During my time as a Buyer’s Agent in the Real Estate Market I found myself often surprised at the state of the homes I showed my clients. They would want to know immediately how long does it take to sell a house; the answer was always, it depends. It would depend on what they were willing to do to prepare the home. Homeowners should always strive to get the best price possible for their homes. Unfortunately, many of them don’t prepare their homes for showing that could potentially mean larger checks in their pockets.
There are many things that homeowners can do to make sure one of their greatest assets is among the best in the real estate market place. Here we will discuss a few of them.
1. De-clutter your home! When potential buyers come for a showing they don’t want to see how messy you are on a daily basis. Clear off the countertops in the kitchen so they buyers can see how much space is available. Pick up anything lying on the floor or out of place. Neatly arrange your garage and any storage spaces buyers can determine if the areas would fit their needs. Also make sure your kids clean their rooms and keep them orderly. This way if you have a last minute showing you are prepared.
2. Impersonalize-Potential buyers like to envision themselves living in a home. That is a difficult tasks if everywhere they look there are pieces of the homeowner. Take down your family photos from the walls and dressers. Paint your walls a neutral color. If you have animals, place their beds and bowls in one area. This helps the buyer to make see the house as their own.
3. Make Noticeable Repairs-If the roof has leaked in the past and left stains on the ceiling you need to paint over it. Don’t leave a carpet allowance if the carpet is ruined; replace the carpet. If the grass needs to be cut go ahead and cut it. Buyers are always on the lookout for things that can help them to negotiate a lower price. Any repairs they need to be done is money saved by the buyer and loss to the seller.
4. Leave during Showings-Many well intentioned sellers have said things during a showing and lost out on selling their home or lost money by revealing information. I remember showing a home where my buyer overheard the children saying “I hope they buy the house so we can go on to Florida to take care of grandma.” This innocent exchange gave my buyer the upper hand and a great deal on the house. For the seller, they lost out on a better deal by allowing themselves and their children to be there.
5. Price your home correctly-You have the greatest chance of selling your home in the first couple of weeks that it goes on the market. If your home is overpriced the buyers will know it. Some buyers will never see it as it is out of their price range. If the price is competitive or lower than the rest of the homes on the market; you could find your home in a bidding war. Now wouldn’t that be nice.
When you are ready to sell your home, instead of asking how long does it take to sell a home; ask what needs to be done to sell quickly. Make your home a place that every buyer wished they owned by taking the necessary steps now. Your next move could be sooner than you think if you do.