In order to find an interested buyer who wants to make an offer on your home, you will may have to allow multiple or even dozens of groups of people to walk through your home for tours. They likely will not spend more than a few minutes in the home, but they will instantly make decisions about the home based on its appearance. Broad factors, such as the floor plan and style, will be considered. Other factors, such as its overall condition, its age, its cleanliness and more, may also come into play during their brief time in the home. With this in mind, you should focus your attention on a few key points to make the best impression possible when selling your property.
Clean Up the Yard
Curb appeal is critical when listing a home for sale. It is instantly noticeable in online photos when others are deciding whether to schedule a tour. It also makes an impression on visitors when they arrive at the home and walk up to the door. Ensure that the lawn is mowed and well-maintained. Keep flower beds weeded and mulched. Trim trees and bushes to create a neat, tidy appearance.
Make the Entryway Inviting
Likewise, the entryway is equally critical. You want this space to be clean and inviting so that visitors are instantly impressed with the space. Power wash the front patio. Ensure light fixtures and door hardware is modern and in good condition. Add a new doormat for added appeal.
Re-Paint the Walls
The walls are among the most noticeable features in the home, and they garner instant attention. They ideally should be a neutral, light shade as this is more appealing to many people and can brighten the space up. Consider spending a few days repainting walls before you list your home, if necessary.
Remove the Clutter
Clutter can make your home look dirty, disorganized and smaller than it really is. You will need to remove your clutter when you physically move out of the home, so get a head start and do it now. Go through each room individually, and clean out drawers, cabinets and closets. Leave counters, dressers and other surfaces completely free of items, and remove unnecessary furnishings to create the feeling of more space.
Clean the Home Thoroughly
There are few things that can instantly turn a buyer off more easily than dirt and mildew. Take time to shampoo and steam your carpets. Remove all signs of mildew from the bathroom. Clean ceiling fans, baseboards, the stove, vent covers and more. The home should be spotless when you list it for sale.
Let the Light Shine In
Natural light is critical to creating a beautiful, inviting space. Remove the screens on your windows. Clean the windows on the interior and exterior. Trim tree branches and bushes away from windows to allow more light to enter the home.
Focus on the Smell
The smell of a home is often unnoticed by the homeowner who has become accustomed to the home’s odor, but it can instantly hit anyone else who walks in the home. Particularly troublesome are pet odors, cigarette smoke and strong food odors. Ask a friend to honestly describe the smell in your home, and take action to improve it if necessary before you list the home for sale.
It can take several weeks or longer to fully prepare your home for the market. By taking these steps, you can ensure that your home is presented to buyers in the best possible light.
Choosing the right agent:
Getting your property sold for the most money possible is a huge job that could affect you for years to come. With that in mind, choosing a realtor because they are a friend-of-a-friend could be a very bad idea. It is also a mistake to hire an agent just because he/she promises to sell your home for more money than other agents—it’s a common strategy for some agents to overinflate the projected selling price just to get your listing. That leaves your house on the market for longer than it should have been and you end up dropping the price to what it should have been form the beginning.
It is best to choose an agents who consistently monitors the MLS, knows what properties are going to be listed, and that have a good working knowledge of the comps in the area. A tech savvy agent has many tools to get your property sold!
Don’t over upgrade:
Quick fixes before selling always payoff. Mammoth makeovers, not so much. You probably won’t get your money back if you do a huge improvement project before you put your house on the market. Instead do updates that will pay off and get you top dollar—get a fresh coat of paint on the walls, replace door handles, cabinet hardware, make sure closet doors are on the tracks, clean the grout out of tiles and fix any leaky faucets.
Take the home out of your house:
One of the most important things to do is de-personalize it. The more personal stuff is in your house, the less the potential buyer will be able to imagine themselves living there. Get rid of a third of your stuff—put it in storage. This includes family photos, memorabilia, collections, and personal keepsakes. Consider hiring a home stager, or learning some staging tricks on your own for proper placement of furniture to optimize the appeal of the room/house.
The first impression is the only impression:
No matter how good the interior of your home looks, buyers have already judged your home before they ever walk in the door. You never get a second chance to make a first impression. It’s important to make people feel warm, welcome, and safe as they approach the house. Spruce up your home’s interior with inexpensive shrubs and brightly colored flowers. You can typically get a 100% return on your money you put into curb appeal. Entry ways are important—a small bench, a vase of fresh cut flowers, or even cookies can go a long way!
Price to sell!
It would be nice if you could price your home based on what you will need to buy your next home, pay your moving expenses, and maybe even have a little leftover, but it doesn’t always work out that way. You can control the asking price, but you cannot control the selling price—the market does. And if you price too high, it will cost you more in the long run. Overpriced homes sit on the market and tend to end up selling for less than the homes that were priced at market value from the beginning.
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