Selling your home can seem intimidating, but it doesn’t need to be. While the process is complicated, there are more resources than ever before for the private seller. But proper preparation is key. These five tips for selling your home can give you a headstart on the process, but consider them just a start for actually getting your home listed and then sold.
- Focus on the Little Things
How your home looks is obviously one of the most important factors in how well it sells, but the devil is in the details. And if you’ve been living in your home for years, it can be easy to lose track of what might and might not look good to a prospective buyer. For instance, don’t clear out your closets completely but do leave them half filled and neatly organized. This will provide the most flattering perspective for your closet space.
And clear out any sign of pets. While they may be a warm presence in your own home, allergies from pet hair or the wayward smell of a litter box can really dampen the enthusiasm for your house. Also be sure to remove personal effects. You want visitors to be able to picture themselves in the home, and that’s harder to do when there’s a family vacation photo staring at them from over the mantle.
- Keep Your Attention on the Kitchen
The kitchen is the heart of the home, and it’s increasingly becoming a rival to the living room as the center for social activity in the household. So it’s no surprise that the quality of your kitchen can make or break the sale of your home. Go with simple color schemes that buyers can project their own dreams onto, and make sure the lighting on your kitchen is on point.
We’d generally recommend that you be cautious about remodeling before a sale, but kitchens are the exception to the rule. That doesn’t mean you should drain your savings building an entirely new kitchen, but a little bit of TLC can raise the valuation of your entire home. Just be sure to not get too personal or kitschy with it. Your goal is to draw in new buyers, and more unique designs are going to limit your potential market.
- Don’t Neglect the Exterior
For Sale signs continue to be a surprisingly effective tool for selling a home even with the vast online resources available – but if your lawn is overgrown and your driveway filled with clunkers, few people will take the time to even see the beautiful interior. First impressions are important, and that’s true even if you’ve already lured prospective buyers in with a strong pitch.
Don’t be afraid to go all out on your lawn. Tidy up the landscaping, make sure all your lighting is bright and appealing, and clear out any lawn ornaments or signs that might turn prospective buyers off from the property. You might want to consider bringing in a professional photographer to really highlight the best qualities of your property.
- Use a Flat Fee Listing Service
One advantage that agents used to have over private sellers is their access to listings. An MLS, or Multiple Listing Service, will spread your listing across as many platforms as possible. And flat fee listing services take the guesswork out of the equation by charging you a single flat fee for spreading the word about your property.
Flat fee MLS platforms like HomeLister offer a whole suite of services. These include a chat platform for handling your negotiations, lockboxes for safely setting up visits, and the ability to create virtual tours for clients. The ability to get professional services and only have to pay a flat fee once you’ve sold is a huge boon for a private seller.
- Price Your Home Accurately
A listed home can be a ticking time bomb. The longer it stays on the market, the lower its value drops. That’s why it’s important to price your property accurately. While gambling on a high listing price can produce big results, it’s still a gamble – and it’s a gamble that will cost you time and money. Take the time to understand the market, both locally and on a larger scale. And be honest with yourself about the value of your home.