One of the difficult things to do in terms of listing homes for sale is putting a dollar value on upgrades and/or worn elements in a house that may need replacing. Sellers obviously want to know the bottom line with all things optimal and their home would sell at the suggested list price. We all want to get the most we can out of our homes and needing to improve the presentation can often be something that sellers do not want to do (i.e. replacing worn/stained carpeting, painting walls, etc.). But these minors fixes to the overall presentation can actually cost you more. The reason is that buyers are trying to picture themselves living in the house when they visit. If they are noticing a lot of 'fixes' or changes they need to make, they are just seeing the costs to that in their minds. This can have two effects on their decision: 1) It will lower their offer taking into account the necessary repairs, 2) Offers will not come in and will increase the time on the market which is often followed by price decreases and/or lower offers later on. Often times those presentation pieces can end up costing thousands more than they would have been to do them in the first place.
Here are the top five areas of presentation to look at prior to listing your home for sale that can really pay off later:
- Landscaping an 'curb appeal'. The front and overall outside of a house is the first impression. Great 'packages' leave us all wanting to see more. In the case of 'curb appeal', we want to see the inside. Here are some inexpensive things that can truly make a huge impact on your outside presntation:
- Keep the lawn mowed and weeded.
- Weed the garden areas and plant small colorful flowering plants.
- Paint any worn or chipped fixtures on the outside
- Replace any washed out or old mulch
- Trim back overgrown trees
- Keep the lawn mowed and weeded.
- Worn or stained carpeting. If you can, replace with hardwood floors. Hardwood flooring is extremely popular and much easier to maintain. It makes a great impact. If not, make sure that carpets are steam cleaned and vacuumed before every showing.
- Wall colors. Although we all have our own tastes in terms of colors in our homes, overly dramtic colors can often take the focus off of all of those other great things in your home. Use soft earth tones throughout with subtle shade differences. This type of color scheme with white trim has a really great presentation with a splash of elegance.
- Avoid leaving rooms vacant. If you are not living in the home and have extra tasteful furniture you can spare, definitely do so. Vacant houses are very difficult for buyers to visualize how the rooms would appear living there. Empty rooms can also appear smaller as well.
- Avoid clutter everywhere. It's definitely clean up time when listing your house for sale. Box up all the things you truly don't need and store away or donate. Kids rooms we all know can be a challenge. Make it contest time. Let them know that pictures are going to be taken and those pictures are going to be seen in a lot of places online.
- Keep those appliances clean and in working order. If you are including appliances in the sale, make sure they are clean and in working order. Buyers that find an appliance that looks great but doesn't work now has to take into account the cost to replace it.
- Sweep up that garage and move any stored item to the sides. Garages can often be storage places fora a lot of us. Buyers still want to see the size and it becomes very difficult to do with items scattered throughout. Box up any storage items and stack the boxes safely along one wall. One, it will make moving easier for you and will show off the garage area better.
The goal is to that magazine type look. Great presentation in a home for sale can really pay off big in the long run. Professional home stagers such as Anita at A1A Home Staging can add a lot of value throuh use of their services.