So you've made the decision to sell your home. Congratulations! The summer of 2012 has proven to be a great time to list your home for sale.
Not so fast! In order to assure that ready, willing and able home buyers will bring you an offer, they need to be able to access your home. This means that you have a few responsibilities as the home seller. While your Realtor is marketing your home and attracting qualified buyers, you will also need to do your part:
- Put the Lockbox on the Door. This is for convenience as well as safety. Your Realtor will provide a lock box for use when buyers come to see your property. This little box holds the key to your door(s), and is protected by a code. Only licensed Realtors will be able to access the lockbox when they have set up a showing. This is much safer than leaving it under the mat, and much more convenient than having to leave work to meet the buyer and their agent at your house to open up!
- Put the Dogs Away. Better Yet- Take Them With You! It may not be practical to take your dog with you to work, especially during the summer months. But remember that you are suddenly letting strangers into your dog's territory. If they have a crate, it's a very good idea to crate them during showings. If you have a neighbor who can keep them at their house, or a dog walker who can be on call, that's even better. No matter how friendly your family dog is, it is asking too much for your dog to be calm when new people are regularly ringing the bell and opening the door when you aren't home. Buyers may also be walking through the house with little ones, and they can be frightening to even the most mild mannered pup.
- Clean up. Get the dishes out of the sink and into the dishwasher, empty the garbage cans, and vacuum. Make the beds and pick up the toys. You want buyers to be attracted to the house itself, not distracted by the smell of garbage or the sight of your unmade bed!
- Let the Buyers See Your House! I cannot emphasize this enough. While buyers are first attracted to your home by the photographs and virtual tour, they won't write an offer until they have been able to walk through it and see it. If you have a scheduling conflict, suggest another time. If you know that you need a hour's notice to pick up and get out, or to arrange for your dog sitter to remove the dogs, it's ok to put that into the Showing Instructions. But remember that if you refuse a showing, that buyer may just move on and not come back. Try to make it as easy as possible for a potential buyer to see your property.
- Receive Criticism Constructively. Buyers' Agents will usually provide feedback to your agent, which will then be shared with you. Pay attention to what is being said. Does the same issue seem to keep coming up? There are things you can control, like paint colors, how clean the house is, how easy it is to schedule showings; and things you cannot, like neighborhood amenities and location. Your Realtor can help you review the feedback and make adjustments to price or condition of the home if necessary.
Questions about ways to implement these tips? Wondering what your home's most likely selling price would be? Call me 720-341-5253!