Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Integrity

You walk into the sellers home for the first time, only to find a home that has never been updated, is quite dirty, has 40 year old appliances and carpet that is wearing through and smells of pet urine.  How do you deal with this?  Well, for sure you don't tell the seller that their home sucks.  But, it is your duty to them as prospective future clients to be gently honest with them.

Most often we can be gentle in our handling of our presentation to them when we ask for upgrades prior to putting the home on the market.

What I typically do is to complete a solid Comparative Market Analysis that includes one or two pages with suggestions of needed upgrades to obtain the highest value.  I offer to pay for an initial staging consultation once I have secured the listing.  During the staging consult the seller is asked to take copious notes regarding what should be done in a perfect world to make their home shine.  From new appliances to simple general cleaning, the stager and myself put it all out there for the Seller to see.  I come armed with lists of vendors I have worked with successfully in the past who can take most of the tasks off their shoulders.

We have the seller remove or re-arrange furniture, hang pictures in needed areas, clean carpets, do deep cleaning on the entire house, have new appliances installed, paint, put in new counters and so many other tasks.  The more the seller agrees to do,  the more likely the home is to sell at a premium price in todays market.

Once the seller has done all they can, I hire the services of a professional photographer who takes up to 100 photos for me to add to our MLS and to a number of websites to highlight this home with it's best foot forward. 

With these things done, we seem to always get showings, and I believe it is because of the combined efforts of the seller, stager, photographer and their Realtor.  It is, after all, a team effort to get a home sold.

I would love to hear your thoughts and professional "secrets" that serve you so well as you take care of you clients.  I am finding that there is a huge wealth of great agents on  Active Rain and would truly love to hear from as many of you as are willing to share. 


Posted by

Colin Call, GRI, ALHS, BrokerMore Than Just the Red Glasses

(541) 579-1615

4710 Village Plaza Loop, Eugene OR



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Coldwell Banker Camelot Realty
Coldwell Banker Camelot Realty - Mount Dora, FL
Homes for Sale Mount Dora Realtor


Those are great tips.

We've had a few people get a POD delivered to their home so they can remove clutter.

Jul 17, 2011 08:12 AM #1
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

Colin, well put - that can be a really sensitve topic eh?  You have a good solution - have you found most homeowners agree to stagers. I wish all did, but find that too many don't think it's necessary. Wish I could refuse listings at this point, but I can't quite yet.

By the way, love the red glasses, you wear and use them well.

Jul 17, 2011 08:31 AM #2
Jennifer Wyatt
Keller Williams - Kingsport, TN
"Don't make a move without me!"

Sometimes taking photographs of the house "as is" is very effective in helping people see their home for what it is without having to actually be blunt.  I also think taking them to look at the comps can be an effective tool in helping them get motivated to spiffy up.  Some people get so used to what is their home they become blind.  You have great ideas!


Jul 17, 2011 08:32 AM #3
Colin Call
RE/MAX Integrity - Eugene, OR
Principal Broker

Wow, Thanks for the comments.  Debb, while I am not successful in getting home owners to hire stagers to do a full blown staging event, I am able to get all to follow the advice of the stager I hire for the consultation.  I usually give them from 5-10 days to get their stuff done and then go back for the photo op.  I also sign most of the listings for  a higher commission and give the lions share to the buyers agent, effectively converting them into sellers agents.

Jul 17, 2011 08:47 AM #4
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Colin Call

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