Seller Resources

The Start of Our 25 Point Proven Best Seller Plan includes these and

Ask anyone who has tried to sell their home lately in Gardner, and they'll tell you how tough it is. More than 500 homes in Gardner didn’t sell last year.  

Do you know why?  We do, and we’d like to help you avoid the mistakes that will keep your Gardner home from selling.

The days of putting your home on the market in the morning above value and having three offers by the afternoon won't return for several years, so sellers must amplify their efforts to get their homes sold at a good price.

How many Gardner homes were marketed in your area that didn’t sell?

Do you know why?

Ask  a friend or neighbor about selling their home.

What did their Realtor do to market their home?

Chances are, you’ll hear about the initial meeting, then the pictures, the sign in the yard....and then, the waiting.

The waiting, the waiting, the waiting....

Before you worry about selling for top dollar....a quick question....

Why are YOU Selling?

Ask yourself, “Why do I want to sell ….and what happens next?”

For example, your reasons for selling might include:
Relocation for your business
Searching for a new school district....
Does your situation require the time frame in which you’d like to sell or a particular profit margin? Are you “upside down” on your mortgage?
Are you looking to move up and get a bigger home?
Are looking to downsize?

Whether you’re selling because of a need or want, we’ll help you map the right strategy to achieve your objectives and set a realistic time frame for the sale.

Kansas City home seller by Keller Williams
STEP - 1 CHOOSE A Gardner REALTOR - Aren’t ALL Realtors created equal?

When asked, both Buyers and Sellers will tell you that the best and worst decision they made is the choice of Realtors.

We’re all the same, right?  Well, we’re all PAID the same way, and roughly the same amount. That’s correct, amateurs and professionals are compensated exactly the same.

Do you want a 22 year veteran professional REATOR on their side...or YOUR side?

More than 88.3% of all home buyers start their search on the Internet....Before you decide to work with a Realtor, or decide to “go it alone”....Ask yourself two questions.

-Who is more likely to put your home in front of the buying public; as well as, potential Buyer’s Agents?

-What does “For Sale By Owner” say to a Buyer’s Agent....or a prospective Buyer?

Access to MLS, MLS updates, competitive information, Realtor Property Resource, and other helpful data is not granted to the non-licensee public for a specific reason. The owner of the listing data is the...SELLER.

The listing Broker doesn’t own the data, they are simply licensed to use it for the specific purpose of selling the home.

The MLS restricts access to prevent the use of the data for any purpose other than the sale of the home. “FSBO” tells Buyer’s Agents that the Seller is either unable or unwilling to pay a commission. Simply put, most Buyer’s Agents will choose the path of least resistance, and choose to show homes listed in a more traditional manner.

So you decided to use a Realtor...Now what?

Get a referral from a friend, family memeber or trusted advisor. Another way to find a REALTOR is to do a Google Search for your area. Good search terms include...”Name of Your City” Real Estate, or “Name of Your City” Homes for Sale. You might even try the “Name of your Subdivision, plus Real Estate, like South Hampton Real Estate. Stay away from paid advertisers, they may not be the best Realtors for your area, simply those willing to pay the most that month for advertising.

Then get prepared to interview a couple of Realtors. We all have different styles, different marketing strategies, years of experience, and the type of properties we’re marketing.

I can tell you with certainty that the Real Estate agent you select will have the most impact on whether you enjoy the sales process, or absolutely hate it. We all hold the same license, so how do you tell us apart?

It’s amazing how little thought goes into selecting the individual who will have a tremendous impact on your financial future.  When people need a window cleaner, home remodeler, attorney, or or a host of other trades they do their proper research.  Do your research, and the entire process will be a happy, profitable series of events.

There are several key traits that successful Realtors share.These include the ability to price a home properly, an effective marketing plan, and outstanding communication skills.

We all think our home is better than the home that just sold down the street. Most common mistake is to choose the Realtor who offers the highest listing price. Carefully, carefully review the data....Price the home to sell from Day#1.  Price your home high and then you’ll find yourself chasing the market trying to lower the price enough in order to sell. If you'd price the home correctly from the start, you'll attract the most serious "Top Dollar" buyers.

Pricing a home for sale

Many homeowners make their biggest mistake by going with the Realtor that gives them the highest price. BIG MISTAKE.  

