Did you ever wonder why new home builders create a model home? They do this because most buyers, even the best of them, have a hard time imagining their stuff in the home. But they also do this because it helps them get premium prices for their homes. They do this by spending thousands of dollars furnishing these homes with built-ins, stylish furniture and ambient lighting to create that certain “lived-in” look of someone who makes twice as much as most people and has a small army to do the cleaning. So when you go to sell your home, you must put your best face out there and create that model home look. By using some of the techniques which the trade calls “staging” you can set yourself apart from other homes on the market, as well as get more money.
Color: In the corporate relocation industry, it’s often called “neutralization” and it entails removing stripes, flowers and striking colors on your walls with subtle designer colors, mostly in the tan and cream families. Even if you are on a budget, doing this in key rooms such as the entry, living/kitchen, main bathroom and master bedroom are good ideas.
Smells: Pets are attributed by many, to be the cause of most odors and if you have one you will have to work extra hard to freshen up the interior. The thought of animal smells that can’t be removed is overwhelming to most buyers. There are even some buyers who refuse to purchase a house that has had a pet living in the home. Get your carpets deep cleaned or possibly replaced. Wood floors can be refinished relatively inexpensively and can really give you a good bang for your buck. And even if you don’t own a pet, a good deep cleaning is still one of the best ideas to get you home in “show condition.” More tips include: layoff cooking really fragrant meals while listing your home and use subtle air fresheners and candles, too much can suggest you have something to hide.
Clutter: Since you are planning to move, start packing before you list your house. You can put your stuff in neatly stacked and organized boxes or bins in your basement or garage. Also, a common thing that people are doing now is putting these in small offsite storage areas if you don’t have the space. What should you put in these boxes? Start with the personalized items and clothing you can do without for a few months. Next, try to remove at least one piece of furniture per room and make as much room as possible. A light, bright, airy uncluttered environment will give the impression of more space. Some things you’ll probably never hear from a buyer: “I wish that living room was much smaller” or “that closet just had too much room for me.”
These are just a few key steps in making your home a showcase for the buyers out there. Your assigned real estate agent can look at your specific home and make suggestions to create the right look to put your home first in buyers’ minds. It’s important to start working with an agent as soon as possible prior to listing. Getting your “punch list” done before pictures and first showings can make a big impact towards getting an offer on your property and put more money back in your pocket or the next home.