It is no mystery that all Sellers’ want their listing to stand out from the crowd. Why? To sell faster of course, but how can we do that? Also, how do we do it on a limited budget? It is really quite simple but many people do not want to put in the small amount of work it takes, which is unfortunate for them and a boost for your listing.
1. Pricing your home properly. The number of listings has increased daily during 2014 and the number of buyers starting their home search online is above 90% and growing. If you price your home at $199,999 versus $200,000 you could be missing buyers that are in your price range. Spend the dollar here and you could catch the bottom range of buyer that is in the $200,000 to $250,000 price range. Listing at $199,999 is potentially missing an entire buyer segment that likely has more buying power than the one searching for homes in the $150,000 to $200,000 price range. Also consider not being the most highly priced home in your neighborhood if you expect buyers to take it seriously when the market is no longer increasing in value.
2. Professional photos of your home. This may be an expense your Realtor will pay as part of the listing. If it is not a part of their standard practice, however, you can offer to pay the expense which is typically minimal and well worth it. Once again, we know that people are searching online for homes and what sells better than the photos? Let the professional help you stage the rooms and the lighting and your REALTOR will do the rest.
3. Curb Appeal is super important. Not only does this help with the look of your photos but when people drive up to view your home too. The important thing to focus on here is the maintenance of the outside of the home and the yard. Be sure to replace any dead plants in the landscaping. If the season is right colorful flowers are always appealing. If your home has chipped, cracked or faded doors or trim be sure to give them a simple touch to give the home a fresh look. If your driveway has oil or other stains be sure to pressure wash them out. These tips should make the outside of your home look inviting and clean.
4. To continue on the topic of cleanliness, it is also important to be sure your home is kept very clean for showings. Declutter the home and reduce the amount of personal items around the home. The buyer needs to be able to imagine themselves living in the space. So if you remove unseasonal clothing items from your closets; be sure everything has a place (otherwise box it up); and arrange furniture to maximize your living spaces so your prospective buyers will be able to see past your belongings, and the living spaces will appear larger than usual.
5. Routine maintenance is the last but certainly most important item on this list. The bottom line is that no one wants to fix minor or major repairs. Be sure to fix those small holes in the wall, touch up paint, leaky faucet, runny toilet, etc. Do not let your buyer’s imagination turn a minor problem into a major one. Furthermore consider adding an update kitchen faucet or shower heads. Another nice touch is updated outlet and light switch covers that stand out against the paint color. Newer door knobs or handles are also a nice inexpensive touch to give the home a more modern look that stands out during the tour of your home.
All of these suggestions can become a reality in your listing on a very meager budget but could mean the difference of thousands of dollars between how quickly you sell and for how much.
Chris Miller, MBA, REALTOR®
Premier Real Estate