Selling a home has never been called “easy,” especially in a competitive market. According to realtor.com, there are over 8,200 homes for sale just in the Ft. Lauderdale area.
With all that competition, how do you make your home stand out? It’s all about knowing how to prep your home and make it attractive to buyers.
Not sure where to start? Our real estate pros have some tips get your house sale-ready.
How to Prep Your Home for Sale
You may love your home and the memories you’ve built, but buyers see it at face value. To raise that value, try on these tips for size.
Start by Consulting a Real Estate Agent
There’s no set list of features every home must have to catch a buyer’s eye. The desirable traits will vary from neighborhood to neighborhood as well.
The last thing you want to do is invest a weekend in rehabbing your home, then find out none of it helped. That’s why your first call should be to a real estate agent.
Have the agent come to your home and help you figure out what you need to do to be ready to sell.
You might think red walls give your home character and make it fit your personality. That may be true, but you’re taking a big gamble that it will fit a buyer’s taste as well. It makes it harder to find home buyers because they can’t picture themselves in your home.
Instead, swap out any unique flavors in your home with warm, inviting neutrals. It makes the house look like more of a blank slate, and buyers can picture themselves making it their own.
Declutter in a Major Way
Arguably the most effective way to make your home more attractive to buyers is to knock out the clutter. The fewer items you have, the larger your home will look.
You don’t just want to remove most of your knick-knacks and decorative items, but even furniture as well.
Remember, just because an item isn’t in an area of your home where you would entertain doesn’t mean buyers won’t see it. They’ll be touring your garage, basement, and unused closets as well.
For this reason, many sellers find that it’s well worth their investment to rent a storage facility for a few months. As a bonus, half of your packing is already done by the time your sale goes through.
Professional Carpet Cleaning and Hard Floor Waxing or Shining
Having a clean and fresh flooring instantly makes your home feel cleaner. There may also be long-term odors stuck in your carpets that you don’t notice because you’re around them every day, but they’ll turn buyers away.
Before your first showing, have your carpets professionally cleaned. Depending on the types of hard floors you have, it may be a good idea to have them waxed or shined as well.
Find a Place to Take Your Pets During Showings
Did you know that 3 in 10 people in the US are allergic to household pets? If your home is full of pet dander, you’re instantly making 30% of your buyers uncomfortable. That doesn’t include the people who have a phobia of dogs or cats.
Think of places you can take your pets when showings come up, like a nearby dog park. If you are at work for the day when the showings occur, find a friend or family member who can petsit or book a spot at a local pet boarding facility.
Up Your Curb Appeal
You put plenty of time into your appearance before you meet someone you want to impress. Your home needs to make a great first impression in the same way.
Step outside and take an objective look at the outside of your home. If it’s time to refresh your landscaping, now is the time. Repainting your exterior can be expensive, but there’s a good chance it’ll pay off.
Have you ever tried to have a conversation with someone who was wearing sunglasses? It feels like there’s a barrier to connection because you can’t see his/her eyes.
The same thing happens when buyers can’t instantly see your front door. If there’s tree overgrowth or too much decor, buyers have a difficult time connecting to the home. Now is the time to clear the way.
Get a Property Valuation
This might not affect how your home appears to buyers, but it will definitely affect the selling process. A property valuation tells you how much your home is worth, which will educate your asking price.
Many buyers won’t even look at a home if it is priced at a certain amount above or below their budget. If you make an error with your asking price, you’ll alienate potential buyers.
Finish Any Undone Projects
Plenty of homeowners have an unfinished room or a half-built deck. When they want to sell their home, they often say, “That should be an asset because the buyer can make their own finishing choices.”
Sorry, but unfortunately that’s not the effect a work-in-progress has. It projects an overall cluttered and cheap image, and it just looks like work that a buyer doesn’t want to do.
Protect Your Valuables and Personal Items
Showing your home can feel like an invasion of sorts. Even though you’ve invited the buyers in and you want them there, they’re still going through every area of your home.
Put your mind at ease by moving your valuables and anything that shares your personal information in a more secure location. Try storing it at the home of a trusted friend or family member.
Getting the Highest Value for Your Home
Every seller wants to get as much money for their treasured home as they can, but this is easier said than done. It takes work and preparation to get your house show-ready and dedication to keep it that way. The tips above can guide you about how to prep your home for a faster, more lucrative sale.
If you’re ready to sell your home, contact our real estate professionals.