Cost-Effective Tips To Help Sell a Property

Home Inspector with Pillar To Post
In today’s real estate market, sellers need additional advice on how to cost-effectively prepare their homes in order to sell quickly. With an abundance of homes on the market, waiting several months to sell a home could leave many recession-plagued sellers in financial distress.

For example, in October 2008 the median existing home price was the lowest since March 2004 at $183,200. This means that a home owner who lived in his home for 4-1/2 years is seeing the value of the home as the same or less as when the home was bought (, November 2008).

The good news is that although some homes may need extensive upgrades or renovations, many may only require simple changes. For a limited cost, or no cost at all, home sellers can fix their homes to appear more appealing to prospective buyers.

Here are some quick, and inexpensive, fixes to sell a home more quickly:

· Focus on outdoor aesthetics. Cut back overgrown shrubs and plants. Hose down a dusty dirty house. Sweep the driveway, sidewalk and any stairs. Cost: $00.00

· Eliminate odors. Before showing the house, open windows to let fresh air in; use air fresheners or baking soda to rid odors; sprinkle baking soda on the carpet and leave it for at least 10 minutes to make carpets smell clean. Cost: approximately $15.

· Wash windows. Purchase a window cleaning product to avoid professional costs. Clean windows make a home look well-kept and outdoor views more crisp. Cost: approximately $25.

In addition, consider scheduling a prelisting home inspection, an inspection conducted prior to putting the home on the market. These early inspections aid homeowners in identifying problem areas that can be easily repaired. For example, existing electrical, heating, or plumbing systems may need to be upgraded, or mold growth in a basement may require professional advice on how to eliminate dampness.

The home inspector can also suggest additional work to be done and what could be postponed. And, remember, a home inspector is an objective third party consultant who does not stand to profit from work suggested. A good assessment of the current state of a home and its systems will allow for more accurate planning and estimating, as homeowners prepare a home to sell.

Comments (7)

Michael Lee
Frog Realty - Tallahassee, FL

Nice post.  Great information to provide.

Apr 19, 2009 04:22 PM
Shane OnullGorman
Eau Claire Realty, Inc. - Eau Claire, WI
Eau Claire Wisconsin, Real Estate Agent & Realtor- Buy or Sell

I think you have some great ideas and you are right, its mostly the hard work and not cost.

Apr 19, 2009 04:33 PM
Harry F. D'Elia III
WEDO Real Estate and Beyond, LLC - Phoenix, AZ
Investor , Mentor, GRI, Radio, CIPS, REOs, ABR

It has been my experience over the past year that labor and material costs have declined making it the right time to spend money homes. Tell me about your experiences. Please feel free to comment across America.

Apr 19, 2009 04:48 PM
Matt Grohe
RE/MAX Concepts - Des Moines, IA
Serving the metro since 2003

Thomas: Cost effective is in big demand these days, and you deliver the goods. Thanks Man!

Apr 19, 2009 04:59 PM
Wallace S. Gibson, CPM
Gibson Management Group, Ltd. - Charlottesville, VA

Replace the FRONT DOOR MAT! Less than $30....put the old one at the back/patio door...a dirty/worm entry mat downgrades the property!!

Apr 22, 2009 12:40 AM
Jon Wnoroski
America's 1st Choice RH Realty Co., Inc. - Green, OH
Summit County Realtor

Hi Thomas - Getting a home ready for the market is important.  We always do a pre-listing "walk through" and make a list of things that need to be done before we put a home on the market.  Not all sellers fully comply; however one that did (in every detail) sold his home in two days.

Apr 25, 2009 11:27 PM
Adam Malachi
A 2 Z Realty LLC - Castle Rock, CO

Excellent post as usual Tom! Great information!

Thank you very much for sharing!

Mar 08, 2010 04:07 AM