Because selling your home is a highly emotional decision, there is a segment of our industry that will focus on selling to your emotions, rather than delivering the basic information that justifies their advice.

Choose your Gardner Realtor carefully.  It will be the single most important decision you make in the home-selling process.

How do you tell the Dud from the Superstar? Ask them, they’ll tell you...  
1) How long have you been selling homes in (City)? Realtor turnover in our area runs 80% per year. Find someone who’s been around for awhile....
2) How many listings have you sold in the past 12 months? The greater the productivity, the more current the experience level...
3) What is your average list price to sales price ratio? The greater the difference between these numbers, the less likelihood the homes are selling quickly. Why price your home too high and try to sell effectively?
4) Who does the marketing?
5) Can you provide me with 3 references? Hey, their mom, best friend and brother-in-law don’t count here.
6) How will you market my home? I’ve got a plan, my plan is designed to deliver an offer within 30 days....Why wait it out for “average days in your subdivision”? Call me for details
7) Do you have a website or a marketing plan? A great agent has a plan, a website is a tool in the plan, but not the plan itself.
8) Do you have a blog? A blog is the home for dynamic information regarding the market, shows the Realtor understands the local real estate market well enough to teach the details, not import data from someone else’s website.
9) Do you use social media? If the Realtor can be easily found, so can your HOME. Is the image upbeat, funny, informative...or dry, factual, distant?
10) Will you help me stage my home? One chance to make a first that are staged correctly and photograph well, are shown more often, and attract top dollar.
11) What connections do you have in the community to help me get things done around the home? The best Realtors are the most connected people in the community...Can help you save time and money finding the right people to complete tasks quickly and effectively.
12) Do you network? Professional realtors network continually, always looking for the next most popular channel to effectively market your home.
13) What kind of feedback will I get? Do you have to chase the Realtor? Is the only news good news? Will you email me feedback?

STEP - 2 GATHER THE INFORMATION TO SELL YOUR GARDNER HOME- Why not just jump in with a sign?

Before we talk strategy, we’ve got some work to do. Let’s talk paperwork.

A competent, professional REALTOR will start with a combination of the following....Title work, current appraisal, warranties, list of improvements, HOA documents, deed restrictions, easements, mortgage statement....Whew, a lot to remember!

These details provide a prospective Buyer, or Buyer’s Agent, with the information to say “YES”!  We strongly encourage our Sellers to seriously consider a pre-listing whole home inspection, as well as a pre-listing appraisal.

Anytime we talk about profit....we talk about the COST to sell your home!

Costs traditionally include Title Cost, Closing Fee, Taxes, Commissions, Marketing, County and State Recording Fees covers most of the basics.

As a business person, I’m aware that the highest gross sales price means little, it’s the “Net” sales price, the dollars in my wallet that defines the success or failure  Your Realtor should be able to outline the basic costs to sell your home and deliver a strategy to maximize your net sales price.

Selling your home is serious business, do it wrong and you’ll pay by taking too long and losing at the closing table.

Mentally prepare to MOVE!

You’ve assembled the right team, you’ve got the paperwork together, you’re ready to talk PRICE! That is right, choose your REALTOR before you talk price. Not the other way around.


Sellers often get confused that lots of showings means that buyers are interested in their home.

We touched on this earlier, but it bears repeating...Price your home to sell from Day #1...
WHY, you ask?

Simple! Pricing your home higher than the fair market value tells potential Buyers you're hoping to find someone uninformed enough, to offer more than the home is worth. While you might find a Buyer or Buyer’s Agent who fits one of these categories, there is someone tied to the sales process that knows too much, owns too much data to get the wool pulled over their eyes.

Who decides the value of your home? You?...nope.

A potential Buyer?....maybe.

The appraiser representing the Buyer’s Lender?....YES! DING DING DING!

Pricing the home correctly starts with a Neighborhood Market Report.

Real estate is local, the Neighborhood Market Report compares a variety of comparable homes and delivers pricing recommendations based on square foot costs, cost per bedroom, is is an excellent resource for hard to place homes, or homes without comparable sales during the past 12 months. Next step is the Property Analysis Report. This compares comparable homes of same type and style as your home.  Comparable homes share similar floor plans, number of bedrooms and baths, garage stalls, lot sizes, etc. Finally, based on a thorough review of comparable homes, you’re ready to price your home. Your Realtor should find it simple to deliver a Property Analysis Report, based on your home, and the similarities, or differences, between your home and the direct competition.

