Monday, May 4, 2009

Ways to sell your home faster

Every seller out there in this down market would like to know the secrets to selling their home faster. Do your homework and hard work up front to make sure your home sells fast. Research as shown by doing these top 10 steps you will accomplish a sold sign faster!

1. Finish the “honey do” list. Just about every homeowner has a string of little repairs that never quite get done. Now’s the time. Fix the screens, oil the squeak, patch the cracks, paint the trim and neutralize the home. Stuff that shouts out “Deferred maintenance!” to every potential buyer.

Cost = A few bucks if you’re handy, a couple of hundred if you hire someone who is.

2. Get inspected. A pre-sale inspection can help in a couple of different ways. Professional inspections can identify problems that could potentially kill a sale. If there are no major problems the inspection can prove that fact to skittish buyers. Having this on a counter during an open house or showing show the buyers that you have nothing to hide and gives them a piece of mind.

Cost = Around $400

3. Pack up the clutter. Clutter will destroy your equity. Too much stuff makes rooms look smaller and focuses buyers’ attention on your possessions rather than the home you’re tying to sell. That’s why many professional stagers recommend removing as much as a third of your things to better show off rooms and closets. You will have to pack anyways so this saves time and headaches for you later.

Cost = $150 to $300 a month for three months storage

4. Depersonalize and neutralize. The first items that should go in those packing boxes: family photos, collections and just about anything else that says “you”. Also repaint walls or replace carpets to neutral shades. This will give buyers a lank canvas to they can imagine their furniture and other belongings in your home.

Cost = $10 and up for paint; $500 and up for carpet

5. Clean, Clean, Clean. Make sure that everything is spotless, that you can eat off of the kitchen floors, and that the bathrooms are sparkling. If you have to do the white glove test. Make sure the windows are clean and baseboards have no dust. Buyers will be looking at all of this and do not want to clean your mess up! Make sure the home smells clean. If you have pets and they have had accidents you will have to replace the affected carpet and padding and have the underlying floor sealed. If your not sure how your place smells call a tactful friend to take a few whiffs and tell you the honest truth!

Cost= $10 or so in cleaning products, if you do it yourself; $75 and up if you hire help.

6. Stage the Rooms. Stand in the doorway to find each rooms focal point, and use furniture placement to highlight that. The back of your sofa shouldn’t block the view of the fireplace, and the dining room table shouldn’t be sharing space with a treadmill. The beds should be the focal point in all rooms. Any piece of furniture making a room look crowded or out of place should be removed. It should look like a model home!

Cost= Nothing if you do it your self, $500 and up to have a professional home stager.

7. Tend to the floors. Keeping them spotless won’t help if they’re dated, worn or stained. You shouldn’t spend a fortune installing hardwood or tile, though, since you’re unlikely to recoup the cost. Look for compromise that can improve the home’s appearance without busting your wallet. Carpets should be steam cleaned to see if they’re salvageable. If not , you may be able to reduce the costs of replacement by offering to do some of the work, such as removing the old carpet when leaving or splitting the costs to the new buyer. Also remove rugs. Little rugs add tot he visual clutter.

Cost = $75 and up

8. Curb appeal. Most people start their home search on the Internet. The first picture they see if the front exterior of the home. If your home doesn’t WOW them, they might never call for a showing. Your front landscaping needs to be in perfect condition. That is their first impression, you’ll need to trim back the hedges and plant flowers. Make sure the lawn is mowed at all times and that no weeds are present. If you have a black top driveway and it needs resealed, do so, it makes the home look new! Research shows by painting the front door a red will attract showings and buyers!!

Cost = $300 to $500 for landscaping, more if you need to fix crack walkways or driveways.

9. Pick the best realtor. Working with a realtor to sell your home is very important. They use crucial marketing techniques to sell your home. Make sure that the realtor you decide to use can really sell. That means somebody who knows your neighborhood intimately and who’s enthusiastic about your home. hat also means someone other agents want to work with and is trustworthy.

Cost = 3% to 6% of the sale price of your home.

10. Set the right price. A seller may think they will test the market with a high price tag, assuming that buyers will make an offer if they are interested, but buyers may assume they are unreasonable and move on. Also you may have your home listed at $140,000 (for an example), but would settle for $132,000. There may be 10 buyers that are pre approved at $135,000 that wouldn’t even look because it wasn’t listed in their price range. Buyer who are actively looking, want a fair priced home. I believe they will buy a home that they feel is a fair value and within their price range. Your goal should be a fair price or something reasonable to the price of the other homes in your area.