Selling a house is for most people an emotional process. A critical factor for selling your house successfully is to be emotionally ready to let go. Why is this so important? As much as your house is your home when you live there, the reality is that once you put your house on the market it is no longer your home, it is a house, it becomes a product that is for sale. As a product the emotional focus should no longer be on you, but on getting the home buyers emotionally involved and fall in love with your product because selling this product is crucial. If you can’t sell this house then the deposit on the new hourse, all the moving companies Roanoke you’ve looked at and all the other hassles of moving would have been for nothing.
So, are you ready?
To understand what needs to be done you need to understand what today’s home buyers are looking for. In today’s real estate market in Connecticut, buyers have a large selection of properties available to choose from and therefore they also have become pickier which house they select to call their next home.
- Over 90% of home buyers look online first before they decide to take a look at a property or even contact a real estate agent.
- They base their decision to see a property based on the first impression they gather online through the online photos.
- Home buyers are savvy and shop around.
- They don’t want to do any work prior to moving in.
- Home buyer’s look not just for move in ready conditions, but also for turnkey, up-to-date features.
So, how can this be achieved the best way?
Preparing a house for sale is a 3 steps process:
Step 1: Repairs and Updates
- Ask yourself: “Are there any repairs that I have put off for a while?” – Well, now is the time to take care of them.
- As a seller you are aware that a potential home buyer will have a home inspection. Many home owners postpone regular maintenance and thus are unaware of the subtle deterioration of their home over time. You may worry of what the results of the home buyer’s inspection will bring. “We have seen many home sales lost and offers lowered because of a long list of deferred simple maintenance items. Most of these items can easily be eliminated through preparation by a home owner with average skills or a handyman” says Joe DeLaurentis, owner of Tiger Home & Building Inspections in Connecticut. A Seller’s Preparation Inspection will take the mystery and surprises out and will point you into the right direction fixes that will avoid potentially losing a sale.
- Are your tiles in the kitchen and bathrooms not chipped or broken?
- Inspect the paint condition thoroughly and put a fresh coat of paint on. Paint colors are an important choice when selling a house. Use up-to date colors that are not too personal, but accentuates the nice architectural features of each room. Paint colors have to nicely flow from room to room. If you are not sure about which color, consult with a professional home stager. A stager is familiar with what buyers are looking for and which colors sell.
- As a professional home stager in Fairfield county, CT I have seen many houses. One of the easy fixes that I see in so many houses in our area is the need to update lighting fixtures. These do not have to be expensive lighting fixtures, but updating them from all brass to oil brushed bronze, or bushed nickel, will make a big impact in the value perception of your house.
- Another great improvement of the visual appeal is adding frames to frame-less mirrors in the bathrooms. MirrorMate Frames, are easy to install and will immediately update the look of your bathroom.
- How do your carpets and hardwood floors look? Consider professional cleaning of carpets and refinishing floors.
- It may also be worth looking for any pests that are lurking in your home, including termites. You are far less likely to sell your home if it has a pest infestation. I would recommend you to have a look at a termite control Los Angeles firm, or one closer to you to inspect your house for any pests. They will be able to deal with your pest issue if you have one. Then you will have peace at mind if you know your house isn’t infested and is clean.
- If you are a home buyer – how much would you pay for the kitchen on the left? Would you even go and visit a house with that kitchen? How much for the kitchen on the right? It’s the same kitchen, just some updates were made. An investment that is well worth and results in a higher and faster sale!
Step 2: Declutter & Cleaning
After living for a while in your home, it is natural that things accumulate. While living there you may not realize how much stuff you actually have. Since you are selling real estate, the “real estate” space that your house or apartment has needs to be shown off. It needs to show ample space.
Decluttering involves many areas of the home, including, but not limited to:
- Bookcases – most bookcases and bookshelves need to lose about 50% of the items on them. A well dressed bookshelf does not just stack books, but is well balanced in visual weight and includes creative arrangements.
- Closets – organize them neatly, anything that you no longer wear or that is not seasonal should be removed and stored away. Remove all the chicken wire hangers and get nice wooden hangers. It adds luxury to your closet. Sort by colors, type and length of clothes.
- Amount of furniture in the room – a room needs to be well balanced and have just the right amount of furniture.
- Kitchen cabinets – home buyers will open your closets and cabinets. Make sure they are well organized and show plenty of space. Clear off your counter tops.
- Remove personal photos, trophies, collections, religious artifacts – you want buyers to be able to visualize themselves living in this house. If they are everywhere being reminded that someone else is living there, it is hard for them to imagine their own lifestyle in the space.
TIP: invest in a storage unit to keep extra furniture, clothes, books, etc. or use something like keepsafe self storage so your home appears to have plenty of space.
Make sure everything is sparkling clean. No cob webs, bathrooms, kitchen, every angle of the home. Cleanliness portrays an image that your property is well maintained.
Step 3: Showcasing
Now it is time to set up the stage.
The placement of the furniture is very important. When arranging the furniture for a house sale it is not necessarily the same way you would be positioning it when living there. It needs to accentuate the positive features of the room. A good professional home stager will be able to help you with the optimal set up.
- Freshen up the look of worn sofas with a slip cover.
- Add color with attractive accent pillows.
- Strategically place home décor.
- Use display towels, which you do not use for the daily use.
- Make sure to have the right amount and right size of artwork on the walls – not too much,
not too little.
- Give your house a model home feel with a warm touch.
I hope these general guidelines were helpful. Working with a professional stager will give you the the insight of how to prepare with YOUR home. Engaging a stager for a consultation is the first step. From there most stagers have several options how to work with you if you want further assistance. Showcasing your house by using a great professional stager will give you the additional edge to further stand out from your competition.
Congratulations, you are now ready for the spotlights on the stage of real estate sales!!
Regardless of the price range of your property, professional photographs will highlight your now well prepared home the best and will attract the eyes of potential buyers when they look online for the next property to visit. Don’t forget, over 90% of buyers form the first impression online and decide on those photos whether they want to see your house or not. Do everything to get on the “I want to see” list rather then them just browsing by. Here are some examples of what beautiful professional photography of staged homes can do. Check out these photos from Amy Dolego of Winton Studios.
If you want to learn more details about how to prepare your house for sale, we would like to invite you to our FREE seminar in Stamford on January 24th. For more details, click on the image below: