Choosing your real estate professional is, perhaps, the most important decision you will make when selling property. I believe the more you look around, the more you will see the value of working with me.
However, no matter whom you choose, these simple tips will help you sell your home more quickly and efficiently. Take a moment to view RE/MAX’s “Fit to Sell” and other related videos.
Before Your Home Is Listed
Make first impressions count. Without a doubt, a visually appealing house will attract buyers, who can’t help but respond to the look and “feel” of a home. Take time to carefully prepare for showings. Don’t forget the following:
- Make sure the front (and back) is clean and spruced up – curb appeal will create a favorable first impression.
- Trim bushes and plants as needed, and make sure the lawn is kept mowed and trimmed. In autumn, rake the leaves; in winter, keep the snow shoveled.
- If the front exterior needs a boost, adding low-cost colorful plants and shrubs create instant curb appeal.
- Wash steps, windows, railings, doors, screens, etc.
- Touch up interior and exterior paint as needed.
- Repair/patch broken sidewalks and driveways.
- Consider putting excess furniture and belongings in storage. Now’s the time to clean out the storage shed, garage, attic and basement and sell, give away or throw away items you don’t need anymore.
- Repair leaky faucets, burnt-out light bulbs, wage war on dust and clean until your home shines. Small things can make a potential buyer walk away.
- Shampoo carpets and wax/polish/reseal wood and ceramic tile floors.
- Clean tubs, toilets and showers and hang fresh towels. Mr. Clean Magic Eraser is wonderful to have for these chores.
- Clean the inside and outside of all appliances (yes, people do look inside that refrigerator and stove).
- Oil squeaky doors.
- Wash curtains and replace torn window shades.
- Reorganize/clean out bedroom, bath and storage closets.
- Fix or replace broken hinges, locks, electrical outlets and light switches.
- Listen to suggestions. As you prepare your home, don’t rely solely on your own judgment. It’s hard to be objective when you’re the owner. Your REALTOR® will have helpful, professional tips on how to make your home more marketable.
- Take a whiff. Nothing will turn a buyer away faster than an odd smell. Try to eliminate smoking, food and pet odors. And don’t leave any clues. If potential buyers see a dog or an ashtray, they’ll be on the lookout for smells and stains.
- Turn on the lights. Open shades and draperies before a viewing. Open all doors inside home. Turn on inside and outside lights.
- Let potential buyers “see” themselves in your home. Too many personal items can make viewers feel like they’re intruding in someone else’s home. Keep things clean and simple. Decorate in neutral colors.
During the Listing Period
- When potential buyers visit your home, either be absent or make yourselves as inconspicuous as possible. Take pets with you, if at all possible, during showings.
- Have fresh flowers in the entryway. It makes for a friendly introduction into your home.
- If offers are made that don’t match your hoped-for price, don’t reject them out of hand. Pay attention to your agent’s advice.
- Consider dropping the price if several months go by with few or no offers.
- Don’t get discouraged. In buyer’s markets, homes take longer to sell than during boom times. Your home will eventually sell; it’s a matter of your RE/MAX agent finding the right buyer for you.
Help Your Agent
You have the best chance of selling your home if you work closely with your RE/MAX agent. Make sure all showings are coordinated through him or her. If you have a brochure box, be sure to keep it filled. If prospective buyers want to discuss your property or negotiate price or other terms, defer to your RE/MAX agent. He or she is the expert and can best handle all these details without emotion.