Amy Uliss' Blog
The good news about selling your home is that everything does not have to be absolutely perfect to attract buyers!
Although some prospective buyers may be sticklers for things like cleanliness, the condition of appliances, and the amount of available storage space, perfection is rarely a requirement.
Since most house hunters are primarily focused on finding a house that offers them value, practicality, and affordability, a few minor flaws here and there are usually not going to be deal breakers.
One of your primary objectives as a house seller is to present your home in its best possible light -- both literally and figuratively. All things being equal, the home that looks the most inviting, well cared for, and tastefully decorated will have a decided edge in the real estate market. Fortunately, there are a lot of inexpensive, relatively easy things you can do to make your home more appealing to prospective buyers.
Keeping your kitchen and bathrooms immaculately clean almost always gives you an advantage when your house is on the market. The only way cleanliness can potentially work against you is when your home reeks of harsh cleaning chemicals and artificial room deodorizers. One solution is to use cleansers with a mild citrus fragrance that will create a clean, fresh-smelling environment that won't be offensive to people's sense of smell.
Since kitchens are a focal point for many house hunters, it pays to devote some extra attention to preparing that part of your home for showings. In addition to making sure all counter tops, appliances, and floors are spotless, crystal clear windows and natural light can go a long way toward enhancing the look and feel of your kitchen.
Other key elements of an appealing kitchen could include a simple, but colorful flower arrangement and the placement of a multi-colored bowl of fresh fruit on a table, island, or counter top. While fragrances such as freshly baked bread, muffins, or coffee can also add to the ambiance of your home, it may sometimes come across to buyers as a little too contrived. There's a thin line between effective home staging and trying too hard to make a favorable impression. Ideally, your efforts at home staging should be subtle, rather than obvious. (When in doubt, ask your real estate agent!)
Creating a checklist of tasks and preparations that need to be done before house showings is an essential aspect of selling your house. Although there are dozens of details your real estate agent will handle, only you can make sure your home is clean, well organized, and ready to be shown.
Enlisting the help of all family members to keep your home tidy and uncluttered will assist you in countless ways, including stress reduction, increased efficiency, and enabling you to sell your home within the shortest possible period of time. When everyone understands that it's a team effort, the process is sure to move ahead smoothly and successfully!
Home staging is one of the most tried-and-true methods of selling your home faster. It can also help you increase the purchase price of your home by between one and five percent.
However, working with a professional home stager--while a good investment--is not always in everyone’s budget.
The good news is, there are a lot of simple and inexpensive ways to stage your home that will give visitors a good first impression, make for great photos for your online listing, and hopefully help speed up your home sale.
In today’s post, we’re going to break down six of the most effective and inexpensive home staging tips to help you sell your home faster.
1. Declutter everything
Cleaning out your home is one of the best ways to make it appear more spacious and welcoming. It gives you the chance to start packing items you won’t need until you move into your new home, and it opens up space to use a few choice decorations around the home.
For things like cabinets and closets, remove all of the items you won’t need until you move. A closet that is half-full will look much larger for guests viewing your home.
2. Clean carpets and polish wooden furniture
Carpets, flooring, and furniture make up a large percent of the visible space in your home. Leaving these items dirty or worn when selling your home is missing out on a huge opportunity to make your home look up-to-date and well-maintained.
You can rent a carpet cleaner for as little as $20, and a gallon of wood polish costs around $15, making these two items a solid investment for staging your home.
3. Paint with bright colors
When we paint our homes we usually choose colors that we like, rather than ones that appeal to the largest number of people. And although that’s a great thing while you own a home, it can be detrimental when it comes time to sell. Repainting dark walls in bright, neutral tones will make the room feel larger and well-lit.
4. Paint the front door while you’re at it
A freshly painted, bright colored front door can be the secret weapon when it comes to making your home stand out amongst your neighbors. It is a cheap way to quickly freshen up the exterior of your home and increase curb appeal.
5. Purchase a new welcome mat and mailbox
Welcome mats tend to get a lot of use and wear down. Similarly, mailboxes often get dented and faded over the years.
These two items can be excellent accents to improve the curb appeal of your home. Choose colors that match the overall color scheme of your home to establish a sense of continuity.
6. Rearrange furniture to allow foot traffic
When someone comes to view your home, you’ll want to sure they have ease of access to each part of the house. Rearrange the furniture in your kitchen, dining room, and bedrooms to make it easy to tour the home.
When we’re trying to find a new home and planning for the changes that will come with moving, it can seem daunting to also have to think about how you’re going to sell your old home.
Everyone has their own unique situation that they’ll have to account for when selling. Some people choose to buy a new home and move in before selling their old home. For others, this isn’t always possible and they have to rent or stay with family while they wait to close on their new house.
Regardless of your circumstances, there are a few things you can do to make the process of selling your home easier. In today’s post, we’ll teach you how to do just that.
1. Make a timeline
Undoubtedly, you’re going to have a lot going on in your life when selling your home. To keep yourself on track, work with your real estate agent to establish a timeline for accomplishing everything you need to do.
This will help you avoid feeling rushed when it comes to completing the tasks on your list. Whether that includes cleaning, packing, preparing documents, or popping the champagne bottle after your sale, it always pays to have a schedule.
To make this process even easier, be sure that you and your spouse/family are working on the same schedule so that everyone is on the same page.
2. Pack and store
When you’re showing your home to potential buyers, you don’t want it to be cluttered with your personal belongings. Furthermore, all of those belongings will soon have to be packed and transported anyway.