Finally, remember that Buyer’s, Buyer’s Agents, and Appraisers aren’t looking at at the competition’s Listing prices.  They don’t care what your competition is asking for their homes. And in point of fact, it doesn’t matter what anyone is asking...

Why? Because most people price their homes too high, and lower them to sell.

You’re smarter than that, and knowing HOW you’re going to win will keep you from the frustration that your neighbors will feel.

They care about what the homes are SELLING for....and  so should YOU!
What is the #1 mistake an amateur REALTOR would make when pricing your home?

They ignore the listing prices of those homes that did not sell.  If you want to gather some quick data that would quickly let you know “how high is too high”....just check out the list prices of homes that didn’t sell.

Your pricing strategy will reflect the upgrades and deficiencies of your home compared to your competition and designed to deliver maximum traffic in the first 4-6 weeks.

STEP - 4 MARKETING YOUR GARDNER HOME IS BOTH A SCIENCE AND AN ART? - Isn’t it just a sign in the yard?

So you’ve chosen an outstanding GARDNER REALTOR, done your homework, priced your home effectively....what happens next?

The whole enchilada! Though 88.3% of all Buyers start with the internet, your Realtor needs to get it all in!

Sign in Yard, Multiple Listing Service (MLS), websites, Blogsites, Third Party Syndicators, Bookmarking sites, Online Advertising, Online Display Advertising, Online Brochure, wow!
Syndicating real estate

On top of all of this, you need maximum impact through weeks 1-6....
Real Estate is like fishing
Marketing your home is a lot like fishing.... Which does a fisherman have a better chance of catching the most fish? One hook or with ten hooks?

Of course with 10 hooks, right?
Just like fishing, we will market your home on many advertsing channels.
I wonder how many of those homes that did not sell, could not be found online beyond the basic online marketing? Many perhaps.

No client of the Dowell Family Team has ever said that they could not find their home online.

STEP 5 - PREPARING YOUR GARDNER HOME - “We were told a quick cleaning was all we needed...”

“If a car is worth $2,500 dirty, it will be worth $3,000 cleaned up” - Donald Trump.

We’re “courting” the buyer and the Buyer’s you really get a second date if the first date was a disaster?


Did you know that most Realtors handle staging their listings like their outdated Glamour Shot photos they use on their business cards?

The disconnect happens when the Buyer walks into your home and BAM!
That really cool wide angle shot that made your kitchen look HUGE....delivers let down instead of an offer.

Great pictures of your REAL home matter!

Your Realtor can advise the need for a professional stager, or if your property will sell well on its own.

All of the small repairs, etc., that were identified back in Step 2, working on the correct home value and price. Make those repairs, as well an address any issues related to the pre-listing inspection and let’s get started.

There will be some issues that are best left to the Buyer to identify, or YOU, the Seller, may not be able to address based on budget issues, etc.  

Photography- Most properties benefit from the support of a professional photographer. The photos delivered come in two forms, high and low resolution, and may be used for web applications, brochures, magazine spreads, incorporated into a Virtual Tour. Don’t scrimp on photos....most of the online traffic is drawn into the home via these important tools.

Staging- Many homes benefit from the support of a professional stager, but some types of homes derive little boost in effective marketing through staging. Your Realtor should have a good perspective, given a thorough overview of the competitive homes, as you learned when you developed your pricing strategy.

Review of deficiencies - Take out that list of differences between your home, and the others you viewed. Add to that any deferred maintenance, ”Honey=Do’s” and “Realtor Do’s” get the point. If it’s within the budget, fix it.

The homes that show the best and are priced corectly, sell first!

Many potential home buyers will not overlook deferred maintenance issues. Those that do overlook the deferred maintenance issues will discount their offers by more than the actual repairs. The buyer doesn’t want to do repair the deferred maintenance issues anymore than you.

Need help staging and repairing deferred maintenance issues? We can help.

STEP 6 – RECEIVE AN OFFER ON YOUR GARDNER HOME - Why should I plan on how to respond to an offer?

Our Marketing Plan is designed to deliver multiple offers within 30 days. We believe a well advertised home that is properly priced and in a desirable area will have multiple offers.  

It is our goal to create a Multiple offer situation because they always benefit the seller.  

