If you’re looking for selling a house in Virginia, you’ll want to keep a close eye on the latest market trends. In March 2023, Virginia saw a 2.5% decrease in home prices compared to the previous year, with a median price of $398,100. That’s why it’s more important than ever to stay informed about the local real estate market.
Despite the decrease in prices, the number of house for sale in Virginia was down 22.5% year over year, with 9,355 homes sold in March this year compared to 12,074 homes sold in March last year. Additionally, the median days on the market was 29 days, an increase of 10 days from the previous year.
As a homeowner, these statistics can be daunting, but fear not! With the right knowledge and guidance, you can successfully sell your home in Virginia. In this blog, we’ll provide you with expert insights and tips on how to navigate the current real estate market and sell your house for the best possible price. So, if you’re ready to get started, keep reading!
📉 Virginia Housing Market Update
- Median Home Sale Price Drop YoY: The median home sale price dropped to $364,366, down by 2.3% YoY, the biggest decline in more than a decade.
- Fewer Buyers are Applying for Mortgages: Mortgage purchase applications were down by 31% YoY. Due to expensive financing, fewer buyers are applying for mortgages.
- iBuyers are No More a Viable Option: Several iBuyers have either shut down or are suffering massive losses. As per our research, most iBuyers are not offering more than 70% of a property’s Fair Market Value.
- Bottom Line: In 2023, more sellers in the Old Dominion are opting to sell their homes by owner. By listing on the MLS with the best FSBO sites in Virginia, your Virginia home gets maximum exposure, and you save thousands of dollars in commissions.
We have broken down the important steps in selling a house in Virginia, so you can attract more buyers and sell for the best price.
Step 1: Determine How You Want to Sell Your House in Virginia
How you choose to sell will determine all other aspects of selling your Virginia home. These include the cost of selling a house in Virginia, marketing strategy, the level of preparation you need, etc.
Home sellers in the Old Dominion are no longer required to work with only 3% commission realtors to list and sell their houses. You have options now – MLS listing services, discount brokers, FSBO sites, etc. – who work at lower rates. Weigh the pros and cons of each option before you choose one.
- Sell With a Discount Broker: A Virginia discount real estate broker offers all the services similar to a traditional broker at discounted rates. Discount brokers in Virginia charge a 1.5%-2% commission or a $3,000-$5,000 flat rate. They will help you with everything, from listing to closing, and offer decent savings.
- Sell Your Property For Sale By Owner: You can sell your home without a Realtor, independently. You will save the entire 3% listing commission but won’t get MLS access. You can list houses for sale in Virginia on For Sale By Owner website. The best FSBO sites leverage technology to get you listed and connect you with potential buyers directly.
- Sell With a Traditional Realtor: We do not recommend working with a traditional Realtor. They charge a 5%-6% commission and control most aspects of the transaction. However, if you need guidance at every step, work with Virginia Realtors in your area who have expertise in the Virginia housing market.
- Offer Your Home to a Cash Buyer: When it comes to selling a house as is in Virginia, cash home buyers are the go-to option. Virginia cash home buyers offer 30% to 50% of the Fair Market Value and offer flexible closing timelines.
✍️ Pro Tip: Offer your home to an iBuyer if your house is in good condition. iBuyers offer up to 70% of the Fair Market Value and make instant cash offers.
Step 2: Set a Realistic Listing Price
The listing or the asking price is the most important factor for a successful home sale. Typically, the Virginia real estate broker will run comps and help you arrive at an asking price. However, in an FSBO sale, you can use online tools like Zestimate to determine the asking price for your Virginia home.
Do not overprice your home. If you do, your home will spend more days on the market, and buyers may make negative assumptions about it.
On the other hand, underpricing can be a good strategy. Remember, the listing price is not equal to the sale price. The purpose of the listing price is to attract buyers for your home.
You can set the asking price at the lowest price acceptable to you. You might get multiple offers which may lead to a bidding war among buyers. Bidding wars can help you sell at a price higher than what you had in mind. Refer to this informative guide on how to price your home for sale for more such strategies.
Step 3: Market Your Home
A good marketing strategy will help you attract more potential buyers. You can work with a broker to market your home or do it yourself. Here are a few marketing tips that can increase your home sale value substantially:
- Stage Your Home: You can sell your home for up to $40,000 more by staging it. You can either DIY it or work with local Virginia home staging companies. They will rearrange the interiors of your house to make it look spacious and presentable.
- Hire a Real Estate Photographer: With professional real estate photography, you could sell your home in Virginia 32% faster. Professionally clicked pictures will make your property listing pop. It will also help you to market your home to 90% of buyers who search for properties online. Check out the top real estate photographers in Virginia.
- List on MLS: With an MLS listing, you can sell faster and for up to 17% more. Your property listing will also get syndicated to 100+ real estate websites. But, only licensed real estate agents in Virginia have access to the MLS. They charge a 3% commission which can burn a hole in your pocket. You can list your house on MLS in Virginia with Virginia Flat Fee MLS companies. Houzeo will get you listed for $379, and that too within 48 hours.
