Seller Secret # 10: Pricing it right
Find out what your Franklin NC home is worth, then shave 10 to 25 percent off the price. You'll be stampeded by buyers with multiple bids — even in the worst markets — and they'll bid up the price over what it's worth. It takes real courage and most sellers just don't want to risk it, but it's the single best strategy to sell a home in today's market.
Seller Secret #9: Half-empty closets
Storage is something every buyer is looking for and can never have enough of. Take half the stuff out of your closets then neatly organize what's left in there. Buyers will snoop, so be sure to keep all your closets and cabinets clean and tidy.
Seller Secret #8: Light it up
Maximize the light in your home. After location, good light is the one thing that every buyer cites that they want in a home. Take down the drapes, clean the windows, change the lampshades, increase the wattage of your light bulbs and cut the bushes outside to let in sunshine. Do what you have to do make your Franklin NC house bright and cheery – it will make it more sellable.
Seller Secret #7: Play the agent field
A secret sale killer is hiring the wrong broker. Make sure you have a broker who is totally informed. They must constantly monitor the multiple listing service (MLS), know what properties are going on the market and know the comps in your neighborhood. Find a broker who embraces technology – a tech-savvy one has many tools to get your house sold. The Realtor should be your partner in this process.
Seller Secret #6: Conceal the critters
You might think a cuddly dog would warm the hearts of potential buyers, but you'd be wrong. Not everybody is a dog- or cat-lover. Franklin NC buyers don't want to walk in your home and see a bowl full of dog food, smell the kitty litter box or have tufts of pet hair stuck to their clothes. It will give buyers the impression that your house is not clean. If you're planning an open house, send the critters to a pet hotel for the day. We have dogs, but as much as I love them, I don't want to smell them in the houses we have for sale or are showing.
Seller Secret #5: Don't over-upgrade
Quick fixes before selling always pays off. Mammoth makeovers, not so much. You probably won't get your money back if you do a huge improvement project before you put your house on the market. Instead, do updates that will pay off and get you top dollar. Get a new fresh coat of paint on the walls. Clean the curtains or go buy some inexpensive new ones. Replace door handles, cabinet hardware, make sure closet doors are on track, fix leaky faucets and clean the grout.
Seller Secret #4: Take the home out of your house
One of the most important things to do when selling your house is to de-personalize it. The more personal stuff in your home, the less potential buyers can imagine themselves living there. Get rid of a third of your stuff – put it in storage. This includes family photos, memorabilia collections and personal keepsakes. Consider hiring a home stager to maximize the full potential of your home. Staging simply means arranging your furniture to best showcase the floor plan and maximize the use of space. You want to make your property able to become their home - not yours. Remember, you have decided to sell and move - so pack it up and store it somewhere. After all, you are moving.
Seller Secret #3: The kitchen comes first
You're not actually selling your house, you're selling your kitchen – that's how important it is. The benefits of remodeling your kitchen are endless, and the best part of it is that you'll probably get 85% of your money back. It may be a few thousand dollars to replace countertops where a buyer may knock $10,000 off the asking price if your kitchen looks dated. The fastest, most inexpensive kitchen updates include painting and new cabinet hardware. Use a neutral-color paint so you can present buyers with a blank canvas where they can start envisioning their own style. If you have a little money to spend, buy one fancy stainless steel appliance. Why one? Because when people see one high-end appliance they think all the rest are expensive too and it updates the kitchen.
Seller Secret #2: Always be ready to show
Your home needs to be "show-ready" at all times – you never know when your buyer is going to walk through the door. You have to be available whenever they want to come see the place and it has to be in tip-top shape. Don't leave dishes in the sink, keep the dishwasher cleaned out, the bathrooms sparkling and make sure there are no dust bunnies in the corners. It's a little inconvenient, but it will get your house sold.
Seller Secret #1: The first impression is the only impression
No matter how good the interior of your house looks, buyers have already judged your home before they walk through the door. You never have a second chance to make a first impression. It's important to make people feel warm, welcome and safe as they approach the house. Spruce up your home's exterior with inexpensive shrubs and brightly colored flowers. You can typically get a 100-percent return on the money you put into your home's curb appeal. Entryways are also important. You use it as a utility space for your coat and keys. But, when you're selling, make it welcoming by putting in a small bench, a vase of fresh-cut flowers.
As a home seller, your job is to try to make your home be all things to all people. Let's explore the most common things buyers dislike about listings they see. In the process, you'll get equipped to sidestep those issues and, in large part, hater-proof your own home.
Complaint #1: Odors. If you are a seller and you know that someone has been habitually smoking in your home or that you have had a "challenge," let's say, with pet accidents, do not ignore the problem. And do not think that because you had the carpet shampooed or the drapes cleaned, or because YOU can't smell anything, that the problem is gone. The fact is that the human sense of smell very quickly gets used to smells that it lives with or is surrounded with on a regular basis. So it's critical to get your agent, stager or even your friends and family members - who don't live with you and love you enough to be honest! - to help you detect bad smells and odors, and make sure they are eradicated by any means necessary, before you place your home on the market.
Complaint #2: Glaringly extreme overpricing. There's the kind of overpricing that makes a buyer say, "Hmmm - seems a bit high. Let's go see it, but we might have to offer a little less than the asking price if we like it." Then there's the kind of overpricing that makes buyer say "I'll wait until a price reduction" or worse, hold their sides from laughing.
You want your home to stand out as a property that is not dirt cheap, but does present a good value for the money - that's what motivates buyers to get out of their chairs and into the property for a viewing.
Here's how to hater-proof your home's listing against this issue: fixate on the comps. Smart sellers deactivate their emotional attachment and very human tendency to overvalue their precious homes by poring over the sales prices (not list prices) of similar, nearby homes that have recently sold. Your agent will be happy to help you walk through this data and will almost certainly recommend a list price, but ultimately you make the decision about the price point to list your home at.
Also, consider using your broker's first Open House as an additional hater-proof measure: if the agents overwhelmingly comment that they think the home is significantly overpriced, listen.
Complaint #3: Dirt and messes. Possibly the single largest source of complaints I've ever heard are the dirt, messes, piles and personal belongings that buyers find so distracting, when they walk into a home for a viewing or Open House. What is underestimated is how often even savvy home buyers are distracted by relatively clean homes that just have a few outstanding messes, like dirty dishes in the sink, piles of papers, mail, books or clothes lying out in plain view.
Will one or two such items ruin the sale of your home? Perhaps not. But a few of them (or more) can certainly distract a buyer enough that they fixate on your stuff and, in the process, fail to see what is so great about your property.
Complaint #4: Lots of little malfunctions. All of us tend to think our homes are in fantastic condition. After all, you have the furnace maintained regularly, you've got granite and dual paned windows - maybe you even had the floors refinished or the walls painted in preparation for putting your place on the market.
That's all fantastic - all the non-cosmetic work you've done to maintain and improve your home should be trumpeted in your marketing materials, and the cosmetic items will (or should) speak for themselves. But here's the thing: buyers who visit your home won't be running your dishwasher or testing the furnace (at least not until inspections). What they will do - almost unconsciously - is:
• flick light and fan switches
• open or close window coverings, closet, room and entry doors,
• open and close drawers, cupboards, gates and fences and
• hold the handrails as they walk up and down the stairs.
They will hear leaky faucets and point out water spots from long-ago repaired leaks, and they will notice uneven exterior tiles, paths and walkways. And even though these items might be vastly less expensive to fix than the roof or sewer line you had replaced, they are much more visible and noticeable to a buyer. And when they notice a bunch of these sorts of things in a single property, they can jump to the conclusion that the whole place is unmaintained.