Although most people assume they have ample time to get their home prepared to hit the market for the spring, if you aren’t ahead of the game by now, you might be falling behind. It might be called the “spring market,” but it really starts in early February, which means that the clock is ticking. To get your home list-ready, cross these things off of your home selling checklist.
1. Do a Walk-Through as a Potential Buyer, not Seller
It is easy to block out all of those things that aren’t complete or that need to be repaired when you live around them day after day. The best way to get your home ready to sell is to have a plan of attack. That requires that you walk through and inspect your home from a buyer’s perspective. But since it is sometimes too difficult to take off the blinders we build, you might want to consider either having a real estate professional evaluate your home or to pay for a home inspection.
A home inspection might cost money, but it will ensure that you aren’t left with any surprises that might be a deal-breaker when you do have a prospective buyer. It will also give you some negotiation power once a prospective homebuyer makes an offer.
2. Hire a Contractor to Handle Little Projects
Sure, you can probably do a whole lot of repairs yourself, but do you have the time? Quite likely, if you did, you would have done them yourself by now! To ensure that your home is ready to list in time for spring, it is better to bite the bullet and hire someone who will get it done in time. The cost of hiring a contractor makes a whole lot more sense than devaluing your home by not having a good showing or by taking too long to do things yourself and missing your spring timeline.
3. Clean, Depersonalize and Declutter
It’s a New Year, and the New Year is all about starting fresh. Photos drawn by your children mean a lot to you, but they can be distracting to potential home buyers. Since you intend to move, get ahead of the game by clearing out, decluttering, and taking down special and personal items. They might make your heart shine, but they can distract those who want to picture your home as their own. Also, putting away valuables is always a good idea when you are having people walk through your home.
4.Maximize Your Curbside Appeal
Many homebuyers make up their mind about a house simply by driving up. The curbside appeal of your home is highly important to create a good impression before a potential buyer even enters. It is a good idea to clean up your landscaping from the fall and winter. And also consider making repairs to siding, a fresh coat of paint to the soffits and fascia board, or power washing your exterior spaces. A little bit of attention to the exterior of your home goes a long way in making a good first impression. You never get a second chance to make one, so put some time and effort into how your home will show from the street.
5. A Fresh Coat of Paint
The number one thing that you can do to freshen up your home for listing is to consider having your home painted. If you have little ones who love to put their hands on the walls or little furry friends who aren’t so friendly to them, a fresh coat of paint can make your home look new again! The small amount that it costs to paint your home can increase its overall value considerably, so look at it as an investment. Not only will it make your home more competitive; it will hide any imperfections that might keep a homebuyer from making an offer. When choosing paint colors, try to go with neutral tones that won’t turn a homebuyer off. The point is to allow a potential buyer to see your home as their new one. Having a neutral color is like an empty canvas for the next homeowner.
6. Fix Loose Handles
Homebuyers can be pretty nosy, and most like to kick the tires a little. Make sure to fix any loose doorknobs or handles around your home. If they try and open a kitchen cabinet and the handles are loose, that might make them think that your home has not been well-maintained. You want to give the impression that your home has been well-loved, which will make a potential homebuyer love it too.
7. Check for Odors
If you have any foul odors in your home, that is a huge turnoff to home buyers. Although you might become accustomed to different odors and smells around your home, potential homebuyers will be on high alert if something is off-putting. Just to be safe, have a third-party run a “smell check” to see if there is something you are missing. And if a deep cleaning doesn’t take care of it, consider strategically placing room deodorizers. But make sure that they aren’t overwhelming or strong. Sometimes trying to mask odors by creating overpowering ones can be even more detrimental.
8. Consider Hiring a Stager
Once you have cleaned out all of your personal items, consider staging your home. According to statistics, a staged home will sell for 17% more than a non-staged home. And, when staged, 95% of homes will sell in eleven days or more, which is 87% quicker than unstaged ones. The small cost of staging a home pales in comparison to the benefits that it provides to you.
Now that the New Year’s ball has dropped and the holidays are behind us, it is time to get working The spring market is when 85% of homes sell, which is why it is so critical to be prepared and ready to go. If you haven’t started getting your home ready to sell, now is a perfect time to dig your heels in! If you need help preparing for your home listing, sound advice about how to make your home more attractive, or an evaluation of what your home is worth, I am here to help.
I would love to help you get your home ready to list by walking you through the process and giving you sound advice. Not only will Sea Turtle Properties come in and take the guess work out of getting your home ready to list; we will walk you through the entire home-selling experience from start to finish. Contact me at Sea Turtle Properties today and we can prepare a home selling checklist to get your home list-ready for the spring market!