How To Maximize The Sale of Your Home
As a seller, one of the main objectives is to make your home look as nice as possible so it will sell quickly and for a high price. By thoroughly preparing your home for the market, your real estate agent will see how serious you are about selling. This will motivate him or her to get the price that you want.
You and your agent are in this together. Each side has to pull their own weight and support one another throughout the process.
Make It A Model Home
A model home is clean, organized, and has an immaculate appearance. It has plenty of light coming through the windows, calming music in the background, and lights turned on. You want buyers to see your home at its best. Model homes are adored by others because they’re well-decorated and landscaped.
All personal items, especially personal hygiene products, must be out of the picture. It helps buyers picture themselves and their possessions in the home.
Adding accessories and furniture can make your home more attractive. If you need some ideas/inspiration, then visit some local model homes.
Most buyers will check out a lot of homes before buying. If the outside isn’t well-kept, many won’t even bother to look inside. If done right, curb appeal will create greater interest in your home. Here are some tips:
- make repairs where needed
- plant new flowers
- get a new welcome mat
- mow the grass and trim the hedges
- sweep and wash walkways/driveway
- remove weeds and plant flowers
- rake leaves in the fall
- melt ice and shovel snow in the winter
- replace burned out light bulbs
- for sale sign should be clearly visible to traffic
- clean light fixtures
- wash windows
- cut off dead branches
- keep the garage door closed
First impressions aren’t always everything, but they are when selling a home. Many buyers will already form an opinion of the house within the first 10 seconds or so. For this reason, the entrance area is critical. It should be clean, organized, and can be decorated with the likes of artwork, plants, flowers, rugs, etc.
Adding color is a very simple and inexpensive way to bring some energy and excitement to a room. Contrasting colors are effective for highlighting a particular area. Some experts just recommend sticking with neutral colors because they appeal to the largest number of buyers.
Another way to add life to a room is by mixing smooth and rough textured fabrics, decorations, rugs, and accessories.
When showing a home, experts recommend turning on all lights. Allow as much natural light to enter through the windows as possible. Try to have a centerpiece or main feature in every room, whether it be a piece of artwork or furniture.
Arrange furniture in the most space efficient way possible to make rooms feel larger than they appear.
The amount of decorating magazines, books, and websites are almost infinite if you need ideas (see bottom of page).
If you aren’t the decorating type, then perhaps a family member or friend that can help. Hiring a professional is always an option as well.
Hiring A Design Professional
Talk to family, friends, check the yellow pages, internet, or ask a relocation expert for recommendations. Look for a designer that has a personality and style that is similar to yours. A designer can help you choose window coverings, furniture, accessories, and other items that are only available to the design community.
Home staging is most often done by sellers living in highly competitive housing markets to make their homes stand out. Some homeowners will literally clean out their entire house and rent all new furniture and accessories to create a model home.
Luxury home builders often decorate the homes they’re showing with new furniture. They often sell this furniture and other accessories at discount rates to attract more people. This is a very cheap way to get furniture for staging your home.
The objective of staging a home is to make it look new again. This involves cleaning, decluttering, and making all necessary repairs and replacements.
- squeaky doors and drawers
- non-functioning items
- repaint walls if necessary
- broken tiles
- burned out light bulbs
- windows with cracked vacuum seals
- worn carpet old hand towels
- all light fixtures
- high ledges
- refrigerator appliances
- remove any magnets and papers hanging on the refrigerator
- take all personal items out of the bathroom and place them into a drawer
- neatly organize dishes, glassware, books, and knickknacks
- declutter all shelves and counter tops
Assist The Appraiser
To get the highest appraisal, help the appraiser as much as possible. Make their life easier by supplying the following information:
- latest property tax bill
- property deed
- list of home improvements
- personal property that will stay with the house
- copy of homeowner’s association manual
- blueprints of house
- realtor’s brochure or sales sheet
- survey/plan of house and land
- recent sales in the neighborhood
- highlights and amenities
Hold An Agent’s Preview
Having an agent’s preview at your home is highly advised, as it allows local real estate agents to see it firsthand. In a healthy housing market, you can expect around a dozen agents to attend. The more, the merrier.
This might go without saying, but a real estate agent plays a huge role in how fast a house sells. They’re the ones with the resources to find the most qualified buyers. Some people balk at paying real estate agents. In my opinion, they’re worth every cent in most cases.
Review the Sales Sheet
Sales sheets are typically placed in the box attached to the For Sale sign. Make sure that all the information is accurate and complete. Restock the box with more sheets when needed. The exclusions section is very important. All items that are not staying with the home must be listed. This may include appliances, decorations, curtains, cabinets, and so on.
One of the best ways to make your home accessible is through a lock box. This allows your real estate agent to show the house when you’re not around. You never know when someone will want to see your home. Those who come from out of town and might only get to see it once in person.
Make yourself scarce during a showing. Hanging around will only make everyone feel uncomfortable. Let the real estate agent do their job. Be sure that any important documents (offers on the house) are hidden and that pets are contained in the garage or outside in a cage.
Less expensive homes in an area will always sell first, unless that most expensive one has unique qualities that separate it from the others.
The top selling features today are the master bedroom and the kitchen.
Four bedroom, three bathroom homes with an office are very appealing in today’s market, especially for families.
A well-priced home will usually sell faster; listen to your real estate agent, they usually know best.
Always keep your house well-maintained once it’s up for sale. You never know when your house will be shown.