To save yourself time and to increase the appeal of your home while it’s on the market, pack up your items by room and store them until you’re ready to move.
You can do this by renting a storage unit or just packing things neatly in your basement until you can move.
3. Make minor repairs now
Before ever putting your home on the market, it’s a good idea to do a thorough walkthrough of the home to check for small issues that you either haven’t noticed or have been putting off.
When a potential buyer visits your home, you can be sure that they’ll be looking for signs that the how was well-maintained. This is your chance to prove that you’ve been staying on top of things around the house.
Making these repairs in advance if selling your home will relieve some of the workload and stress you’ll be feeling once you get closer to selling.
4. Be available
This last step can be the hardest, especially if you and your spouse work full-time and have children with obligations like sports.
Your real estate agent will do most of the work for you when it comes to showing and preparing the home. However, it’s vital that you’re available to respond quickly at key times. This means answering any questions your agent has for you, gathering paperwork when it’s needed, and discussing offers when they’re made.
If you can pull of these four steps, you’ll be in good shape to sell your home quickly, ensuring a smooth sale and transition for you and your family.
You may be ready to sell your home. However, before you add your residence to the real estate market, you should consider involving your neighbors in the home selling process.
There are many quick, easy ways to connect with your neighbors and ensure they can help you sell your house, including:
1. Meet Face-to-Face with Your Neighbors
Although you've enjoyed many wonderful years in your neighborhood, you may determine that now is a good time to relocate. As such, you should meet with your neighbors to share the news.
A face-to-face meeting with a neighbor usually is a good idea. At this time, you can provide details about your future plans and respond to your neighbor's concerns or questions as well.
Plus, you can ask your neighbor if he or she knows anyone who may be interested in your home. And if your neighbor answers, "Yes," encourage him or her to share the news that your house will soon be available.
2. Provide Neighbors with a Copy of Your Home Listing
Ultimately, you'll want to provide your neighbors with as much information about your home as possible. By doing so, you can make it simple for your neighbors to keep colleagues, family members and friends up to date about your residence.
If an online home listing is available, feel free to share a link to the listing via email or social media. Then, your neighbors can copy and paste the link to the listing to share it with anyone they choose.
Also, if your neighbors prefer a paper copy of your home listing, you should be able to provide them with a print-out that outlines your house's features. Be ready to provide paper copies of your home listing to your neighbors at any time, and you can boost your chances of selling your home quickly.
3. Be Available to Respond to Home Selling Concerns and Questions
After you share details about your home with neighbors, it may be only a matter of time before your residence sells. Meanwhile, neighbors may return to you with additional concerns and questions about your residence.
Be available to your neighbors via phone call, text and email. This will ensure you can provide your neighbors with the home information they request, any time they need it.
Lastly, it is important to remember that home sellers should try to do everything they can to promote their residences to the right groups of homebuyers. If you collaborate with a real estate agent, you can improve your chances of connecting with the right homebuyers, regardless of the current housing market's conditions.
A real estate agent will learn about your home selling goals and work with you to ensure you can achieve them. Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent will set up home showings and open houses and respond to your home selling concerns and queries to guarantee you are fully supported throughout the home selling journey.
Take advantage of the aforementioned tips, and you should have no trouble stirring up plenty of interest in your residence.
Selling a home requires a combination of careful planning, favorable market conditions, and good luck. As a result, there’s no simple formula for determining when your house will sell. There are, however, things you can do to help increase the odds of your home selling within your timeline.
In this article, we’ll go over some of the reasons homes sell quickly or slowly, and offer some tips on how to plan accordingly so that your home sells at the price you want and within the time you need, so you can get back to your life in your new home.
What you can’t control
Let’s start with the pre existing conditions that you won’t have much sway over when it comes to selling your home. First, there’s the market: is it a buyer’s or a seller’s market? The term “seller’s market” deals with supply and demand. In a seller’s market, there is more demand than supply, and therefore listings often see quicker sales and more frequent offers. These terms are used geographically as well. While we are currently considered to be in seller’s market nationwide, it could vary geographically. Certain cities and regions experience surplus housing and are therefore considered buyer’s markets.
What you might be able to control
One factor in the amount of time it takes for your home to sell that you have some control over is when you put it on the market. A new study has found that the best time to sell a home is early March to late April, depending on your geographic location.
For you, this means ensuring that your home is ready to be listed by the end of January. That means you won’t want to delay in getting outdoor issues taken care of before winter arrives if you live in a colder climate. It’s much easier to work on roofs and driveways or septic systems before temperatures reach freezing.
What you can absolutely control
Now that we’ve talked about those details which are out of your hands, let’s talk about what you can do now to increase the likelihood of your home selling when you need it to.
First, be sure to price your home accurately. Any time that your house sits on the market with an inflated price is time wasted.
Next, stay on track with home improvements and upgrades that will increase the interior appeal and curb appeal of your home. That means fresh coats of neutral paint, a lot of cleaning and decluttering, and some appropriate landscaping. It’s important to remember, however, that some upgrades aren’t very cost-effective, so be sure to do your research before taking on big home improvement projects.
Right before you put your home on the market, take the time to stage the home and take great photos. Cell phone pictures of a dirty house with poor lighting won’t do you any favors. If you know a photographer, enlist their help for the day to make sure your photos stand out on listing websites.
If you follow these tips and remain consistent in communicating with your real estate agent, there’s no reason you shouldn’t sell your home within the timeframe needed for you and your family.