Home selling advice

Selling your house? Here are some tips to attract buyers, attract attention and get the most money possible out of your house. The average home buyers make their decision on purchasing a home within the first 7 minutes of being in the house. With that being said, curb appeal and cleanliness is everything. You could have the perfect house but if potential buyers are distracted by clutter, poorly maintained, dirt and grime, etc. then you will probably be sitting on the house for a long time. Contrary to what some people think, an empty house is not the best way to sell a property. A properly staged house will generate more interest than an empty house. Properly staging a house demonstrates the functionality of each room but also leaves room for some imagination so the potential buyer can picture how they would live in the house.

The first step to staging a house is a thorough cleaning. Scrub the house from top to bottom. Also make any repairs that are needed. Paint areas that need paint and pick appropriate colors. Sometimes our tastes are not all the same so it might be helpful to talk to the people at the local paint store on colors and what is popular currently. Furnish the house but be careful not to over clutter. Clutter makes rooms look smaller than they are and also gives a “messy” appearance. Keep it simple but make it inviting. Hang some art on the walls but don’t over do it. Stick with art and not personal items like family pictures, etc. Stage extra rooms with one purpose. Over cluttering a room to show how it can be used for multiple purposes can confuse buyers. If you have an extra room stage it with one purpose such as a home office, a game room, a rec room, etc. Don’t try to combine more than one purpose.

Depending on your staging budget, there are many options. For example, in a small bathroom you can eliminate the vanity and use a pedestal sink instead. This will add style yet make the room look more spacious. Get rid of brass/gold hardware on doors, cabinets, drawers, faucets, etc. Go with something more modern like brushed aluminum. Simple things like painting rusty fireplace screens will go along way for appearance. Fireplace bricks can be painted or polished to modernize their appearance.

If your budget allows, make a piece of your staging wall art money. Fill a nice picture frame with $2000 or so in $100 bills. Have the realtor express to all potential buyers that “artwork” comes with the house. You would be amazed at what this piece of art work can do for making offers. This has been proven to work by many.

A lot of time can be spent in the kitchen and it will be well worth it. Kitchens are one of the most expensive rooms to renovate and also are one of the most picked apart rooms by potential buyers. Outdated cabinets can be scuffed up with steel wool and re-stained for a new look. Add some modern hardware and the cabinets will have an up to date look. Outdated laminate countertops can be given a granite look with a counter top refinishing kit such as Giani Granite Paint for Counter tops. Dishwashers can be refaced with a stainless steel stick on covering which will modernize its appearance. Replace out dated faucets with more modern equipment. Use a round table in your eat in kitchen or dining room. A round table will give the illusion of more space in that room.

Master bedrooms need to appeal to men and women. Paint the walls a neutral color and eliminate items that are too gender specific. Choose a bedding that matches the paint and add some throw pillows to the bed that match as well. If everyone that tours the house wants to crawl in the bed, you’ve done good.

Floors. If you have pet stained or odor carpet, get rid of it. Either replace with more carpeting or chose vinyl tiles or a laminate flooring that will give that hardwood look yet be durable and more resistant to scratching than hardwood.

Storage space sells. De-clutter and modernize closets. Add shelving units, racking systems and/or shoe racks.

Get a home inspection. Show potential buyers you have gone that extra step to ensure your property is safe and solid. This will give you an advantage over other homes in your price range and area. This will also eliminate any negotiating that takes place after a home inspection since most sales are “contingent on a home inspection”. Eliminate that variable right away. A home that is pre inspected also gives the potential buyers piece of mind knowing that the property owner has gone the extra mile to get a home inspection. This also presents itself as a savings to the buyer because now the buyer will not have to pay for an inspection. Home inspections are relatively cheap but you would be surprised at how much of a difference a few hundred dollars can make.