Our Guide to Selling Your Home
No matter what your reason for selling, remember that the process of preparing a home for sale can take up to a month or more. We are here to help you start!
Take a Fresh Look at Your Home!
Just because your home looks great to you, that doesn’t automatically mean it will look great to a buyer — so take a fresh look at your dwelling. Leave your home, come around the block and attempt to see your home as a prospective buyer will see it — for the first time. Consider what’s called “curb appeal”: Does it need washing or painting? Does the driveway need repair? Is the landscaping inviting? What about the view from the front yard? (Remember… be very critical, as you can be certain your buyer will be.) Then, walk inside and inspect the interior as though seeing it for the first time. Take a tour and imagine what your real estate agent might say about each room; look into cabinets; open doors; check out the bathrooms and make a list of the things that might put off potential buyers. Compare that to a second list of the things that initially attracted you to the dwelling and attempt to reconcile the two. Remember: Your home has been a great place for you but a potential buyer will see things that you don’t and may not have your taste.
De-Clutter Before You List!
Get rid of clutter in every area: Closets, attic, kitchen cabinets and drawers, bathroom vanities, shelves and bookcases. Remember: This is not the time to be sentimental and potential buyers react unfavorably to clutter and personal items and don’t forget the furniture! Most of us put too much into too little space, with the result being a potential buyer will think your home is too small. Box up personal items and take them to a storage unit or tuck neatly into an attic or basement, away from the eyes of potential buyers. What to do with all the stuff you don’t need? Have a moving sale and use the proceeds for paint and/or any other materials you need for repair projects.
To Sell, Sell, Sell? Clean, Clean, Clean!
After you have de-cluttered, cleaned, shined, mowed, repaired, painted and whipped your property into shape, it’s now time to attract a buyer! Here are a few other things you must do to attract buyers: Even if it’s bright daylight, open the blinds and turn on all the lights open all interior doors to make the home appear roomier; remove all your kids and pets (They’re cute, but a prospect wants to see your home, not your pride and joy!) clean your pet’s litter box so the home smells clean and fresh, not like air freshener.
Make Repairs: They Pay Off
After you’ve cleaned the place top-to-bottom, inside-and-out, the next project is making all the repairs necessary to attract a buyer. Outside: Patch the roof; touch up paint; repair screens; address any porch framing issues; trim, mow, edge and water the lawn; landscape beds and get rid of sick or dying plants. Inside: fix grout in the bathrooms and on tile floors; adjust any doors that need it; fix any scratches on the walls; fix any plumbing problems. Remember, do what your home needs BEFORE the first buyer appears at your door AND before getting the real estate broker to make the first listing. A good agent will always advise you on what ELSE needs to be done so it is good to address most issues prior to engaging an agent. Another great resource is your friends. They may be able to be honest with you and point out issues to fix to help get the best price possible for your home!
Show It to Sell It!
After you have de-cluttered, cleaned, shined, mowed, repaired, painted and whipped your property into shape, it’s now time to attract a buyer! Here are a few other things you must do to attract buyers: Even if it’s bright daylight, open the blinds and turn on all the lights; open all interior doors to make the home appear roomier; remove all your kids and pets (They’re cute, but a prospect wants to see your home, not your pride and joy!); clean your pet’s litter box so the home smells clean and fresh, not like air freshener.
Also, remember that you need to be ready to show your home with as little notice as possible. That means less than an hour, or even five minutes, if possible, so upkeep is key!
Get a Sense of the Market
Before you put your home on the market, take a weekend day to properly check out the competition. (Homes with similar prices and in similar neighborhoods…) Remember: You don’t have to buy new furniture to look like that beautifully furnished model in the gorgeous new development. What you want is the FEEL of that new model: Clean, uncluttered, spacious and fresh! Please remember: After location, the MOST IMPORTANT item to a buyer is a WELL-MAINTAINED home!