Costa Mesa's Neighborhood Blog: August 2012

A blog about Newport and Costa Mesa with an emphasis on Costa Mesa Real Estate and Newport Beach Real Estate, written by a lifetime local resident of coastal Orange County whose knowledge of the area, combined with a strong background in mortgages, real estate and being an attorney, gives her clients many advantages.

94 Ways We Help You Sell Your Costa Mesa Home

94 Ways We Help You Sell Your Costa Mesa Home

There are a lot of steps to get your home sold, and many people don't realize just what goes into it.

It sounds easy, doesn't it?  Put a sign in your front yard, put the house on MLS, and the buyers and offers will just pour in?

Even in a seller's market, there are many details that go in to getting your Costa Mesa home sold.  Wondering what the steps are? Read on to see what exactly we do to help you get your Costa Mesa home sold.


Costa Mesa Home

1.            Initial conversation with you to determine your reasons for selling your house.

2.            Research tax records to verify full and complete legal information is available to prospective buyers and buyer’s agents on MLS printout.

3.            Research property’s ownership and deed type.

4.            Research property’s public record information for lot size & dimensions.

5.            Title check to verify if there are any additional and/or unknown liens on property.

6.            Verify legal name(s) of owner(s) in county’s public property records

7.            Download and review property tax roll information

8.            Comprehensive review of sales activity for past 6-18 months from MLS and public records databases

9.            Comprehensive review of  “Average Days on Market” for houses of this type, price range, and location.

10.        Comprehensive review of competitive properties that are currently for sale.

11.        Comprehensive review of similar properties that have been withdrawn.

12.        Comprehensive review of competitive properties that are currently under contract.

13.        Comprehensive review of expired properties (houses that did not sell during their time on the market.)

14.        Research competitive properties that sold in the last six months.

15.        Call agents, if needed, to discuss activity on the comparable properties they have listed in the area.

16.        Research the previous sales activity (if any) on your home.

17.        Help you to stage the house with the recommendations of a former HGTV producer as part of our seller services to make sure your house looks its very best for potential buyers.

18.        Recommend and coordinate with stager if more work is needed.

19.        Coordinate and recommend movers, cleaners and estate services as needed.

20.        Recommend handyman and any other requested services to help you with any needed repairs or assistance.

21.        Provide you with home showing guidelines to help have the home prepared for appointments.  (i.e. lighting, soft music, etc.)

22.        Obtain and verify accurate methods of contacting you.

23.        Gather information to help assess your needs.

24.        Assess your motivation.

25.        Assess your immediate concerns.

26.        Assess your timing and how quickly you need to move.

27.        Ask you questions about the property and themselves to learn how to better serve and provide helpful information if needed.

28.        Discuss your purchase plans and determine whether I can assist you in your next purchase or research and recommend a qualified agent in your new location if you’re moving out of the area by utilizing our trusted ActiveRain (world’s largest real estate networking site) contacts. 

29.        Provide you with relocation information if needed.

30.        Obtain information that will help me and my team to prepare the listing, advertising and marketing materials.  Questions will include:  What type of improvements have you done to your house in the past five years?  What other features of your home make it attractive to buyers?  (Type of cabinets, flooring, decks, pool, fireplace, etc.) What do you think the home is worth?  Why did you choose this house?  What do you like best about the area?

31.        Prepare you by instructing you to gather home information:  Encourage you to have a copy of deed available. Encourage you to have a current tax bill available.  Encourage you to have two sets of keys ready.  One of the keys will be inserted into the lock box; the other set will be kept by me in case there is ever a problem with the first set.  Encourage you to have a list of utility bills and their amounts from the past year.  Encourage you to have a copy of blueprint if available. Encourage you to have a copy of your title policy and survey available if they have them.

32.        Use the information provided by you to create home books for all the potential buyers that are interested in your property in full color, which include a general information flyer with several pictures of the property, a copy of the floor plan and plat map, and a financing options flyer.

33.        Strategically price home to enable it to show up on more MLS searches.

34.        Prepare an equity analysis to show seller expenses, closing costs and net proceeds.

35.        Provide necessary disclosures required by law for you to complete for your protection.

36.        Take full color photographs of the inside and outside of your home for marketing flyers, advertisements and the internet.

37.        Electronically submit your home listing information to the California Regional Multiple Listing Service (CRMLS) for exposure to over 68,000 real estate agents, including 33,000 in the Southern California area.

38.        Immediately submit photos of the interior and exterior of your home to the MLS at the same time listing is input as this allows buyers and agents to view pictures when narrowing down homes they will actually tour.  Homes with more pictures are viewed approximately 299% more often than homes with just one photo.

39.        Set up home warranty, if you choose to protect your home 12 months after sale to reassure buyer of the quality of your home.

40.        Install an electronic lockbox to allow buyers and their agents to view your home conveniently, but without compromising your family’s security.

41.        Write remarks in the MLS system specifying how you want the property to be shown.

42.        Arrange free 30-minute consultation with a financial advisor to go over details of transaction and financial consequences of sale.

43.        Use the reverse prospecting feature of the MLS System to discover buyers looking for a house like yours and then email copies of your home listing information to their Realtors for them to review immediately.

44.        Maximize showing potential through professional signage.

45.        Install sign in front of yard if allowed by Home Owners Association.

46.        Install text sign rider if allowed by Home Owners Association to allow buyers to access your information at their convenience – morning, noon and night to capture information on all potential buyers. This takes advantage of the numerous mobile devices that so many of us always have at hand and takes advantage of the buyer’s need for immediate information.

