10 Things to do before listing your home!
When getting ready to list your home it is imperative that you make it look it’s best without costing a fortune! Everyone wants top dollar for their property so here are 10 things that could help you achieve your goal of a list ready home without the cost of renovating it!
1. Improve your curb appeal
You never get an second chance to make a first impression! Get out in the yard and spruce it up. You do not have to pay a professional just get out there and trim dead branches and plants, cut the grass and pull weeds from where they do not belong. You can also plant some flowers and lay down some mulch if you want to go the extra mile. This is the first thing buyers see so it’s worth fixing up.
2. Squeaky clean
No one wants to buy a dirty house! Clean, clean, clean! There is no way around this one. Whether you clean it yourself or hire someone to do it – this is so important. This is the time for deep cleaning. The carpets, windows, floors, garage, basement, bathrooms, kitchen, yard and any other space or surface in your home, it all needs to be cleaned as thoroughly as possible.
3. Less is more
Get rid of that clutter! Keeping the home filled only with the essentials will make it seem bigger and provide visual room for buyers to fill with their own things. Keep the personal pictures to a minimum so the potential buyers can imagine themselves in your home without looking at you around every corner.
4. Pick up a brush…..or pay someone to!
Paint touch up is important!! Walls and trim that are marked, dirty, scuffed up an/or damaged need their overdue TLC. This is reflective of the overall condition of the home and reflects how you took care of the house. A buyer does not want to walk into a house and know that they will need to roll up their sleeves and paint upon moving in. A fresh coat of paint will only help you get a better price! If your deck stain looks a bit shabby, take that brush outdoors and keep on going. And if your schedule or time constraint does not allow you to do this on your own a professional is always willing to do it for you.
5. Gather estimates
If you have an older furnace or a roof that are reaching their expiration get estimates on replacements. A buyer will use these as negotiating tools to lessen the price, be educated on their actual costs prior to negotiations. Looking into a Home Warranty for a buyer may also be effective to ease any fear regarding home systems (i.e., central heating ventilation air conditioning – HVAC systems, hot water heaters, plumbing and more). One of the most common home inspection items that can become a bone of contention is your roof. This is an area you will want to pay closer attention to. If your roof is getting up there in age it may make sense to have your roof evaluated by a qualified roofer to see how much life you have left. Getting an estimate will be important so you know what you are dealing with financially.
6. Pet patrol
Eliminate evidence of pets when possible. Buyers will notice the smell, fur, stains and wreckage left behind by your animals. Do whatever it takes to eliminate these signs, including shampooing or replacing carpet, repairing sod and fences and keeping the animals at a friend’s house during showings.
7. Solicit a brutally honest friend
Living in the same house for years sometimes allows us to overlook things that have faded into the background. Things like cobwebs in a corner, a hole in your child’s closet door, the dust on the ceiling fan blades or the hanging smoke detector from a battery change. Have a friend look through the house and act like a potential buyer without a filter and see what they say. Just remember to check your ego at the door, they are only trying to help you!
8. Make a list
Write down everything you have done to update, improve and better your home on the inside and out. This is more firing power for when your agent markets your property. Not all improvements jump out at the buyer, it is always nice to let them know how much you loved your property. Having manuals for appliances and breakdown of room color available for a buyer eliminates any guess work to enable a smooth future transition. All buyers would appreciate it!
9. Pictures are worth a thousand words
When marketing the property the pictures taken have to be the best they can be. With more and more people turning to the internet to shop for a home these days, it’s important to make sure you know the importance of having good photos when listing your home. When people are looking at houses online, they need to be able to see all of the rooms in the house as well as pictures of the backyard, basement and garage. If you have a great view from your house, take a picture of it. Let people see what they would see if they lived in your house. Since they are not looking at the house in person, your pictures need to make a good first impression.
10. Get an appraisal done by a professional
Whether you want to try to sell your home by selling it yourself as a “For Sale By Owner” to eliminate broker fees or through an agency, just remember, KNOWLEDGE IS POWER! Appraisals also help sellers steer clear from accepting a low-ball offer on their home, especially during cooler markets. The appraisal sends the message to buyers and their agents that you’ve done your homework and can give you more leverage in negotiating a final price with a potential buyer.