When a buyer decides they like your home, they will make you a written offer. Verbal offers are typically not offers at all...just a conversation. Your real estate agent will advise you as to whether or not the prospective buyer is qualified to purchase your home. After all, who needs to review an offer from a buyer that is unable to buy it? After determining the buyer’s qualifications, we will review the written contract, taking care to understand what is required of both parties to execute the transaction. The contract should protect the interests of all parties. After you accept the offer, it may be too late to make any changes. The contract, though not limited to this list, should include the following:

  1. Legal description of the property
  2. Offer price
  3. Down payment
  4. Financing arrangements
  5. List of fees and who will pay them
  6. Deposit amount
  7. Inspection rights and possible repair allowances
  8. Method of conveying the title and who will handle the closing
  9. Appliances and furnishings that will stay with the home
  10. Settlement date
  11. Contingencies
  12. Remember that the legalities of this phase are very important. If you have any questions or concerns, be certain to address them with us right away.

Our objective is to produce multiple offers....which is always beneficial to the seller!


Most offers to purchase your home will require some negotiating to come to a win-win agreement. Fair?

We are well versed on the intricacies of the contracts used in your area and will protect your best interest throughout the bargaining. We also know what each contract clause means, what you will net from the sale and what areas are easiest to negotiate. We will review the written offer with you to make sure you thoroughly understand what the buyers are offering and what they are asking you for in return. Some negotiable items:

  1. Price
  2. Financing
  3. Closing costs
  4. Repairs
  5. Appliances and fixtures
  6. Landscaping
  7. Painting
  8. Occupancy time frame
  9. Once both parties have agreed on the terms of the sale, we will prepare a contract. Remember…bargaining is not a winner-take-all deal. It is a business process that involves compromise and mutual respect.

STEP 8 – SERVICE PROVIDERS - Every contractor is the same, right?

Once you accept an offer to sell your house you will need to make a list of all the things you and your buyer must do before closing. The property may need to be formally appraised, surveyed, inspected or repaired. Depending on the specifics reached during the negotiations, you may pay for all, some or none of these items. If each procedure returns acceptable results as defined by the contract, then the sale may continue. If there are problems with the home, the terms set forth in the contract will dictate your next step. Depending on the contract, you or the buyer may decide to walk away, open a new round of negotiations or close.

Don’t worry about repairs . . . Once we have come to terms, we have contractors that can help.

STEP 9 – PRE-CLOSE PREPARATION - Hey we’re closing, what else can happen?

Plenty.  Avoiding trouble is important...No premature ejubulation.

Don’t get happy too quickly, a smart Buyer’s Agent will use all available data to their advantage, all the way through closing.

Walkthrough & Follow-through - 75% of the real estate transactions that don’t close on time, fail because of failed communication and a lack of follow-up.

A few days before the closing we will contact the entity that is closing the transaction and make sure the necessary documents are going to be ready to sign on the appropriate date. It would be a shame to get this close to selling and have the deal fall through because of a missing form.


“Closing” refers to the meeting where ownership of the property is legally transferred to the buyer. We will be present during the closing to help explain the process and forms to you and make sure everything goes as planned. By being present during the closing, we can mediate any last minute issues that may arise. As the seller, you will need to be prepared to hand over any necessary documentation regarding the property and, depending on the arrangements made during negotiations, you may be required to have done something specific in order to close. Be sure to read all the documents and ask questions. It is important you understand every document you are signing.


Congratulations on the successful sale of your home! Now that you have closed, prepare to vacate your home in the time frame agreed upon. You should make a list of all the items you will need to do to turn the property over to the new owners. For example, make sure to cancel electricity, gas, lawn care, cable, etc., or if the new owner is going to retain some of the services, change the name on the account. The home and all items specified by the contract should be prepared appropriately for the new owners.

By using this 11 Step Blueprint and our 25 Point Seller Plan for Selling Your Kansas City Home, you'll get the results you wanted when you chose to sell your home.

Your Gardner Real Estate Team

Get a positive, helpful partner for selling a Gardner home:

  • Trusted resource for answers about the home selling process
  • Innovative marketing strategies
  • Knowledgeable and Savvy about area neighborhood real estate stats and features
  • Powerful negotiation skills
  • Skill and Support through the closing and beyond

    Dowell Family Team
    (913) 712-9313