47.        Give home unique ID# to allow information on home to be accessed 24 hours 7 days a week-also allows our team to track and control interest on home from different sources and publications.

48.        Create compelling “teaser” flyer to stimulate calls on your home.

49.        Create a property brochure of features and lifestyle benefits of your home for use by buyers’ agents showing your home.  This will be prominently displayed in your kitchen or dining room.

50.        Use other marketing techniques; such as offering free reports to increase the chance of buyers calling in, discussing and pre-qualifying for and touring your home.

51.        Help you prepare the Homeowners’ information sheet which includes information on utilities and services the buyer will need to know when transferring after closing.

52.        Prepare a financing sheet with several financing plans to educate buyers on methods to purchase your home.

53.        Advertise house to all qualified buyers in my database.

54.        Insert your property on my website, which will have several property pictures and main information about your property made available to anyone who visits my website.

55.        Create an online property feature sheet on

56.        Create an online property feature sheet on

57.        Create on online property feature sheet on other real estate sites.

58.        Promote your home by distributing flyers and brochures to local lenders and local Chamber of commerce to send to those relocating to our area.

59.        Deliver copies of and marketing material of your home to you for your review.

60.        Promote your home to top Realtors in your area.

61.        Advertise your property on

62.        Send a personalized letter to residents in your immediate neighborhood promoting the features and lifestyle benefits of your home.  Often neighbors know friends or family members who are thinking of moving into the neighborhood.

63.        Create a personal website for your home using your house’s address as the website name.

64.        Create mobile website for your house. 50 million people per day log into mobile devices, and this makes your house readily available to them.

65.        Create blog posts about your house to draw more attention to it by using SEO and backlinks.

66.        Use blog posts about the local area to draw additional attention to your house.

67.        Make forms available to entice other Realtors to send back buyer impressions on showing of your home.

68.        Email you every Tuesday with the showing report on your property to keep you updated throughout the listing.

69.        Log in all home showing to keep record of marketing activity and potential purchasers.

70.        Follow up with all the agents who have shown your home via fax back showing report and voice mail to answer questions they may have.

71.        Prepare bi-weekly market analysis with updates for showings, marketing done, changes in market forces and  any activity in your neighborhood including new homes on for sale, in escrow and sold to keep you informed about important market conditions within your area.

72.        Pre-qualifying all buyers whom our Team will bring to your home before showing to avoid wasting your time with unqualified showings and buyers.

73.        Discuss qualifications of prospective buyers to help determine buyer motivation, ability to purchase and probability of closing on the sale.

74.        Provide Open House with a licensed Realtor at your request.

75.        Handle paperwork if price adjustment is needed.

76.        Receive offer (if coming from another agent) and review important details of contract to determine best negotiating position.

77.        Educate you about and explain all aspects of the sales contract, and all counter offers.

78.        Review pre-approval and contact buyer’s lender if necessary.

79.        Review proof of funds for down payment.

80.        Negotiate highest price and best terms for you and your situation.

81.        Highly trained office staff to process and track entire closing process.

82.        Coordinate scheduling of appraisal and supply comparable sales if needed.

83.        Coordinate scheduling termite inspection.

84.        Coordinate scheduling of Home Inspection with other Realtor and handle contingencies if any.

85.        Coordinate and review with you any buyer requested inspections and assist cooperating agent with any problems that may arise relative to your home and the sale.

86.        Review and advise you on any repair requests.

87.        Coordinate with escrow and title to ensure that all required documents are completed and filed in a timely manner.

88.        Coordinate financing, final inspections, closing and possession activities on your behalf to help ensure a smooth closing process.

89.        Consistent follow up with buyer’s agent and lender to make certain that transaction closes as smoothly as possible and to limit last minute surprises.

90.        Set up final walk through of your home for buyers and their agent.

91.        Assist in scheduling the closing date for you and all parties.

92.        Arrange possession and transfer of home (keys, warranties, garage door openers, community pool keys, mail box keys, educate new owners of garbage/recycling days, mail procedures, etc.).

93.        Provide pizza party on moving day so you have one less thing about which to concern yourself.

94.        Send letter with picture of your new home on it-delivered to 20 friends and family giving out your change of address.

Please contact Christine Donovan at 714-319-9751 to set up a free consultation and get a free valuation of your house.


About the author: Christine Donovan is a California Residential Real Estate Broker with experience in assisting clients buy and sell residential real estate.

Are you upside down in your home? Is it worth less than you owe? Are you concerned about making your mortgage payment? For more information see Options to Foreclosures, understanding short sales or contact me at to discuss your options.

If you want to buy a home or to list your property for sale, please click Newport Beach homes, Costa Mesa homes, Huntington Beach homes or Orange County homes.  Click the link if you are interested in buying a home at a courthouse auction sale.

Contact me at or 714-319-9751 to learn about her system which will make your buying and selling experience easier.

Disclaimer: All information in this blog is deemed reliable but is subject to change at any time and is not guaranteed to be accurate nor are there any warantees either express or implied. This blog is not intended to offer any legal, tax or other advice.

Click Orange County homes for sale to view all OC homes for sale.

Comment balloon 12 commentsChristine Donovan • August 13 2012 10:47PM
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