The term “seller’s market” is all over social media these days. Favorable interest rates and an influx of millennial buyers have created demand for houses as well as home loans. Now is a GREAT time to sell! But while garnering an offer might be easier than in years past, good marketing still beats mediocrity any month of the year.
In other words, proper marketing will get you a better deal. If you want to invite an offer near the high end of your home’s range, the following list is for you.
Prep work pays. Some sellers order a pre-inspection from a licensed home inspector ($300-$500). Others consult with their Realtor regarding potential issues and fix things before their home goes onto the market. When demand for homes is high, sellers may be tempted to list a home as-is (i.e. without fixing it up first), but this will result in lowball offers. Consult with a professional to learn where the weakest links exist in your home and remedy those problems before you go to market. Some of the issues known to curtail a full-price offer include:
Decluttering is a big deal. This applies whether our economy is at the height of excess or the bottom of the barrel. Cluttered spaces are a big turn-off to buyers. Also, personal tastes matter, so consider repainting your rooms with neutral colors. Granted, this makes absolutely no financial sense. Things like bright paint colors and too much furniture really shouldn’t make a difference to potential buyers, but they make a difference nonetheless. Consider some of the following modifications before you present your home on the marketplace:
Clean, clean, clean. Make sure your home is spotless for every showing. If you’re averse to cleaning or don’t know where to start, hire a professional cleaning crew. Some areas of deep-cleaning that you might have overlooked until now include:
Check the attic. Get up into your attic. Inspect and clean the area. Pretend to be a buyer and look for any “red flags” that need addressed. Better to do this now than during the inspection phase of your transaction. Also, inspect any other forgotten areas like storage closets and cellars.
Introduce some ambiance. Make sure your home feels like home with the following touches:
First Impressions Matter. Buyers have choices. Put your home’s best face forward by doing the following.
Consider a Home Warranty. Home warranties have been around for several years now and can sweeten the deal for a prospective buyer. For around $400 you can offer buyers one year of enhanced insurance against unexpected repair costs. Longer coverage periods are also available.
When you’re ready to bring your product to market, don’t go it alone. Work with a real estate agent adept at marketing who can advise you on proper presentation of your home. Also, negotiate with buyers who are financially informed. Even in a seller’s market, enlisting the help of professionals puts you in the best position possible when it’s time to price, negotiate, and close on the sale of your home. Remember that “inking” the contract isn’t an end but a beginning. Your Ruoff Home Loan Specialist can recommend a great Realtor in your area if you’re not working with someone already. See the Porch Archive for more on this topic.
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