Are you preparing to sell your home in Florida in 2022? Do you feel like you don’t know where to start or are you simply looking for some tips to make the process smoother?
Before we can delve further, let’s take a quick look at some Florida housing market statistics in 2022:
The Florida real estate market is one of the 10 housing markets in the US that are expected to maintain a stronger than average appreciation in 2022. Home sales in Florida are expected to grow by 7.4%, while prices will increase by 7.9%. According to Zillow, the average property price in Florida in 2021 was $334,882, which was a 25.4% increase from the previous year.
As you can see, the Florida real estate market is going to be quite favorable for property sellers in 2022. Today, we’re going to look at what to know about selling a house in Florida, some legal requirements, and tips to streamline the process of selling a house in Florida. But first, let’s see how long it takes to sell property in Florida.
How Long Does it Take to Sell a Home in Florida?
The average time it takes to sell a house in Florida is 90 days. We can further break that down to 55 days that involve listing, advertising, and getting an offer, and 35 days is the average time that it takes to close. Nationally, it takes 82 days to sell a house in the US. This means that the Florida average is 9.8% lower than the national average.
Always keep in mind that the annual national and state average times and numbers keep changing depending on the month and season.
When is the Best Time to Sell a House in Florida?
We’ve also compiled the best time to sell your property in Florida and categorized them into the following sections:
- Fastest time to sell: This involves the best time for you to list and sell your home quickly.
- Highest sale price: This is the month where you can get the best possible offer for your home.
So, when should you list your home if you want to sell it fast? The best month to sell your home fast in Florida is July. On average, it takes 43 days to sell your property in Florida in July. This is faster than the annual average by 12 days.
If you’re wondering when it’s the worst month to sell your home in Florida, just like many other markets, it’s January. It takes an average of 75 days to sell your home in Florida in January.
When it comes to the best time to sell your Florida property for the best price, it’s November. The average sale price during this period is $415,000, which is higher than the annual average by $80,118.
What Are Some Key Legal Requirements for Selling a House in Florida?
Selling a house in Florida may be different than selling in another state when it comes to laws and traditional procedures. Here are some crucial legal requirements you need to know:
Real Estate Agents in Florida
When selling a house in Florida, the real estate agent handling your marketing and property sale is referred to as the “listing agent”. However, in some cases, your listing agent may also represent the buyer. You must consent in writing for this to happen. In this case, the agent will then be referred to as the “transaction broker”.
In Florida, a transaction broker has some obligations to you and to the buyer too. The transaction broker has to assist both parties instead of offering biased attention to one party. In short, the agent is not supposed to offer their undivided attention to one party at the expense of the other.
Dual agency can be quite a thin line to walk. Some agents prefer representing both parties in a transaction to avoid splitting the commission with another agent. However, if you’re going to pay the full commission to one agent, why not get one that is loyal to you and fully represents your interest?
As such, you should carefully consider such a situation before consenting to a transaction agent agreement.
Contract Forms When Selling a House in Florida
Home sellers in Florida and their real estate agents use an FR (Florida Realtors) form, or the FR/BAR (Florida Realtors/Florida Bar) form, such as Residential Contract for Sale and Purchase or the “As Is” Residential Contract for Sale and Purchase.
Are there any differences between these two forms? Yes. The differences lie in the rights and obligations of the parties in the transaction when it comes to inspection and condition of the house. With the As-Is contract, the seller may be released from some obligations relating to the condition of the house. As for the former, the buyer can negotiate for a reduction in price for certain repairs.
Crucial Topics in the Florida Home Purchase and Sale Contracts
While going through the contract as you prepare to sign, pay special attention to the following clauses and sections:
- Personal property: This section specifically lists the personal property that you and the buyer have agreed that you’ll leave behind. In other words, it’s the personal property that’s included in the sale. Likewise, also include any major fixtures, such as appliances, that you intend to remove. State that these items aren’t included in the sale.
- Price: The contract states how much the buyer has to put down after getting into the contract, the amount financed and the balance to be paid. Doublecheck to confirm this amount and the math are correct.
- Financing contingency: If the contract requires that the buyer has to qualify for financing to buy the house, the buyer has to apply for the financing required by the contract. The buyer can specify that they need to get approved for a loan with a certain interest rate and in a certain amount. Check that the terms are realistic to ensure the buyer doesn’t have an easy way out. If the contract doesn’t include a financing contingency, the buyer can legally close whether they get financing or not.
- Closing date: In Florida, this is typically 30 days. However, always be prepared to extend this period since some lenders can take longer to approve the loan.
- Inspection: The contract gives the buyer a right to property inspection. They’re allowed to bring a property inspector or contractor. Check in advance so that you can ascertain any costs that will be needed to make repairs. If some issues are found during the inspection, your real estate agent can recommend the number of concessions you can offer the buyer for the sale to close.
