Your Castles Unlimited Realtor is an expert in marketing homes in the Greater Boston area. But your role in the final results is just as important: to make your home as attractive as possible to potential buyers.
Remember that first impressions count. You should do everything you can to make that first impression a positive one. People who consider buying your house will be as critical as you are in searching for a new home.
Be sure to be as flexible as possible. Insisting that your home be shown only when convenient for you may rid you of potential buyers. You never know if that last minute, inconvinient showing will bring in the buyers who make an offer on your home.
Take an inspection tour of your home, observing it as a potential buyer would. Take note of any minor repairs and painting that need to be done.
Here are some tips which have proven valuable to homeowners in preparing their homes for showing:
Since the exterior of your home will be the first thing a prospective buyer sees, it is very important to create a good first impression. Many sales are already closed before the buyer walks inside, based just on the outside appeal of the home. Here are some enhancements you can make to the exterior of your home:
- Keep the lawn trimmed and edged. Weed and cultivate flower gardens.
- Trim shrubs and eliminate dead trees or branches. Pick up any debris, toys and lawn equipment.
- Repair any fences or gates. Give them a fresh coat of paint, if necessary.
- Are the exterior walls painted, the roof in good repair, as well as gutters and down-spouts?
- Wash down driveways and sidewalks. Check them for cracking and crumbling.
- Replace any cracked windows and torn screens.
- The entrance should be clean and in good repair. The doorbell and front light must be in working condition.
- Park extra cars down the street.
- Remove any worn out or rusted patio furniture.
- Keep any pets you have, out of the way.
Start with a full housecleaning from top to bottom. Don’t let dirt and clutter obscure your home’s good points. Place unused and unnecessary items in storage areas and closets. Eliminating clutter will give your home a more spacious look.
- Walls should be clean and free of smudges, fingerprints and dents. Consider a fresh coat of paint if a good washing doesn’t do the trick. Inspect woodwork and wall-paper for problem areas.
- Arrange furniture to make each room appear more spacious and attractive. If a piece of furniture is badly worn, store it in the attic or at your neighbors.
- Wash windows and sills until sparkling clean. Curtains and drapes should be freshly laundered.
- Clean and vacuum rugs and carpets. Floors should be waxed.
- Repair loose doorknobs, sticking doors and windows, and warped drawers.
- Fix leaky faucets and eliminate discoloration in sinks.
- Tighten stair banisters, and be sure steps are safe.
- Light fixtures should be in good repair. Replace discolored or cracked switch plates.
- Clean out closets to display their size and be sure clothes are hung neatly and shoes are tidily arranged.
- Bathrooms should be sparkling clean. Repair caulking in tubs and showers.
- Bedrooms should be neat and attractive (beds made, clothes off floor etc).
- Clean and organize the basement, attic and garage.
- Clear away all dishes, toasters, blenders etc. from kitchen counters in order to make the room feel more spacious.
- Put fresh flowers or plants throughout the house to create a feeling of warmth.
- Get rid of all offensive odors (pet odor, food, cigarette smoke etc).
Don’t Over Improve
Many families tend to learn to live with a broken doorknob and a cracked window. All of these little things should be fixed because no prospective buyer wants to do the things you have let stack up.
Use caution in planning major improvements that you think will enable you to get more for the house than you paid for it. Of course, an investment in a paint job where it’s obviously needed will be well worth the cost. The same is true with carpeting that is shabby enough to be a turn-off.
Most people out shopping for a house would rather plan their own major changes, and you are usually the wiser to sell them the potential at a price they can afford.
Showing the House
- The television and radio should be turned off. Let the salesperson and buyer talk, free of disturbances.
- Leave drapes open for light and airiness. If it’s evening, all lights should be turned on to give the rooms a larger appearance and a cheerful effect.
- Make sure that the temperature within your home is comfortable during the showings.
- Be courteous but don’t force conversation with the potential buyer. Let go of the emotion you have invested in your home. Using a business like manner will give you an edge over someone who remains emotionally attached to their property.
- Never apologize for the appearance of your home. After all, it has been lived in. Let the trained salesperson answer any objections.
- The salesperson knows the buyer’s requirements and can better emphasize the features of your home when you aren't present.
- Let your Castles Unlimited Realtor discuss price, terms, possession and other factors with the customer, as they are better qualified to bring negotiations to a favorable conclusion.
- Your Castles Unlimited Realtor is an experienced professional who will be able to view your home objectively and make suggestions that will improve the appearance of your home and its ability to sell.