The best way to sell a home online
Sell a house - find a buyer quickly
Step 1: Create your ad
Before a home is put up for sale, there are a few things you should clarify and prepare important documents for the creation of the ad.
You can also create a free Immowelt user account directly.
You can start your ad at any time, add information and edit existing data.
You can view your synopsis in the preview - you only have to pay after you have published your advertisement.
Good photos are important
You should put extra effort into the photos of your home. After all, these photos are the first impression potential buyers will get of your home.
To arouse his interest, show him the details as well as give him a good overview. To do this, photograph the building from different angles. For such outdoor shots, a blue sky is advantageous, but not a must. Interior shots of the kitchen, bathroom and other rooms also look better in daylight. Special features that you mention in your description should also be shown on photos. So add detailed shots of your fireplace or stucco on the ceiling to your synopsis.
Before you pull out the camera, you should whip up your house: an uncut lawn, untidy rooms and dirty windows do not make a good impression on prospective buyers.
Pay attention to the image size and quality of all photos: Images should not be smaller than 690x518 pixels and are ideally uploaded in landscape format. Images that are too dark should be brightened a little with an image editing program before uploading. After uploading, you can still describe the individual photos. If you name the files appropriately before uploading, you will save yourself this step.
Don't forget your energy certificate
Real estate sellers need an energy performance certificate for their home. Since May 1, 2014, you have also been legally obliged to include certain key figures from this document in real estate advertisements published in commercial media:
- Type of ID (energy requirement ID or energy consumption ID)
- Amount of energy demand or energy consumption
- Information on the energy sources used for heating
- Details of the year of construction of the property
- Information on the energy efficiency class of the house (this value only needs to be listed if the energy certificate was only issued after the EnEV amendment came into force on May 1, 2014)
At the latest at the viewing appointment, you must present the energy certificate to those interested. Even if they don't ask for it. If the house is then sold and a purchase contract is concluded, the ID must be given to the buyer. Sellers who do not adhere to these legal requirements face a fine of up to 15,000 euros.
No energy certificate is required for buildings that are under monument protection.
As a rule, architects, construction technicians, engineers or trained energy consultants can issue an energy pass. You can also order an energy certificate via immowelt.de.Order the energy certificate online
Gather key data
Home sellers need a few more details to run their ads. You should collect the following information about the house:
The living space includes the floor space of all rooms that are used for residential purposes (e.g. hall, living room or bathroom). The areas of winter gardens and other rooms that are closed on all sides, such as sauna or fitness rooms, are also included. Balconies, terraces, roof gardens or loggias may not be added to more than half of the living space. The living space does not include areas in cellars, laundry rooms, floor spaces, drying rooms, boiler rooms and garages. In addition, the following must be deducted from the living space:
- Chimneys and wall projections, free-standing pillars and columns with more than 0.1 square meters that go through the entire height of the room
- Door niches
- Facing walls and cladding, provided that their area is more than 0.1 square meters and they are more than 1.50 meters high
The land area is the value that indicates the total size of a property. The value can be taken from the land register entry or the site plan.
The year of completion of the occupancy is always considered the year of construction of a property. If a house has been completely destroyed, the year of reconstruction counts as the year of construction.
Renovation status of the house
Before selling the house, owners should list the status of renovation in detail: Is the house insulated? How is it heated? When was the last time the windows, electrics or cables were replaced? Etc.
Equipment and features
The equipment of a property includes fixtures that belong to the house (for example the sauna in the basement), but also the quality of the construction and the materials used. Does the house have a garden with a terrace? Has parquet or carpet been laid in the living room? What technology is the house equipped with?
This includes all costs that are regularly incurred and that will be incurred by the new owner after the purchase:
- Water supply costs
- Drainage costs
- Heating costs
- Costs for garbage collection and street cleaning
- Property tax
- Homeowners Insurance
You must also disclose any existing construction and usage restrictions - for example, in the case of buildings that are listed or that have been publicly funded (social housing).
In addition to the important information about the house, you should also have some documents ready for the interested party. These include the Land register extract, the Land map and a Floor plan drawing of the individual floors. It is best to prove investments and modernizations with invoices. Is there a Calculation of living space or a Appraisal before, these papers must of course not be missing. As a rule, the building insurance is also transferred to the new owner, so the building insurance policy should also be kept ready. Because: Complete and meaningful documents make an impression and help with the house sale.
Step 2: Publish your ad
Your user account at immowelt.de has been created and you have compiled all the important documents. You can now place the online ad.
Ad capture tips:
- If the texts and images are already prepared, the capture is faster.
- A total of 25 images can be uploaded.
- If you are already a customer at immowelt.de and have an account, it is advisable to log in before you place the online ad. This is how you can cache your data.
- Displaying the home seller's phone number is optional. This is only visible in the display if you click on the "Show phone number" button.
