When a family decides to sell their home, nothing is more frustrating than having it sit on the market month after month with no offers. Some easy tips can give you the advantage over other homes in your area, and make your home sell quickly.
1.) Get rid of the clutter. Buyers that walk into a cluttered house will automatically assume you don’t have enough storage space. Get boxes, pack up all the clutter and store it at a friend’s house or at rental storage. A cluttered house will not show well, because all buyers will see is the clutter, not the floor plan or your great tile job. Don’t just throw it into the garage either, because they will look there, too.
2.) Clean, clean, clean. Hire a house cleaner service if you have to, but get that home sparkling, especially your bathroom and kitchen. Clean grout, scrub floors, shine faucets, clean the oven, etc. etc. And dust! Get under that furniture and get rid of dust bunnies. People will look under, around, and inside of all parts of your house.
3.) Get rid of that funky smell. You may not notice the smell because you are used to it, but if you have pets, a smoker in the family, or a dirty house with mold, your home does smell. Get rid of all offending odors or your prospective buyers won’t even look past the front door. Put some cinnamon sticks to simmer or bake cookies to put that cookie smell in the air before a showing. When a buyer comes in and instantly connects your house as a home, motivation to buy will be much stronger.
4.) Fix it. We all have little jobs around our house that we put off doing until we have no choice. However, buyers will automatically see the dollar signs for the work they have to do that you failed to complete. Your offer amount will go down. Look things over, paint, fix the leaky faucet, but get those repairs all done.
5.) Think beige. You may love your purple bedroom and navy living room walls, but chances are buyers won’t love it. Buy paint and think shades of beige or white. Make it neutral so buyers can imagine their furniture in your home.
6.) Look at your house from the street. Are your flowerbeds overgrown? Shrubs need trimming? Peeling paint? Cracks in the sidewalk? Plant flowers, pull weeds, put out fresh mulch, prune trees, make the outside look inviting, so buyers will give your curb appeal a passing grade. Make sure the front door has a fresh coat of paint.
7.) Highlight the special things about your house. Do you have great built-in bookcases? Then paint them white. A great stone fireplace? Arrange your furniture to focus there. Fabulous tile in the kitchen? Clean off those counters and make it shine. A great view? Open those windows. Let buyers see what is special about your home.
8.) Make your backyard into a haven. If you have an outdoor space, such as a deck or patio, make it a great living space. Put plants, a great furniture arrangement that calls the buyer to have their morning coffee or backyard barbeque there. Outdoor spaces that are tastefully decorated will be considered like an extra room to a prospective buyer.
9.) Light that fireplace. According to realtors, a fireplace is the most requested item in a home. If you are lucky enough to have one, make sure you have it burning when a seller comes by. Call attention to the fireplace by the use of carefully chosen artwork. Don’t use a small picture over a large fireplace. Think about scale.
10.) Think about furniture arranging. If you have a room that has that bowling alley feel where all the furniture is straight lines with a walkway in between, consider a new arrangement. Remove furniture if a room feels too crowded. Add lighting where it is needed. Don’t push the furniture against the walls. Consider the sofa on an angle as that can really open up a floor space. Place your bed on the first wall buyers will see when they stand in the doorway, so they see it first.
11.) Don’t make it personal. Remove personal items like family portraits, trophies, or souvenirs from trips that don’t fit your dÃ?Â©cor. A buyer wants to imagine living in your home, and with personal items everywhere, this can be difficult.
12.) Make it fit. Large rooms can handle large furniture. Smaller rooms need smaller furniture. High ceilings cry out for taller furniture.
13.) Think character. Add architectural details when possible, such as crown molding.Put up a new mantle if yours is outdated. Make sure your stairway is sparkling. Do whatever you can to make your house look grander than the competition.
14.) Make the rooms fit the purpose. Does your dining room feel like a place you would feel like sitting down to a meal? Set the table. Put out nice linens and place settings. Put candles on the table or fresh flowers. Is your bedroom warm and relaxing, like a place you’d love to curl up and take a nap? Put a throw across the end of the bed. Buy bedding that looks luxurious. Take out the exercise equipment and computer from the bedroom. Pare down the number of knick-knacks. The goal with a bedroom is relaxation. Make your bathroom feel like a spa with candles and fluffy white towels.
15.) Go to other open houses in your neighborhood and see what your competition is doing to make their house inviting. If they have a great kitchen, go home and play yours up by adding a tile backsplash or new flooring. Most buyers look at more than one house in a neighborhood and you want your house to stand out above the rest.
16.) Clean out the closets and cupboards. A closet that is stuffed looks small and cramped. Make your storage areas look neat and roomy.
17.) Don’t overprice your home. If it is too high, it won’t sell. In addition, homes that have been on the market too long scare buyers away.
18.) Open the curtains. A dark room will not be inviting. If your home is being shown at night, turn on your lamps in the living room, leave on the lights in the bathroom and kitchen. Think LIGHT.
19.) Think clean floors! Clean the carpets. Replace stained carpet. Fresh carpet will automatically give you a higher selling price. Put down new vinyl or tile in the kitchen if yours is outdated.
20.) Walls, walls, walls….Take down wallpaper if it has been there more than ten years. If it is that old, it’s probably going to make your home feel dated. Paint the rooms that need it. Shine the tiles on the bathroom walls. Don’t let buyers be put off by dirty walls with smudged fingerprints.
21.) Choose a good realtor and insist on an open house. Choose a realtor that sells full-time, not someone who does it part-time. A realtor that has a proven record will sell your home much more quickly. An open house will get buyers into your home that might not have looked at it otherwise. The people who tour your home may be just looking to spend time on a Sunday afternoon, but you never know who they might mention your home to later.