Aug 29, 2017
Lets just say you want to sell your home. You are researching and exploring all your options and looking to hire a licensed real estate professional to help market and sell your home. But even before you reach out to a realtor, there are several things that you need to do to prepare your home to list onto the real estate market. Buyers are looking for a home for THEMSELVES. When buyers walk into a home, they know whether they are probably going to buy that said home within the first couple of minutes that they are in it. FIRST IMPRESSIONS COUNT. It is highly encouraged to depersonalize your home to help the buyer VISULIZE themselves in your home. I have often told people as a Stager, “Pretend that it is not your home.” While you may be an avid hunter and think that you may be the best decorator in the world, not everyone will appreciate being greeted by your trophy 8-point buck deer from 1999 right as they enter your home.
Step One: Declutter your Home.
Anything that is personal and special to you, go ahead and put it into storage. All family photos, extra clothes that you are not going to wear till next season, your collection of teapots, your grandmother’s gilded gold mirror, etc. Box it up and put it into storage. Buyers need to be able to visualize how they would decorate their home, with THEIR OWN personal items. Protect your items and ensure that those special items and photos are in a safe place. Also, that way buyers won’t see something that they would want to include in the sale of your home. If you wouldn’t consider parting with it, don’t have it out. Store it.
If there are items that you don’t want to keep but are still nice, consign or sell it. Every extra cent helps when you are moving. There are so many expenses – truck, movers, storage unit, gas, moving insurances, etc. Why not make some extra cash and use what you already have to help pay for the move? Facebook has become a HUGE market place for “For Sale By Owner Items” and most consignment stores will happily help you sell your items and split the cost with you.
If you cannot sell it, donate it. There are so many charities that rely on donated goods to generate an income and raise money for the people that they aim to help. And why not help another in need. Excellent charities to reach out to: Habitat for Humanity, Goodwill Industries, The Kidney Foundation, or other local thrift stores. Several have a truck and will come and pick up the items for donation form your home.
If you have items that do not fit into any of these categories: Dispose of it correctly. For example: Old mail with any personal information needs to be shredded. Fluorescent lights need to be recycled at a place that accepts them (Home Depot, Lowes). Lastly, please recycle any recyclable items.
Step Two: Prelisting Inspection.
Ask your real estate professional for a list of recommended home inspectors, contractors and handymen that are in your area. Why not spend a couple hundred dollars to get a home inspection, identify and fix the problems that your home has before you list it? Buyers want a move in ready home and do not want to move into something that they are going to have to repair anything in. I bet if Tom Hanks in the movie, “Money Pit”, would have done a home inspection prior to purchasing his home, he probably would not have bought it.. Also buyers will use items that need to be fixed to lower the purchase price. You are more likely to get top dollar for your home when everything works correctly. Spend a couple hundred now, save thousands later.
Step Three: Update what you can/ Dress it up.
Touch up the paint, replace the failing appliances, address the cosmetic issues in your home! Spend the appropriate money to get your home to look its best. Don’t cut corners, don’t do it yourself unless you are a professional at it, JUST FIX IT! Buyers will look for any excuse to get a couple of thousands of dollars off the purchase price. Buyers love to see “New Paint”, “New Appliances”, “Just Updated” anything along those lines. Don’t give them any excuse to lower the price on your home. Spend the money right off the bat to get a larger return later. Listen to the recommendations of your real estate or staging professional.
Step 4: Deep Clean
Finally! You have decluttered and removed all extra items, fixed it up, and dressed it up. It is now time to clean it up. Ask your real estate professional for a list of recommended house cleaners that will do a very thorough and deep cleaning in every nook and cranny of your home. Be sure to dust the fans, vacuum, mop, pledge and windex every surface until your home is super clean and shines.
Step 5: Hiring the Right Agent.
If you have not already found a real estate professional to help you with the sale of your home, I highly recommend doing so. A good agent will help represent you, advise you, and help you get the top dollar for your home. Be sure to find an agent that will help market your home in the best possible way: Correct lighting, lots of photos done by a professional photographer, have a Staging Professionals available to them, and offer 3D Matterport Tour to create a Online 3D Tour of your home. Again, first impressions count and what your agent uploads to MLS the FIRST TIME it’s published is what potential buyers and agents will see. You want to bring them into your home with the online listing. A listing with fantastic light and bright photos of a well staged, clean home with 3D tour will bring in more potential buyers in comparison to a listing that only has 1 or 2 dark photos of the inside and a iPhone shot of the front of the home. Lastly, make sure that your real estate professional contacts you with the feedback of the real estate showings of potential buyers to see what you can do to help sell your home.
If you want to make a little piece of The Island your own, you need more than just a road map and a REALTOR. You need a partner who can make things happen.
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