Do’s and Don’ts for Buying and Selling a House

Summer tends to be the season for home buying and selling, but buyers beware. It’s a sellers market, at least according to Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff. He says home prices are up and the number of homes for sale is in tight supply.

Rascoff advises that buyers should expect heavy competition and should be prepared to compete with at least 10 other bidders.

He should know. Zillow has listings and data on more than 100 million homes across the country. He has advice for home buyers and sellers. Here are Rascoff’s top five pieces of advice for home buyers and sellers this season:

  1. You need a real estate agent, regardless of whether you’re a buyer or a seller. “It’s an infrequent, emotional, complex transaction,” says Rascoff. “Having a great person at your side can be really valuable.”
  2. Rascoff recommends “minimal renovation” for sellers. He says a fresh coat of paint and removing clutter should do the trick, but warns, “do not launch in that full kitchen remodel.”
  3. Get preapproved for a home loan if you are a buyer. “A lot of sellers are very interested not just in price, but certainty,” he says.
  4. Beware of hidden costs. Before making a bid, find out about maintenance costs, homeowners’ association dues, and property taxes.
  5. The best time to list a home for sale is in early May, while Rascoff says the best time to buy is during late summer.

Watch the video above to hear more of our interview with Zillow’s CEO.

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