Price your home aggressively
Setting the right price for your home is the single most important decision you will make when you decide to sell. Go too high and you run the risk of turning off buyers in the marketplace, go to low and you leave money on the table. One simple but powerful technique for pricing your home aggressively is to spend the day looking at your competitor’s homes. By doing so you will be seeing the world through the buyers’ eyes. Be tough and honest with yourself. Compared to the competition what would be a price that would position your home as the best value proposition for buyers in your neighborhood?
Hire a good real estate agent
Not all agents are created equal. Don’t hire an agent just because they tell you what you want to hear. Make sure your agent gives you a true picture about values in your neighborhood.
Stage your home
Buyers won’t buy unless they have a great first impression of your home. To help build a stronger first impression, start from the outside by being sure your home has its greatest curb appeal.
- Pressure wash stained driveways and walkways.
- Paint the front door, remove weeds, plant flowers.
Next move inside and stage each room.
- A set dining room table
- A book on the nightstand next to bed
- Fresh flowers on the kitchen counter
- Soft music playing
A buyer who has narrowed their search down to 2 or 3 top choices may need a little push to motivate them to decide on your home.
- Offer a 1 year Home Warranty
- Offer to help with closing costs
- If any repairs are needed, take care of them
Many sellers do pre-inspections of the home to provide buyers with a clear whole home inspection or pest inspection. (a word of caution; anything discovered during a pre-inspection will likely need to be disclosed whether you fix the issue or not). It’s often easier and less expensive to do the needed repairs in advance than to negotiate them later with buyers. For $250.00 to $400.00 an inspector will warn you about troubles that could make potential buyers balk. So, make repairs before putting your house on the market. Not every repair will cost a lot. Fix as many small problems as you can.
- Squeaky doors, torn screens, cracked caulking, dripping faucets.
This may seem trivial, but these small problems give buyers the impression your home isn’t well maintained.
Clear the clutter
Clear your kitchen counters of just about everything. Clean out your closets by packing up items you don’t use often. (toys and clothes). Install closet organizers to maximize space. Put at least 1/3 of your furniture in storage, especially large pieces, such as entertainment centers and big televisions. Depersonalize your home by packing away family photos, knickknacks and wall hangings. Store the items you’ve packed off site or in boxes neatly arranged in your garage.
Do a thorough cleaning
A clean house makes a strong first impression that the home has been well cared for. Wash windows. Clean carpet. Eliminate pet and food odors. Clean light fixtures and baseboards. Give your stove and refrigerator a thorough cleaning.
Pay attention to detail
Wipe fingerprints off light switches and door handles. Organize your kitchen cabinets and pantry.