Even though the economy has improved over the past decade, buyers are still favored over sellers in today’s current housing market. For this reason, homeowners often find themselves facing stiff competition when selling a property, and therefore must implement specific strategies to attract an appropriate buyer. Those in this situation are typically pleased to discover that proven techniques exist to ensure the quick sale of a house without having to substantially drop the price. If you are planning to sell your property, use the tips outlined below to ensure the most successful outcome possible:
Make Appropriate Repairs
If your bathrooms and kitchen are outdated and unappealing, consider simple remodeling projects. Similarly, if you need roof repairs, it is best to have such work completed before listing your house. Other than these projects, however, it is not wise to overspend on renovations. Rather, you should be economical when planning repairs.
You are unlikely to see a return on a $50,000 kitchen renovation or $25,000 worth of landscaping. Fortunately, there are many less expensive projects you can plan to boost your home’s curb appeal and make a great first impression on prospective buyers.
When searching for ideas on how to get top dollar for your house, you may discover that most experts recommend simple renovations, such as investing in a new front door or installing replacement windows in rooms that face the street. Adding fresh coats of paint to the interior and exterior are also projects that enhance the look of your home and ensure it appears well-maintained to potential buyers.
Be sure to use neutral colors when painting the home’s interior, as this makes it easier for buyers to visualize their own furniture, as well as their preferred décor in each room.
Remove and replace any carpets that are stained or worn, as drab, dirty rugs and carpets significantly detract from the beauty of your home, even if the rest of the house is in perfect condition.
Updating appliances is particularly important if your goal is to receive the highest possible price for your house. Many modern consumers prefer stainless steel appliances, but any new addition instantly adds value and appeal in the eyes of most buyers.
Carefully consider your budget and acquire the best possible appliances within your price range. You should also remove small appliances that are damaged or look worn, such as microwaves, food processors and coffee machines. It is better to take such items away entirely than to allow outdated, worn out appliances to detract from a kitchen that would otherwise show very well.
Because there is never a second chance for a first impression, your home’s curb appeal is critically important if you want top dollar for your house. Again, your objective is not to overspend, rather to plan inexpensive projects that greatly improve the appearance of your property. Your goal should be to make your house stand out from other dwellings in the area and appeal more to potential buyers than similar properties that simply do not show as well.
Improving your home’s curb appeal is not difficult. In fact, you should begin with simple tasks, such as power washing the entire exterior, and cleaning all windows and surfaces. Additionally, since most drapes and blinds are visible from the street, update all window treatments to create a visually appealing picture to potential buyers. Repaint trim, repair broken shutters or lattice and make sure all flowerbeds, hedges, and trees are professionally trimmed.
If you frequently complete DIY projects around your home or do your own car repairs, make sure your driveway and garage are free of clutter, oil stains, and tools or lawn equipment. Properly organize such items and close the hood on any vehicles you may be working on: buyers who are immediately greeted by dirty, cluttered driveways and garages may form a negative impression of the house before they have a chance to see the more appealing areas of the property.
Fix Small Problems
Small problems in a house are not always overlooked by buyers, even though many homeowners think this is the case. Rather, these are often the very things that create a negative impression. Therefore, it is wise to walk through each room of your house, taking note of everything that needs fixing. Fortunately, repairing little things is not usually a costly endeavor, so you should not procrastinate with regard to such tasks.
Having your home professionally deep cleaned is an excellent project that is not exceedingly expensive, but will go a long way toward ensuring your house shows well. Many people clean their own dwellings, but professional cleaning services do a much better job than even the most meticulous homeowner.
Eradicate Signs of Pets
You should also make every effort to remove signs of pets in the house. Tuck litter boxes and food and water bowls out of sight. If possible, keep pets themselves sequestered. Not all people are animal lovers, and if a person has an aversion to dogs but is accompanied by one as he or she walks through the home, it may have a very negative impact. Similarly, if a potential buyer is allergic to cats, he or she will not be pleased to spend the entire visit sneezing.
Pet odors are the kiss of death to sellers. Therefore, you should do everything possible to ensure no unpleasant smells are lingering in any area of your house.
Make sure your house is organized. Remove as much clutter as possible, even if you must temporarily rent a small storage unit. Countertops, desks, and tables should be mostly clear to showcase maximum surface space. Remove family photos from mantels, shelves, and walls. This helps potential buyers picture themselves living in the house, instead of feeling like guests in another person’s dwelling.
Try to give your house more living space by storing unnecessary furniture. The more furniture you have in your home, the smaller the rooms will look. This can work against you when your goal is to sell the property. This tip can even be used in closets, as they also appear more spacious when they are not packed with clothes, shoes and other items.
Home staging is a specific strategy that involves more than simply cleaning and organizing your house. Begin by making the rooms smell airy and fresh, either by opening windows or by lighting a few candles or burning oil.
You may even want to put some cookies in the oven or allow a pot of savory stew to boil on the stove to create a pleasant aroma. However, whichever aroma you choose, be careful not to overdo it, as nothing drives prospective buyers out of your home faster than overwhelming fragrances.
You should also make sure potential buyers are comfortable by setting the temperature of your home to an appropriate level. Adjust window treatments and turn on lamps to ensure rooms are properly lit. Arrange your furniture in an appealing manner, and use accent pieces to draw the eye to predetermined areas.
Place a small fruit basket or a vase of fresh flowers on the dining table, and make sure your most interesting knickknacks, books and conversation pieces are showcased appropriately. The goal of all these tasks is simply to help potential buyers visualize themselves in a beautiful, pleasant, uncluttered home.
Vacate During Showings
When a realtor is showing your home or an open house is underway, it is important for you to vacate the premises. This is because it is uncomfortable for you to have strangers in your dwelling, and this discomfort is sometimes obvious. Similarly, it is uncomfortable for buyers to be in another person’s home, as they do not feel as free to speak their mind to the realtor as they would if you were not present. The best way to alleviate such tension is to simply allow the agent to do his or her job and give buyers the opportunity to walk through the home at their leisure.
Finally, check with your realtor for additional suggestions and specific advice. Regardless of the price you desire or the time frame you have in mind for selling your house, you have everything to gain and nothing to lose by following the tips outlined above.