If 2016 is your year to move, the winter is the perfect time to prepare your home ready for the competitive market. People can often times find this part of the process to be a daunting task but with a little work, your home can be sold in no time to the perfect buyer!
It’s time to de-clutter
Many real estate professionals will agree that when you are getting ready to sell your home that decluttering is key. Your home should be spacious and beautiful as possible but it’s hard to see the beauty when a pile of old books and papers reside in the corner and staring at everyone walking through the door. Take an inventory of your home as you walk from room to room and eliminate the “eyesores”. Spend a weekend creating a pile for trash pick-up, donations, or to be placed in storage. This includes organizing your closets and pantries because- believe it or not- prospective buyers open these doors, leaving no stone underturned. Best of all, it will less packing for you when the day arrives to move out!
According to bankrate.com, curb appeal is important to 71% of potential home buyers. 71%, people! When selling your home, your goal is to get them through the front door (and, of course, to make an offer) but this means you might have to invest time and money. By no means do you have to spend a small fortune to make your lawn look like it’s a photograph from a magazine. However, it may require tasks such as pressure washing the house, driveway, walkway, and mailbox. Make sure old plants and flowers plants are removed and weeded. If life is too busy to maintain your lawn especially during the warmer months, hire a service to cut and edge your lawn to keep it spruce. Feel free to add finishing touches such as a bird feeder or a rocker for the front porch.
A dirty home is one of the most popular factors of turning off buyers. This is probably one of the most challenging parts of placing a home on the market. At any given moment, you can receive a call of your next showing. The constant housecleaning can make anybody exhausted but start off with a thorough deep cleaning. If cleaning isn’t your forte, then hire a cleaning service to make your home sparkle. This includes steam vacuuming, polishing hardwood floors, cleaning your windows and baseboards, and dusting from floor to ceiling. Light housekeeping throughout the week such as taking care of dirty laundry and dishes, cleaning the counters after every use, and a quick sweep through the bathrooms are essential.
With this being said, the cleanliness of a home should also bring attention to odors such as cigarette smells, pet dander, and unpleasantries that may make people stop dead in their tracks at your door and deter them from entering. A thorough cleaning and air-out (and investing in clean-smelling candles!) will help in this area.
If you’ve lived in your house for years, then it may be time to look at home decor through new lenses. The best starting point is leafing through home magazines to see the latest trends. Research popular paint color. Throw a new rug under the dining room table. Replace the yellowing lamp shade with one of a vibrant color. Put away (temporarily) lots of photos of family and friends- you want people to feel like this could be their home! Switch out outdated hardware and light fixtures. These small changes can transform a room.
Home sellers can become a little overwhelmed and concerned at expenses when it comes to updating kitchens and bathrooms. Look into more affordable alternatives for updates such as concrete or soapstone countertops opposed to granite. We all know that hardwood floors look fabulous in any home and you can still get the hardwood look without the steep prices. Luckily, flooring has come a long way in recent years with more natural approaches. Bamboo and cork flooring are great alternatives.
Functional yet comfortable
Staging a room can often times require looking at it from a different perspective. The goal is for the room to be inviting yet provide functionality and space. If you are unsure of where to start, enlist the help of a friend or professional to give you advice.
Whether it be furniture or decor, the pieces in a room don’t have to match but it should create an environment that plays well together. Bring personality by showcasing a dramatic fireplace or playing up exposed wooden beams or a speciality window. Lighting can either be your friend or enemy! Remember that providing the right amount of lighting through natural light and fixtures can bring out your home’s best features or spotlight the dust collected on the mantel.
Use a high-quality digital camera to take photos of each room for marketing purposes. Be mindful of angles and remember that homebuyers want to see your kitchens and bathrooms!
If you need the professional help of a contractor or handyman to make necessary repairs, consider hiring them during the colder months. January and February tend to be slower months and may offer reduced rates.
Check your home value
Want to know the value of your home? Consult a licensed real estate agent in your area. They will be able to give you advice and lead you through the process. If you live in the Valley of the Sun or surrounding area, contact Erin Newman at 480-466-8193 for a consultation.