Understand first of all that there IS a difference between price and value. Price is the amount you are asking for the property. Value is buyer perceived, and this perception of value is influenced by many factors such as location, features, condition, comparison to other purchase option, etc. By attending to details that can have a positive impact on the value, sellers can significantly increase their chance of attracting qualified buyers willing to pay the asking price.
Some tips to achieve a positive impact on value are:
- Perceived size impacts value, even more so than actual square footage. Open floor plans make a room feel bigger than larger spaces with smaller rooms. Showing property that is furniture free, or at reduced clutter, helps to make the space feel bigger.
- Vacancy increases sale-ability. Property is easier to show and easier to sell, and quicker to take possession of when it is vacant at the time it is offered for sale. Evidence of problems to take possession of the property -- such as encroachments, or tenants who wont allow buyer tours -- negatively impact value. Vacancy also helps the buyer walk through the property imagining ownership. Sellers should remove personal trinkets and family pictures as well as being conveniently absent during a buyer tour.
- Cosmetics are important.
- Fresh paint will always add more value than it costs.
- Clean or new carpet/flooring adds more value than it costs.
- Landscaping adds more value than it costs. At the very minimum, make the entrance area neat.
- If you can, add some colorful flowers and new sod.
- Take care of the obvious! The spot on the ceiling from the roof leak takes thousands of dollars from the perceived value and the offer price.
- Condition affects value. Do a seller's home inspection to identify and fix the problem BEFORE closing. No point holding up your check a few extra days; plus a failed buyer's inspection could cost you the sale. Buyers will often bargain down your asking price to accomodate for property condition and repairs.
- If you can, remodel/update the kitchen and master bathroom. These two areas have a big impact on home buying decisions.
- Strategic renovations impact value and your bottom line. Don't spend more money to renovate the place than you can recapture in value on the sales price.