Whatever your reasons are for selling, remember that now is no time for procrastination, the process of preparing a home for sale can take a month or more.
SOLUTIONS REALTY GROUP LLC will be by your side through this process assisting anywhere we can. Here's how to start:
1. Take A Fresh Look At Your Home
Your home looks great to you, but does a buyer think the same thing? -- Take a different look at your home. The way a prospective buyer will see it for the first time. First does your home have "street appeal"? Are there window treatments in every window? Is the siding clean? Does the driveway need repair work? Is the landscaping in good shape? Try to be very critical; your buyer will be.
Next, walk around the outside. Is the grass cut and trimmed? Is there junk laying around on the sides of your home? Then, walk inside as though seeing it for the first time. Walk around and imagine what your real estate agent might say about each room, look into cabinets, open doors, check out the bathroom. Is there anything you can think of that needs attention? If so, then make a mental note of the things that might put off potential buyers, along with another list of the things that will attract them. Remember, this home has become a great place to live for you, but a new buyer may see things a bit differently.
2. Clean Out The Clutter Before You Start To Sell
Before putting your home on the market, you should de-clutter -- closets, kitchen cabinets, drawers, bath vanities, bedrooms and shelves -- everywhere. Remember, this is no time to be emotionally attached to the corner shelf or grandmas chair: if you don't use it daily, remove it and store it. The biggest issue I hear from buyers is "oh my, look at all this stuff! I can't even picture my own furniture in here". Buyers are seriously put off by clutter, and honestly, most of us keep a lot more things than we really need.
Also, don't forget the furniture and fixtures when getting rid of clutter -- most of us put too much in too little space, which makes a buying prospect think your home is too small. ie. a kitchen eating area looks much smaller than it is because there's a table, 8 chairs, a hutch, a microwave stand and a shelf unit with cookbooks. Most likely all crammed into an area made just for a table and chairs.
Have a great moving sale with all the stuff you've decided to remove and use the money for paint or other materials you need for repair projects. If you just 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. If You Want To Sell, You Must Clean!
After you've cleared out all the clutter, it's time to really clean. Have the carpets professionally cleaned, polish the floors, deep clean the bathrooms, go over the laundry room, polish the furniture, clean the cabinets hardware, wash the windows and window coverings, and shine up the ceiling fans, light fixtures and kitchen appliances. Clean everything from top to bottom.
Don't forget the outside. Paint or power-wash everything that needs it. Remember, this is a top to bottom, inside and out clean-up project.
4. Get More For Your Home: Repairs Pay Off
After you've cleaned the place to within an inch of its life, the next project is making all the repairs necessary to attract a buyer. So, fix up the roof, touch up all the paint, repair the screens, clean up the porch framing, and make your entry area really shine. Don't forget to water the lawn and flowers, 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, fix any scratches on the walls, cover any stains, and be sure to fix any plumbing problems. Remember, do what your home needs before the first buyer appears at your door.
There is, however, an alternative to the sweat equity you get from a total fix-up --but it carries a price. An "as-is" sale keeps you from doing all this work, but a buyer will decide the price to repair all those items is twice as much as it really does cost. Then, the buyer will deduct that amount from your asking price before making an offer. Is it worth letting those small repairs go?
5. Putting Your Home On The Market: Show It To Sell It
After you have cleaned, shined, mowed, and generally whipped your property into shape, it's time to attract a buyer. Regardless of who markets your home, you or a broker, there are other, small things you must do to attract buyers. For example, even if it's bright daylight, open the blinds and turn on the lights. Also, open all the interior doors to make the home appear roomier. Be sure to remove all your kids and pets -- sure they're cute, but a buyer wants to see your home, but may be allergic to your pride and joy. In addition, make sure your pet's litter pan is clean so the home smells clean and fresh, not like air freshener. Buyers do not like a heavy scent in the air, good or bad. Remember, you need to make sure your home is available to be seen by a prospective buyer with as little notice as possible. That means less than an hour, or even five minutes, if possible.
6. Get A Market Analysis From A Professional
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, you don't have to go out and buy new furniture just to look like that beautiful new model in the new development -- what you want is the feel of that new model -- clean, uncluttered, and fresh.
Remember, after location, the most important item to a buyer is a well maintained home. Many flaws can be overlooked if the buyer knows he can move in without a lot of trouble and expense.