Lifestyle changes are often the reason behind a decision to sell; whether you are relocating, upsizing for your growing family or downsizing, working out when to time your sale can be daunting – especially for first-time sellers. The decision to sell your property may not coincide with the perfect market conditions, therefore it is important to know what is happening in the property market and the economy as a whole.
Many buyers today want move-in-ready homes and will quickly eliminate an otherwise great home by focusing on a few visible flaws. Unless your home shines, you may endure showing after showing and open house after open house — and end up with a lower sales price. Before the first prospect walks through your door, consider some smart options for casting your home in its best light. There are a few ways to make sure your home is ready to make a sale, no matter what type of market you are selling in – below are 5 helpul tips on how you can prepare your home for a sale.
1. HAVE A HOME INSPECTION
Be proactive by arranging for a pre-sale home inspection. For $250 to $400, a home inspector will warn you about troubles that could make potential buyers hesitate. Try to make these repairs before putting your home on the market. It’s more beneficial to know exactly what you’re selling and to be open to seller’s so that they are reassured the value of your product. In some cases, you may have to disclose what the inspection turns up with.
2. GET REPAIR ESTIMATES
If your home inspection uncovers any necessary repairs that you aren’t able to fund at this time, get estimates for the work. These amounts will help buyers to determine if they can afford the home and the repairs. It is also a great idea to hunt down the warranties, guarantees, and user manuals for your larger items including the furnace, washer and dryer, dishwasher, and any other items you expect to remain with the house, you may notice that you are in fact still covered and will be able to make the repairs yourself and if not, the buyer will surely appreciate this extra touch of class and will see value in your transparency.
3. MAKE MINOR REPAIRS
Depending on the chore, not every repair costs a lot or takes a whole lot of time to fix. A little love goes a long way. Fix as many small problems as you can, things you have been meaning to do for months now, just bite the bullet and spend an afternoon to spread a little TLC around the house. Fixing things such as sticky doors, torn screens, cracked caulking, dripping faucets may seem insignificant, but if they are ignored, they’ll give buyers the impression your house isn’t well maintained and we don’t want to give that impression when you’re trying to make a sale. Trust me, everyone will benefit from a short trip to your local hardware store.
4. CLEAR THE CLUTTER
Put clutter away neatly in cupboards, clear all tables and counter tops of just about everything. Clean your closets by packing up little-used items like out-of-season clothes and old toys. To take this a step further – think about Installing closet organizers in order to maximize your storage space. A good rule of thumb is also to put at least one-third of your furniture in storage, especially large pieces, such as entertainment centres and units. Pack up your family photos, knickknacks, and wall hangings to somewhat depersonalize your home in order to make it easier for the prospective buyers to picture themselves in the home. Once complete, make sure you store the items you’ve packed offsite or in boxes neatly arranged in your garage or basement – simply avoid adding clutter when you’re trying to get rid of all the clutter (even if it is neat and tidy).
5. DO A THOROUGH CLEANING
A clean house makes a very strong first impression; one that tells buyers that your home has been well cared for. If your budget allows, consider hiring a cleaning service to really dive deep into all the spots you’re not used to tackling on a regular basis yourself. It may be a wise decision to invite an extra set of eyes to find the spots that are hidden or not top-of-mind. If you choose to forego the service, make sure you wash the windows and leave them open to air out your rooms. Clean all carpeting and drapes to eliminate trapped cooking odors, pet smells, and whatever else has introduced itself over the years. Be sure to wash light fixtures and baseboards, mop and wax floors, and give your stove and refrigerator a thorough once-over. Pay extra attention to the finer details – wash fingerprints from light switch plates, clean inside the cabinets, and polish doorknobs. Like I said, first impressions are the most important and you don’t want to turn off a potential buyer because you missed a few spots on the window.
First impressions are lasting so, the presentation of your property is critical in creating strong initial interest from potential buyers. Contact me today – I will be able to suggest to you any changes that can be made to your home to add value or increase the attractiveness of your property as a whole.