- List on Free FSBO Websites: Several FSBO sites allow you to list your home on their website for free. Your Virginia property can attract buyer traffic that visits a particular FSBO website. Some examples of free FSBO listing websites in Virginia include Craigslist, Zillow, ForSaleByOwner.com, etc. However, you may attract unverified buyers or scammers as well.
- Post a Yard Sign: With a yard sign, you can attract unrepresented buyers and save the buyer agent commission. Ensure you get a yard sign with your phone number so that the buyers can contact you directly.
- Host Open Houses: In a hot market like Jacksonville or Miami, an open house can be a great way of showing your property to home buyers. Also, you can attract unrepresented buyers.
Step 4: Show Your Home to Potential Buyers
Showings are essential when selling a property in Virginia or anywhere. The more the number of buyers touring your home, the greater the chances of you getting an offer. But this doesn’t mean showings should be inconvenient for you. You can use an online showings management tool like Houzeo Showings.
Houzeo Showings allows you to schedule slots for buyers to tour your Virginia house. Home buyers can also request and reschedule or cancel showings.
Step 5: Negotiate Offers
Interested buyers will send written offers to your agent or directly to you, in case of an FSBO sale. In a seller’s market, buyers might make offers above the list price. But, experts predict 2023 to be a buyer’s market. So, be open to negotiations.
As a seller, you can accept, reject, or counter an offer. A counteroffer is a way of negotiating an offer for better terms or prices. It should be in written format and must have a set timeframe for the buyers to respond. In the counteroffer, you can offer seller concessions, repair credits, etc., in exchange for selling at the list price.
In case of multiple offers, weigh all of them across various merits and do not accept the highest bid right away. You may want to consider the following before accepting an offer amongst multiple offers:
- Mode of payment (cash vs financing)
- Home buyer’s mortgage approval status (pre-approval vs pre-qualified)
- Buyer’s willingness to cover the closing costs in Virginia or some part of it
- Buyer’s willingness to bypass some contingencies like a home appraisal, home inspection in Virginia, etc.
- Closing timeline
In a traditional home sale, a real estate professional will negotiate for you. However, as an FSBO seller in Virginia, you are on your own. In such a situation, you can use digital offer management tools like Houzeo Offers. With Houzeo Offers, you can counter an offer, call for the highest and the best offer, and more.
Step 6: Close the Sale
After the seller accepts an offer, the MLS listing status is changed to “house under contract“. You and the buyer have to complete a lot of tasks from contract to closing. Here are the key milestones in the closing process in Virginia:
Allow the Buyer to Complete the Due Diligence
After you accept an offer, your Virginia property goes off the market, and the buyer can perform the necessary due diligence. The buyer inspects their to-be-home to proceed with the purchase.
Post due diligence, the buyer works on securing a mortgage, known as the underwriting period. During this period, the lender verifies the buyer’s finances and inspects and appraises the property. An amount equivalent to the property’s appraised value is sanctioned to the buyer.
Pay the Closing Costs
As a seller, you will pay 5%-6% in Virginia real estate commissions, equally split between your and the buyer’s agent. Additional seller closing costs in Virginia that you may have to incur include:
- The escrow or the title fee
- Taxes on selling a house in Virginia include the transfer tax, capital gains tax, etc.
- Outstanding HOA dues
- Real estate attorney fees
- Seller credits (if you have offered any).
» Virginia Seller Closing Costs Calculator: Estimate the exact cost to sell a house in Virginia.
Sign the Escrow and Title Documents
This is the final step in the process of selling a home in Virginia. Here, you sign the escrow and title documents needed to sell a house in Virginia. Additionally, you sign the deed and closing disclosure. Ensure you bring two valid ID proofs at the signing.
After the close of the escrow, the new homeowner’s details are registered in the public records. You receive a wire transfer or a check for the final home sale price, and the sale is complete.
The real estate market in Virginia is constantly evolving, and it’s crucial to stay informed to make informed decisions. While March 2023 showed a 2.5% decrease in home prices compared to the previous year, there are still opportunities for both buyers and sellers.
If you’re looking for the best time to sell your house in Virginia, it’s vital to be strategic. Ultimately, timing is crucial in the real estate market, and staying informed about the latest trends can give you a competitive edge. Whether you’re buying or selling, understanding the dynamics of the Virginia real estate market will help you make the best decisions for your investment.
Get on the MLS with a Flat Fee Realtor or a Flat Fee MLS company like Houzeo. With Houzeo, your home will be listed for $379 within 48 hours. Read Houzeo reviews to know what home sellers across Virginia say about Houzeo.
1. What are the current real estate market trends for selling a house in Virginia?
Current real estate market trends in Virginia show a strong seller's market with high demand and limited inventory.
2. Do I need to hire a real estate attorney when selling a house in Virginia?
While it's not required to hire a real estate attorney when selling a house in Virginia, it can be beneficial for legal guidance and contract review.
3. Are there any specific disclosures involved in selling a house in Virginia?
Specific disclosures and inspections required when selling a house in Virginia may include lead-based paint disclosure, radon gas disclosure, and a home inspection. Read this guide on Virginia real estate disclosures to know your disclosure obligations in Virginia.
4. Do you have to pay taxes when you sell your house in Virginia?
Yes, you need to pay the federal capital gains tax, transfer tax, and property tax when selling a property in Virginia.