- You can edit your advertisement at any time - even after it has been published - add information or correct information.
That's how it's done:
1. Click the button place an ad, at the top of this page.
2. First wear under the tab Generally all the key data for your property: What type of property is it? In which place is the property located? You must also give your synopsis a heading. Describe briefly and concisely what defines your house. For example: detached house with terrace in a prime location
3. Under the tab Dates & description you can now describe your property in more detail. You have already gathered the information:
- Both Basic data you can enter information on living space, property area, year of construction or the number of rooms. You can also specify the desired sales price. Here you should also list the characteristic values from the energy certificate. In addition, information on the building structure and energy as well as on equipment features can be provided. Predefined lists are available for this, in which you only have to tick the relevant items.
- Under description you have enough space to describe your property in detail in your own words. You can also provide information on viewing appointments.
4. It continues with the rider Investments. Here you can now add images and PDF documents such as the energy certificate or embed a YouTube video. The first image is displayed in the search results list. It should be the best and most meaningful, after all, prospective buyers see this image first when they search on immowelt.de and when they search for an email.
5. Once all images have been uploaded and all fields filled out, you can publish the advertisement. If you are publishing an advertisement on immowelt.de for the first time, you have to register beforehand. If you are already a customer, you have to log in at this point. You can now also decide whether your ad should be published immediately or at a later date.
Choose a suitable advertising duration: A house sells faster if it is offered in good condition, in a popular location and at a realistic price. Most houses, however, are offered for at least 3 months until the right buyer is found.
Then select your preferred payment method from various options. Payment is only made when the ad is activated.
Step 3: find buyers
Selling a house usually takes a lot longer than renting it out. Of course, factors such as the equipment, the conditions under which the house is offered and the region also play a role. Once a buyer has been found, continue with the following steps:
1. Notary prepares sales contract
The notary draws up the draft of a sales contract and agrees it with the parties involved. The sales contract must state who the buyer and seller are and which house is being sold. The contract must therefore contain a building description, the location, a description of the property and an extract from the land register. The exact purchase price and the due date must also be listed. The bank account on which the payment is received must also be named. It is also advisable to define a warranty disclaimer for unknown defects in the contract. As a rule, there is no right of withdrawal once the sales contract has been signed. It is therefore important to clarify the circumstances under which the buyer can still withdraw. If the handover date is not met, a contractual penalty can be asserted, provided it has been contractually stipulated.
2. Notary declares contract
Because land purchase contracts are very complex, the legislature has provided that everyone involved in the sale of a house is advised independently by a notary. Before signing the contract, the notary reads the exact wording of the contract and explains to both parties any points that could cause confusion.
3. Entry in the land register
In order for the property to be effectively transferred from the seller to the buyer, an entry in the land register is necessary. However, because this can take some time, the notary first has the so-called notice of conveyance entered in the land register. The house cannot be sold again with this notice. If the buyer has paid the purchase price as well as the land transfer tax, the new owner is entered in the land register.
The handover - that must be taken into account
During the handover, you as the seller should create a detailed handover protocol. In this way, you can protect yourself from additional demands by buyers after the house has been sold.
With the house, the seller must also hand over all associated documents to the new owner. Acceptance reports and documents, for example on the heating system, should also be handed over. You should note all documents submitted in the handover protocol.
Important: The key should never be handed over until you have received the full purchase price.
Rights and obligations when selling a home
When selling a house, there are certain rights and obligations on both sides:
Buyer's Rights and Obligations
- If the key to the property has already been given to the buyer before the transfer of ownership in the land register, he will be the owner of the property from this point in time. He is therefore also liable for any deterioration in the property.
- The notarial purchase contract is binding and obliges the buyer to take over the property including all tax obligations and burdens. Even if he has not received the necessary funding to purchase it.
Rights and obligations of the seller
- The seller must not conceal known defects in the property.
- If the buyer fails to meet his obligation to accept the purchased property and to pay the purchase price, the seller may have the right to reverse the property purchase contract and to claim damages.
Costs to the seller
Normally the costs for the notary and entry in the land register are borne by the buyer. However, the home seller could face the so-called speculation tax on the profit made through the sale. This is the case if the house that you do not use has been your property for less than ten years.
Exception: Before you sell the house, you as the owner lived in the house yourself for at least two years. Then the special regulation for personal use takes effect and you are exempt from tax.
Selling a house with or without an agent?
Often times, owners hire a realtor to sell their home. This can have a number of advantages: Real estate professionals relieve owners of the enormous amount of work and organization involved in a sale. They are also marketing experts, know the market and help to determine a realistic sales price.
If a broker is hired, it can be freely decided who pays the commission. In many cases they are borne by the buyer or both parties share them. Depending on the region, the broker's commission is between three and seven percent of the purchase price plus VAT.
Here you can search for the right broker in your region if you want to sell your house.
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