- Title and survey: The contract will state the party responsible for getting the commitment for title insurance and how long the buyer has to go through and object to its contents. If the buyer demands a survey or you provide one, the contract will also state how long the buyer has to object. If there are any issues, try to negotiate a reasonable amount of time with the buyer. If you’re not ready to spend time and money to solve the problem, ensure that the contract gives you the right to cancel and return the deposit. Decide how to go about it earlier on since taking too much time might lead to an obligation for you to solve the issues.
- Riders: The FR/BAR forms include a number of riders that are optional, for subjects such as condos, homeowners’ associations, and seller financing. Some may be too basic to be adequate for complicated situations.
Duty to Disclose
Unlike in some states, property sellers in Florida have an affirmative duty to disclose known property defects, as well as defects they should have known about. This duty came from a 1985 case, known as Johnson Vs. Davis, whereby the Florida Supreme Court ruled that the concept of buyer beware didn’t apply to the sale of residential property.
Tips for Selling a House in Florida in 2022
Many home sellers dream of a stress-free home selling process. They simply want to list their home, use less time and effort marketing it, quickly find a buyer, and close the sale. In reality, selling real estate in Florida may not be that straightforward. There are many moving parts, some of which are not under your control.
For example, your location is one of the top determining factors in how long you take to sell the home and the best possible offer you could receive for it, yet it’s not something you can control. If you’re in an area with low inventory, you could sell faster and get a higher rate. Inversely, if the inventory is high and the market has cooled down, you’ll have to work harder to sell your home.
This is not to scare you. There are a few things you can do when selling a house in Florida in 2022 that will ensure your efforts bear fruits and make the process more seamless.
Here are some vital tips to apply when selling property in Florida in 2022:
Work With an Agent Who Understands the Market
Hiring a real estate agent when selling your home is recommended to help you navigate the process. However, one of the biggest mistakes you can make is working with an agent who doesn’t understand your market, in this case, Florida.
Luckily, the internet has made everything easier. You can now simply look up an agent’s online profile, see their credentials and professional history, on platforms such as the Mashvisor Real Estate Agent Directory. You can also see how many sales they’ve done in the past, and how long they’ve been in the industry and specifically the Florida market.
Remember, you want an agent experienced in your market, so pay special attention to how and where they market their listings. Also, check whether they use professional photos on their profile. This can demonstrate their level of professionalism.
As a homeowner, you might be tempted to sell the home yourself to save on commission. This is what we call For Sale By Owner (FSBO). However, an experienced agent will expose your home to a wide audience and help you get the best possible offer by negotiating on your behalf.
If you choose to do it by yourself, you’ll have to be prepared to oversee the preparation of the property, marketing it, review offers, and take care of all the negotiations.
Obtain a Pre-Sale Home Inspection
While a pre-sale home inspection can look like an optional and avoidable cost, it’s a worthy upfront investment. A comprehensive inspection will help you identify any structural or mechanical issues in your home before you can list it. It’s a great investment because you’ll identify these issues before potential buyers can flag them.
A pre-sale home inspection will put you a few steps ahead of your potential buyers. This will give you an upper hand in the negotiations and also speed up the selling process since you’ll have already done any necessary repairs. By the time your home hits the market, it’ll be ready to receive offers and free of any issues.
List Your Home on the Right Platforms
You can choose to advertise your home by placing a “for sale” sign on your yard. However, that gives you a limited pool of potential clients since only people driving within your neighborhood will see the sign. In modern times, your buyer will most likely see your property online.
Your real estate agent can help you list your property on Multiple Listing Service (MLS) which will show your home to potential buyers on various platforms.
The Mashvisor Property Marketplace is a platform designed to help property sellers and buyers meet based on what the buyer is looking for and what the seller is selling. Potential buyers can see your home based on metrics such as cap rate, occupancy rate, return on investment, cash flow, and cash on cash return.
Besides, you can also analyze other homes similar to yours to ensure you’re listing your home at the right price. This is what we call real estate comps. As a property seller, you’ll find the Property Marketplace platform special since it comes with an in-built email and SMS system. This allows potential buyers to reach you directly and start negotiations.
Because you want to appeal to potential buyers on the platform, be sure to take professional high-quality photos of your property. In addition, buyers nowadays want to take a virtual tour of your property before they can visit. As such, also take high-quality 3D videos and walk them through what you have to offer. Always go a step further to ensure your listing stands out.
The real estate market in Florida is going to be favorable to property sellers in 2022. Demand and prices are going to increase and give you a good return for your effort. Ensure you use the Mashvisor Property Marketplace to increase your visibility and get the best possible offer.