Increasing The Odds Of Selling Your Home Quickly

The current real estate market dictates that sellers do all they can to make their properties as attractive as possible to potential buyers.  Long gone are the days when homes’ minor imperfections were overlooked by buyers anxious to have an offer accepted before a bidding war ensued.  Today’s buyers have regained the discerning character that defined their existence prior to the housing boom.  All is not lost for sellers, however.  There are a number of minor, yet effective steps they can take to make their homes more appealing to home shopper in the current environment.

1.  Improve first impressions. Spruce up the areas that buyers see first by touching up the paint on the front door and attending to the landscaping and/or flower boxes.  Ensure that the house has a pleasant aroma by airing it out in advance of showings or, better yet, baking some cookies.

2. De-Personalize.  Put away your wedding photos, religious items, the kids’ school pictures, and your collection of refrigerator art.  Buyers have difficulty seeing past personal artifacts, and you don’t want them to be distracted. You want buyers to imagine their own personal effects decorating the house. 

3. De-Clutter.  Again, you want to let buyers’ imaginations take hold. They will have difficulty doing that if there is too much clutter.  A good rule of thumb is if you haven’t used it in over a year, you probably don’t need it anyway, so donate it or throw it away.

4. Rearrange Bedroom Closets and Kitchen Cabinets.   Buyers are notorious snoopers and they enjoy opening closet and cabinet doors. They can be put off if items fall from the shelves when they open a door to peer inside.  When a buyer sees everything organized, she is more likely to believe you take good care of the rest of the house as well.

5.  Make minor repairs. Make the effort to repair small problems that may have a negative impact upon presentation such as leaking faucets and burned out light bulbs.

6. Address big problems.  If there are obvious problems that will need attention before settlement, it is better to fix them before the house hits the market.  For example, if the roof is leaking and you’re painting over water stains on the ceiling every time it rains, get the roof fixed.  The same goes for broken steps and sidewalks, leaking hot water heaters, and crumbling chimneys.

7. Turn on the Light.  Dark areas are uninviting, so keep the lights on. Some quick fixes might include opening the blinds, adding lamps, or increasing the wattage of light bulbs.

8. Make the House Sparkle. While the house is listed for sale, keep it in a state of cleanliness so that in the event of an unexpected showing it can be easily tidied.

9. Put those Pets in their Place.   If you have pets, don’t discount the segment of the buying population that is not so attracted to them by having your pets parading around during a showing or an open house.

10. Add Warmth.  Have some fun with a few accessories here and there to make the home feel more cozy and inviting.  If necessary, draw on the experience and ideas of a professional designer to give the house that bit of extra appeal.   They could very well help sell your home quickly and for a higher price!