These days it is quite common for the average American to move several times in their lifetime. In fact, according to the Census Bureau’s website, Americans are likely to change residence an average of 11.7 times. This means a lot of time and money is spent on prepping and selling homes so, in order to save time and money, it is important to take the time to learn about the home selling process. Now, there is a lot that goes into selling homes, not to mention a lot of study and research into the psychology of it all, and it cannot be learned from one article (or even two). To help speed along the process, hire on a licensed and experienced real estate agent. They will be able to help you through the process.
This article is designed to be a brief guild for sellers of homes—not a comprehensive lesson. It is simply a list of tips to help speed up the sale process and help a seller get the most out of their home.
Pricing is Key
When you list your home, it is imperative that you list it for the right price. However, to do that, you first need to know how much it is worth. So, if possible, do an appraisal on your home one you have everything fixed up to see what a fair price would be. Then take that price to your agent and they can help you put together a strategic price according to your needs and goals. Be sure, however, that whatever your strategy, it will be mutually beneficial to both seller and buyer.
One of the most important things that you can do to make your home more inviting to potential buyers is to make it feel as open as possible. This can be accomplished through the art of decluttering. Now, this can be a stressful, and sometimes daunting, process, but the results are worth it. Most experts advise that you take at least half your possessions out of your home and store them elsewhere while the home is being shown. This will make it so your potential buyers do not feel cramped or crowded. The first step to decluttering—the one that has the most astounding results—is to first go around your home with a garbage bag and throw away any garbage that could be lying about. Garbage can include, but is not limited to, old magazines, empty grocery bags, unneeded extras of anything, and junk mail.
Once your home is free of garbage, it is important that you at least try and take out some of your furniture. If you have an extra couch or an awkward bookshelf, these should be the first to go. Then, any other piece of furniture that could cause a room to feel cluttered—but don’t take out too much so it feels empty. After the garbage and furniture has been taken care of, your home may be all ready to go. If not, simply try and prepack as much as you can so that your home feels open.
Enhance Your Lighting
After your home is feeling open, it is important to make it well lit as well. Lighting plays a vital role in the way a home is perceived. So, to enhance your lighting in your home there are several options and a combination of all three will yield the best results. The first thing to do is to clean the existing lights, windows, and mirrors in your home. This can brighten up a room very quickly, and once it’s done further action may not need to be taken.
If, however, your home is still dark after cleaning off all the lights, mirrors, and windows then you may consider replacing your lightbulbs with brighter ones. The most common bright lightbulb would have to be CFLs. CFLs are a little more expensive at first, but they are brighter, last longer, and are more energy efficient. Lastly, if need be, try adding some more mirrors or lamps. As long as it doesn’t make the home look bad, then go for it.
Take You Out of Your Home
This may sound odd, but it is important for the psychological aspect of the sale. You need to take everything out of your home that is specific to you or any sort of niche group. This process is called depersonalization and it is important because if there are personal effects lying around, pictures of something that only means something to you, etc. around the home, then prospective buyers will have a hard time feeling like anything other than your guest.
When it comes to depersonalization, you need to take down any personal pictures, statues, busts, collections, heirlooms, etc. Replace them with generic pieces of art—like modest pictures of nature or Boise. These will help your guests feel more comfortable because nature and the city are neutral images, images that they have seen before.
You can also put out a few simple plants—as long as they are fake. You wouldn’t want to cause a prospective buyer to have an allergic reaction while visiting your property.
Create Good Curb Appeal
The old mantra ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’ does not seem to apply to real estate. There are plenty of good parcels of property that go untouched because of their outward appearance. So, do whatever is necessary to make your home look as beautiful as possible before any pictures are taken or a sign is put in your yard.
Some of the problem areas to watch out for when it comes to curb appeal would have to be landscaping, the houses paint job, windows, and the home’s hardware (doorbells, doorknobs, etc). If you can make sure that all of those things are looking great, then you will have a better chance of getting people in the door.
Don’t just wing it when you are trying to sell your home, be prepared, and do your research so you can get the most from selling your home. For more help, contact one of our licensed agents, they will be glad to help you.