Want to sell your home in any market and get your asking price?
You don’t want to leave money on the table when selling your home. If you’ve put hours of work into your house to make it “home,” you want to be recognized for that. Even if you haven’t put tons of effort into upgrades, you’ve at least maintained your home until now, and you should benefit from that, as well.
There are some universal tips out there to sell your home. The key is to maximize your time and decrease the work it takes to sell. This is why we’ve prepared the top 10 items you should have on your to-do list. Doing more might cut into your time off work that you could be spending with family and friends or even cut into your profits.
Whether you are selling your home in a buyer or seller’s market, these tips are essential to, at minimum, getting your asking price on the sale.
Tip #10: Maximize Space (And Get Rid Of Clutter)
Your home has endless potential when it comes to creating space. You can move furniture around to make the living spaces seem larger. There are ways to hang pictures and curtains to create the illusion of heightened ceilings. Sometimes even the colors of the walls can make a space feel bigger!
Homes & Gardens¹ suggests:
- Choose a simple color scheme for the room. Especially when selling a home, stick to a neutral color palette to let potential buyers feel like they could make that space their own.
- Use warm colors.
- Don’t make the room feel sterile. Add cozy textures.
- Decorate with mirrors to open up the space.
- Have lighting from the floor to ceiling. Wall lights could make the space look taller.
- Remove bulky and oversized furniture.
- Lighten up the curtains to make the space feel airy and open.
As you’re starting to pack up to move, it’s a great time to clear the clutter, too! Don’t just hide the mess. Deal with it. People will look in closets and hiding places while doing walkthroughs in your home. They’ll find that mess you’re trying to avoid thinking about.
So, what are other options?
- Go through your items and take what you don’t want to your local donation store.
- Rent a storage space! This is especially useful if you know what you want to pack early for your move. Just put it in storage until you’re ready to go, AND it will be out of the way for walkthroughs.
Make your home walkthrough ready by eliminating clutter and maximizing the space!
Tip #9: Highlight Your Home With Good Lighting
A home with lots of natural lighting is more welcoming to buyers. Walk through your home at different times of the day and notice what areas could be brighter.
If bulbs are out or missing, replace them before walkthroughs begin. As walkthroughs and open houses are scheduled, open up drapes and shades before the viewings. Turn on lights that accentuate each room. A table lamp in an otherwise dark corner could help people viewing your home see more potential in the space than they otherwise would have.
Also, make sure to clean all lamps and overhead lights. Seeing layers of dust will make people look for other areas that aren’t cleaned and possibly see the house as “dirty.”
Tip #8: Clean, Repair, And Upgrade Where It Counts
Your house should be nearly Mary-Poppins-level spotless for showings. Put everything in its place. Wash, and put away, the dishes. Put out clean towels. Sweep, mop, and vacuum. Fluff pillows, fold blankets and make the bed. Dust and wipe down windows and mirrors (especially if you have glass doors and pets — the drool and nose boops aren’t very welcoming).
If anything, clean your house like your mother-in-law is coming to visit. Too busy? Understandable. Hire professional cleaners to do the job for you!
What parts of your house could use a little TLC? Take the time to go through one room at a time and look for tiny fixes that could benefit you and your asking price. Look for all breaks and leaks. Then fix them. If there are water stains, address them. Flimsy doors or faulty handles? Reinforce them.
If you’re working with a Realtor or real estate agent, ask them what repairs should be done in and around your home. Take their suggestions to heart and get them done before photos are taken, and showings begin.
The kitchen is a big selling point. If you have an outdated kitchen, do what you can to modernize it. You can easily switch out cabinet hardware, paint, and update lighting at a minimum.
Talk to your Realtor about any other changes, such as getting new countertops or installing a backsplash. These more expensive upgrades could increase your asking price a good amount!
Tip #7: Relocate Your Pets & Get Rid Of Odors
You love your pets. However, potential buyers might not. Not everyone is an animal lover, and even some people who are don’t love to see the fur and mess of an animal that isn’t theirs. As you go through and clean your home, make sure to look at all the areas your pets frequently use and wash them extensively. Dirt on dogs often gets transferred to walls, so make sure to inspect those and clean them as needed.
Take your pets to another location during showings and open houses if possible.
