Selling a Home in Winnetka

Winnetka Jena Radnay May 31, 2023

With pristine sidewalks, green spaces, and the Lake Michigan shoreline in store, Winnetka is a highly prized place to call your own. The community boasts exceptional dining destinations, shopping spots, and numerous parks and trails. If you’re the proud owner of a Winnetka luxury home and planning on moving soon, you might be wondering how you can best position yourself for success. Read on for some top tips from acclaimed Illinois broker Jena Radnay to learn about the selling process and what you can expect.

Preparing your house to sell

Interviewing real estate agents

To find the best agent for your situation, research the local market to find out who the top-producing and most esteemed agents are. It’s a great idea to view sales statistics and testimonials on the agents’ websites and take notice of which agents have the most “For Sale” signs throughout the area.

After narrowing down the list to a handful of agents, interview each one and focus on their recent record of success, their communication skills and can-do attitude, and how they plan to market your home. Once you get a sense of which one is most reliable, you can move forward with confidence.

Thankfully, if you’re selling a Winnetka home, you have access to a leading broker in the North Shore area: Jena Radnay. Jena is ready to provide exceptional levels of service, attention to detail, and a goal-oriented approach to getting your home seen and sold.

Determine your home's value

Once you’ve hired a licensed real estate agent, one of the most important first steps when selling a home in Winnetka is to calculate the fair market value of your luxury home. Your agent will use insightful data as well as their years of experience to price the home competitively and accurately. The primary tool they’ll use is a comparative market analysis (CMA), which will compare the attributes and amenities of your home against similar homes in your neighborhood that are currently on the market or recently sold. Setting a competitive price from the start will help you quickly sell your home for top dollar.

Upgrades to improve your home’s value

It’s a great idea to purchase new smart appliances for the kitchen. Replace outdated lighting elements with energy-efficient fixtures that brighten up the space. Update the bathrooms with new vanities and light fixtures. All of these home improvements will increase the perceived value of your property and make each space look fantastic.

Get the timing right

According to the National Association of Realtors, the real estate industry sees the most buyer activity from May through August. Therefore, it’s a great idea to list your home in the late spring or early summer to take advantage of the increased number of buyers. On the flip side, selling a home in the winter months can pose more of a challenge, as many buyers are hesitant to search for homes in colder weather or as holiday plans approach. That said, your agent will work with you to sell your home effectively in any market condition.

Staging your home and taking photos

To create a gorgeous space, it’s crucial that your home is spotlessly clean. Thoroughly declutter and clean each room from top to bottom, removing any unnecessary knick-knacks and memorabilia that can be distracting to prospective buyers.

It’s also a great idea to freshen up the paint in the interior with a warm neutral color. Stage the space effectively by rearranging the furniture to open up the floor plan, and choose artful decor pieces that create an inviting atmosphere. Then, hire a professional photographer to take several high-quality images for your online listing to compel buyers to take a closer look at your property.

Steps in the selling process

Listing on the MLS

Your agent will post a listing describing your home on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) so that your home reaches the most viewers possible. They will help you write an intriguing listing description that showcases all of your home’s best selling points.

Open houses and virtual tours

When selling a home in Winnetka, it’s a great idea to hold open houses over consecutive weekends. This allows more potential buyers to tour the home and garners interest in your property. If buyers are truly smitten with your home, they may even make an offer on the spot.

Another excellent marketing tactic is to post a virtual tour or a 3D walkthrough as part of your online listing. This will allow buyers to control how they view your home digitally and give them a chance to take a closer look at the property before visiting in person.

Cash vs. traditional offers

You might receive both cash and traditional offers for your property. Cash offers are typically more streamlined for both parties since a buyer won’t need to go through the time-consuming process of obtaining a mortgage, which will speed up the closing. Most buyers, however, will go the traditional route and will need to obtain a mortgage to cover the purchase cost. Of course, sellers should always insist that potential buyers have a letter of pre-approval from a lender to ensure their financing is solid.


Next, a home appraisal is ordered by the mortgage lender to assess the true value of the home. This ensures that the bank is lending only what the home is worth and is typically required for the closing to proceed.


A buyer does not pay the seller directly. Both parties deposit the required funds with a neutral third party until all conditions of the sale are met.

Closing costs

At the end of an average transaction, the seller can expect to pay about eight percent of the sale price in closing costs. These costs include the agent’s commission of five percent, title-related fees, and taxes.

Once you have signed all the official documents, congratulations! Your home is sold, and you are ready to move on to the next milestone in your life.

Work with an expert real estate agent

Are you ready to sell your Winnetka home for higher offers? Reach out to an agent who promises top-tier results and a commitment to success. Jena Radnay is a leading broker in Illinois who is well-versed in North Shore real estate, from Winnetka homes to Glencoe, Wilmette, and Kenilworth. Contact Jena when you’re ready to get started toward your goals.

*Header photo courtesy of Jena Radnay

Work With Jena

Jena Radnay, and the focus of her real estate business, is all about people. Radnay’s love for real estate, houses, marketing, and people have allowed her business to grow organically, albeit explosively, in large part from referrals from her extensive network of contacts and connections.