costs, making repairs, adjusting the move-in date, or leaving some appliances or fixtures for the new buyer.


Step 6: Accept an Offer

Once we deem the offer is acceptable, we will review the proposed contract to make sure it’s all in order and includes the necessary components such as deposit amount, down payment, financing, inspection rights and repair allowances, contingencies, settlement date, and a list of fees and who will pay them. When both parties have agreed to the term, a final contract will be prepared by your team of real estate agents.


Step 7: Get Ready to Close

You have accepted an offer and are now very close to the end of your selling journey. But first, you and the buyer must make a list of what needs to be done before closing. In some cases, your home may need to be formally inspected, surveyed, and appraised. In other cases, major or minor repairs will need to be made before the house can close. We will head up efforts to develop and execute this list, get each action item paid for by the correct party, and make sure everything is in order by the closing date. A few days before the closing date, we will call the company closing the transaction to make sure everything is ready to go. If you haven’t done so already, you also need to make arrangements to move out of the home so the new buyer can take possession.


Step 8: Close

You’ve reached the last step in the seller’s process. When you close on a home you are selling, you are legally transferring ownership of the property to the new buyer. We will meet with the company closing the transaction to sign the final paperwork and go over any issues that have not yet been taken care of. During this time, you can also make plans with your team of REALTORS® to handle final details such as canceling utilities, cable, and lawn or trash services, changing the name on accounts that the new owner is retaining and ensuring the new owner has instructions for all appliances that will remain in the home.


Once you have sold your home, you’re free to take the next step on your journey. Whether this is relocating to a new city, moving into a larger home, or downsizing and enjoying your life as empty-nesters, knowing all your selling responsibilities have been taken care of will help you achieve peace of mind for your new path.


Avant Garde Aspen is not just a real estate team; they're a strategic partner. Their expertise in marketing and negotiation is unmatched. When it came time to sell my single-family home in Willits, Stephanie and Erik exceeded all my expectations. They made the process seamless and profitable, and I would recommend them to anyone looking to sell their luxury home.

— Sarah


Working with Stephanie and Erik was an absolute pleasure. They have an unparalleled knowledge of the Roaring Fork Valley real estate market and an impressive network of contacts. They took the time to truly understand our needs and preferences, making the entire home-buying process a breeze. Thanks to them, we found our dream home in Carbondale, and we couldn't be happier.

— David & Emily


We've had the pleasure of working with Stephanie & Erik on multiple investment properties throughout Aspen and Mid-Valley. Their insight into the local market trends and investment potential is invaluable. They helped us identify lucrative opportunities and guided us through the acquisition process with professionalism and efficiency. Thanks to Avant Garde Aspen, our investment real estate portfolios are...

— Robert & Lisa


Stephanie is such a fantastic real estate agent who made the process of selling our home a breeze. She was attentive to every detail, worked very well with the other agent and lender to get our deal closed, and was incredibly professional throughout the whole process. Plus her marketing skills and social media presence reach a wide audience to expand the pool of buyers. I would highly recommend her to an...

— RJ B.


My wife and I had a tremendously positive and successful experience working with Stephanie as our listing agent for the home that we lived in for 38 years! Stephanie made several trips to our home in advance of listing, to advise us in detail about how to use our own furnishings to stage our home for showing, arranged for a twilight photo shoot that produced spectacular results, and then gave us very wel...

— Steve & Ellyn


First off, I would like to say how appreciative I am to have met Stephanie prior to buying a home. Initially, I was hesitant to begin the process as it was a bit overwhelming, but Stephanie has an incredible amount of real estate knowledge and a natural ability to translate that to the layman. It helped make the process a lot less stressful than I had led myself to believe and I associate that with her p...

— Charles & Maddie


I've had the privilege of working alongside Stephanie Kroll in the real estate industry for several years now. She has consistently demonstrated an exceptional level of expertise and commitment to her clients. Her deep understanding of the Aspen and Roaring Fork Valley real estate markets is nothing short of impressive. Whether it's understanding market trends, property values, or the intricacies of diff...

— Clark T.

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