Even if you don’t think your animals smell, a distinct odor comes with owning pets. Even without pets, some smells might have become unpleasant over time, such as trashcans, dishwashers and disposals, and microwaves.
It’s an excellent idea to eliminate² some smells:
- Light non-toxic scented candles.
- Spread baking soda over the carpet, leave for a few hours and vacuum it up. The baking soda will absorb foul odors.
- Sprinkle baking soda at the bottom of the trashcan.
- Put fresh or leftover citrus rinds into the garbage disposal and then turn it on to grind them up.
- Boil mulling spices on the stove (mmm…smells like fall).
Tip #6: Make Your Home A House
When you moved into your home, you saw all the possibilities of how you could make it your home. Now, as you are selling, it’s time to make it a house again.
Perhaps you have painted walls bold colors, installed unique fixtures, or have an eclectic style. Take the time to paint the walls a neutral, warm color and take your style down a notch or two. Interested buyers want to see what you first saw in your house: potential. That only comes with a nearly blank canvas they can create from.
Tip #5: Landscaping & Home Exterior Work
As people drive up to your home, you want them to feel excited even as they pull into the driveway. Give your house a facelift by trimming bushes, killing and removing weeds, and mowing the lawn. Big brown patches? Maybe it’s time to lay some sod or even xeriscape³ part of the lawn. Flower beds are also a great way to brighten up your yard if you’re selling during warmer months..
Tip #4: Take High-Quality Photos And Consider Video
Consider hiring a photographer to take professional photos of your house. They will be able to capture the correct angles and lighting to make every room look incredible.
Have you ever felt bored in video call meetings? It has been said that directing meetings via video calls requires the host to give 30% more energy to have the same effect as an in-person meeting.
That’s also true of house photos. It’s not that you want to take pictures that make your house look nothing like it does in person. Images need to be brighter than your home is naturally, but not washed out. They need to accentuate what’s already there.
More than ever, people are buying homes from out of state. This is a great reason to consider virtual tours of your home. It costs extra, but it also means that your home is viewable from anywhere!
The hard truth is that listing pictures and videos could make or break the interest in your house. Make it shine online!
Tip #2: Price It Right
What are other homes like yours selling for in your area? Go online and take a look at what the market is looking like. If you are working with a Realtor, they will do this for you and make sure that you are listing at a fair price.
Do your research and don’t price too high.
Tip #3: Market Your Home
What channels are you marketing your home through? If you’re not using a Realtor or real estate agent, consider how and where you want to list your home.
Then, you’ll want to write a listing description⁴ that draws people in and makes them want to know more!
Use all the channels you can for marketing your home. Social media counts!
Put a “For Sale” sign in the front yard. Let people know you’re selling! Make sure there is a number people can contact if they’re driving by and interested in a showing. You can also put a “Google This Address” space on the sign to remind people they don’t have to call to get more information.
Tip #1: Hire A Realtor You Trust
You don’t want just anyone to help you sell your home. You can, and should, interview real estate professionals and choose one that you connect with.
Some questions you can ask include:
- How long have you been in real estate (in your area)?
- How many homes did you sell in the last year?
- How many of those sales were at or exceeded the listing price?
- How long do your listings typically take to sell?
- What does communication look like before, during, and after the sale?
Don’t just ask for references from friends and family who “loved” their Realtor’s personality. While that is helpful, it might not be suitable for you. Take some time to research top agents in your area, interview them, and ask for references.
Experienced Realtors will understand the market and get you the best price for your home.
BONUS Tip: Make A Great First Impression
This simple tip is too-often overlooked. All the little “extras” really make a difference when selling your home. Put out some fresh flowers in a lovely vase. Add to your entryway to make it more inviting. Replace your “Welcome” mat and sweep the front porch.
Every part of your home should tell visitors they are welcome and that you prepared the house just for their arrival. Make them feel special, and you’ll see that return in the sale.
Use These Tips And Sell Your Home With Confidence
Now that you have your short to-do list, go and conquer!
While every house is different, the recipe for selling is reasonably straightforward. These home selling tips come from many years of experience and outline how to guarantee an excellent outcome for any seller.
If you aren’t sure where to start or want to get even more specific, call the Vantegic Real Estate team anytime! We are here to help you have the best selling experience possible.