What's my home worth?
If you are thinking
of selling your home, chances are you’re caught up in a mass of emotions. I
have worked with many sellers and the number one thing I hear back from them is
they were thankful that I reduced their stress through the process. You may be
looking forward to moving up to a new home or facing the uncertainty of a major
move across country. You may be reluctant to leave your memories behind or
eager to start new and exciting adventures. I understand and I am here to help.
1. Take a Fresh Look
at Your Home
Your home looks great to you, but keep in mind a buyer wants to see it as if their family will be living in it. Take a fresh look at your dwelling. Hop in your car, drive around the block, and then scrutinize your home as a prospective buyer who will see it for the first time. Consider what’s called “curb appeal”, does it need new plants or some painting? Does the driveway need repair work? Is the landscaping in good shape? Remember, be very critical; I assure you, your buyer will be.
Next, pull into the driveway and take a good, hard look. Is the yard neat and trimmed? What about the view from the front yard? Then, walk inside and size up the interior as though seeing it for the first time; take a tour and imagine what your real estate agent might say about each room, look into cabinets, open doors, check out the bathroom.
2. Clean Out the Clutter Before You Start to Sell
Before putting your home on the market, get rid of clutter in every area — closets, attic storage, kitchen cabinets, drawers, bath vanities, shelves — everywhere. If you don’t use it, lose it. Potential buyers are seriously put off by clutter, and most of us drag a lot more things through life than we really need. Clutter will subconsciously tell your buyer, the home doesn't have enough storage.
Also, don’t forget the furniture and fixtures when getting rid of clutter — people tend to put too much in too little space, which makes a buying prospect think your home is too small.
Have a great moving sale with all the stuff you’ve collected. If you can’t bear to part with some possessions, store them in the attic or some other place that’s out of sight to a potential buyer.
3. To Sell, Sell, Sell — Clean, Clean, Clean
After you’ve cleared out the clutter, it’s time to really clean. I would always suggest you have the carpets professionally cleaned, deep clean the bathrooms, dust the furniture, clean the windows and window coverings, and wipe off the ceiling fans. In short, clean everything. A dirty home will send the message to a buyer that you don't really care about the house and maintenance hasn't been a priority.
Don’t forget the exterior; paint or pressure wash everything that needs it. It will be worth your time and effort, I promise.
4. Get More for Your Home: Repairs Pay Off
The next project
is making all the repairs necessary to attract a buyer.
Touch up all the paint, repair the screens, spruce up the porch and make your entry area really shine. Don’t forget to water the lawn and landscape beds, and take the time to trim, mow, edge and get rid of sick or dying plants. Inside, fix the grout in the bathrooms and on tile floors, adjust any doors that need it, and be sure to fix any plumbing problems.It's a good idea to get all this done before I list your home.
5. Putting Your Home on the Market: Show It to Sell It
After you’ve, cleaned, shined, mowed, and generally whipped your property into shape, it’s time to find your buyer.
There a few things that always attract buyers. Even if it’s bright daylight, open the blinds and turn on the lights. Open all the interior doors to make the home appear more welcoming and roomy. Be sure to remove your kids and pets during showings — they’re cute, but a prospect wants to see your home, not your family. Make sure you pet’s litter pan is clean so the home smells clean and fresh, not like air freshener. Make showings easy, let's make sure your home is available to be seen by a prospective buyer with as little notice as possible.
6. Get a Sense of the Market
Before you put your home on the market, take a weekend day to check out the competition: homes with similar prices and in similar neighborhoods.
Remember, after location, the most important item to a buyer is a well-maintained home. Many things can be overlooked if the buyer knows they can move in without a lot of work and expense.
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