Typically, sellers love their home and are blind to its faults. They are enthusiastic about the upgrades, the beauty and the layout, while at the same time are completely unaware of the things that may turn a buyer off. Realtors, on the other hand, have the ability to see a home through the eyes of a buyer.
Here are 7 Realtor tips to get your home sold more quickly and for more dollars.
- De-Clutter Room-by-Room
To most sellers, the concept of de-cluttering is not unfamiliar. The goal is to create a sense of more space and flow throughout the home. For this reason, it’s important to remember that less is more. Sellers should store, sell or donate anything that is not currently in use. Items with sentimental value need to be stored. This includes personal photos or anything that identifies the current owners. The reason for removing personal items is twofold. The first is to enable the buyer to envision living in the home and the second is for the seller’s personal security.
Sellers are also encouraged to organize the closets and pantries. It is important to de-clutter here as well. Closets with few items in them look neat and organized – and spacious. Sellers need to be aware that buyers see everything! Keep packing boxes in one specific area of the home—and never in the main area—so buyers can focus on the overall design and floor plan.
Lastly, all items of value should be removed from the home. For their safe keeping, they can be put in a vault or bank security box.
- Fix Items Prior to Listing the Property
If it is broke, it needs fixing! Don’t reduce your sale price by a lack of home maintenance. To get the best price, the home needs to be the shiny penny amidst it’s competition. Cracked window seals or mirrors, chipped paint, marked walls, non-working fixtures, carpet stains, noisy toilets, slow drips, missing or faulty electrical outlets – these all need to be addressed BEFORE you put the home on the market or you will pay for them once under contract during the inspection phase.
Another tip is to have your major systems inspected and serviced. This allows you to make repairs before selling, thereby reducing surprises during the inspection contingency.
Take a critical look at your home, if you were the purchaser, what would you see? Tired paint? Have the walls painted a neutral color. Everything that you do pre-listing is an investment that will make a positive difference when the home is sold!
- Have the Home Professionally Cleaned and Odor Free
Nothing puts a buyer off more than a home that doesn’t sparkle! A clean and odor free home are a must for getting top dollar. Have the home, windows and carpets professionally cleaned.
Sellers, as the commercial goes, are ‘nose blind to odors they have gotten used to’, so it is just as important that the home smell clean as it is that it is clean. Some homes may require a professional ozone clean to rid stubborn odors like cigarette smoke and pets.
To maintain a clean smelling indoor environment, refrain from plug-ins or sprays, as they can affect people with chemical sensitivities or allergies. Instead, keep small boxes of baking soda in the refrigerator and freezer or run charcoal air purifiers. Another simple technique is to place several spices such as cinnamon sticks, cloves, and allspice in a pot of water and letting it simmer on low before showings. This creates a ‘comfort’ scent throughout the home. Other pleasant scents include fresh flowers and baked cookies.
- Hire a Stager
A home needs to have a ‘certain’ look to be appealing to buyers. Think HGTV. There are two types of stagers. The first uses their own equipment and furniture to create ‘that’ look and the second uses the seller’s own furniture. The will make recommendations as to placement and will often add the small finishing touches required for ‘the’ look. Think of the small fee as an investment to obtain a better price and a quicker sale, The Evans Team offers this service.
- Don’t Forget the Outside
Beautiful gardens and outdoor areas sell homes. Often, a buyer will overlook something on the inside if they love the outside. This ties into the importance of your home’s curb appeal; the impression a buyer gets when they pull up to the house.
For a great first impression think about a new mail box, paint the front door, make sure that the porch is clean and cobweb free, trim bushes and trees, pull weeds, have the lawn cut and edges trimmed. Add some potted flowers near the front door for a pop of color.
6. Professional Photography and Video
We live in a visual world. Beautiful photographs sell the home before the buyer has stepped across the threshold. Bad photos mean less showings, more price s and lower offers.
You will need at least 20 photos of the inside of the home. If your listing goes through a change of season, make sure the photography is updated to reflect it. Nothing makes a listing look staler than photos shot in winter showing snow and bare trees when the buyer is shopping in the spring.
Videos and aerial drone photography of the property are also big pluses. Everyone wants to see their home on YouTube!
As mentioned earlier, to reduce the risk of theft, remove all valuables including expensive artwork and home décor prior to having the home photographed.
7. Price the Home Correctly the First Time!
The #1 killer of any real estate sale is overpricing the property and not marketing it correctly. This can be tricky and needs the advice of a real estate professional. Truthfully, it doesn’t matter what you paid for the home, how much you have spent on the upgrades, what you need to net – the arbiter of pricing is the buyer. Your home is only worth what someone else is prepared to pay for it. Homes are market driven. Of course, as a seller, you always have the right to not sell your home, but if you are on the market, why would you not want to be competitive?
The goal of pricing is to have motivated buyers eager to see your home. As such, the first few weeks on the market are the most critical for showings. If you are priced too high, your property will sit. Lots of showings and an offer means you had the home priced correctly. Sometimes this will also mean that more than one buyer wants the property and multiple offers may be received resulting in a higher than list price.
By following the above 7 Realtor tips for getting your home sold, your listing will be in place to stand above the competition. That will line you up for seeing a SOLD sign before you know it!
REALTY MASTERS, STL