Are you thinking about selling your home? This week, I’m sharing an article about preparing your home for potential buyers by guest blogger Susan Molloy. – Janine
When selling your home, you have two goals: sell fast and fetch top dollar. Sometimes, that just takes a little luck and a seller’s market. Sometimes, it’s a little more complicated.
It’s not just massive structural damage and bad neighborhoods that keep people from buying. Especially in a city like New York, you’re competing against countless other people selling their homes. And in New York, buying a new apartment is a massive investment.
Selling your home is more than just putting up a few blurry pictures and writing a quick description online. You need to put yourself in your buyer’s shoes. What do they want and what do they need? How do you separate yourself from the pack?
1. First Impressions Count
The moment you decide to invite people to look at your home, you’re opening yourself up to scrutiny and judgment. The smallest mistake on your part could send that top-dollar client out of the door.
So, before you invite people to the location or even post a picture, make sure your home looks its best. Hire a professional photographer if you have to post pictures online (which you should). Otherwise, make sure the pictures you take are high quality.
2. Appeal Right from the Outside
First impressions count. Your potential buyers will begin judging your home from outside. So, go outside yourself and ask yourself: “would I buy my home?” Compare it to neighboring properties. Would you still pick yours? If you hesitate, it’s likely others will, too.
Curb appeal matters. It’s the true first impression people get of your place. And even psychologists will tell you that first impressions guide people’s ongoing perspective.
Clutter clouds the brain. And it makes your home harder to sell.
Get rid of anything that is in the way or unnecessary to the general aesthetic. Old magazines and old technology need to go. Ornaments, kitchen tools that have gathered dust on the shelves, and bathroom supplies shouldn’t be far behind.
If you have to, rent some storage space to keep the items that might affect the experience of potential buyers. In short: don’t distract your potential buyers with a bunch of your extra stuff.
Don’t forget to depersonalize as much as possible. Pictures and personal artifacts have to be taken down. You want your buyer to imagine their picture on the wall, not yours. Give them room to imagine your home as theirs, and the sale shouldn’t be too far behind.
5. Hire a professional organizer
To make sure your home is as presentable as it can be, consider hiring a professional organizer. Not only can they help you take care of these tasks, they’re professionals. They understand how to prepare homes that appeal to potential buyers.
A professional organizer can remove any doubts about the state of your home when the buyers come. It also saves you a lot of time while ensuring the process isn’t rushed. Find a professional organizer near you at NAPO.net.
This cannot be stressed enough. You don’t want to be saying, “I’ve been meaning to get that cleaned.” Don’t give your buyer a reason to run the tip of their finger over any surface.
Dust the skirting boards, clean and polish the windows, dust the light fixtures and furniture, vacuum, polish the taps and mirrors, and scrub the oven. Clean anything that needs to be clean like the entire sale depends on it.
7. Repair and Revamp
This might sound obvious, but it’s so easy to forget to replace that burnt out light bulb in the closet. Or you’re so used to the leaky tap you don’t see anything wrong with it anymore. Those little details you’ve neglected will turn away your buyer, no matter how minor.
Make sure your doors and windows open and close properly; replace the shower curtain; buy new cushion covers; remove wallpaper and paint the wall; and eradicate any odors.
Remember your buyer is excited about your home. But they are also looking for a reason to keep looking.
Susan Molloy has been living on the upper west side for the last 20 years. After countless suggestions that she look into doing real estate instead of bartending between acting jobs she finally took the plunge this past fall. She is thrilled to be working at Bohemia with such a great group of people.
Susan has numerous voiceover commercials running including spots for Capital One and Chubb Insurance. Her theater company, The Fugitive Kind, will be producing it’s first full length play late in 2014 and her lastest movie “Asockalypse” will be out in theaters this summer.