Have you decided to trade in the responsibilities of homeownership for the amenity rich and maintenance-free lifestyle of Independent Living? If so, there is likely one task that will need to be taken care of – selling your home.
Although at times it might seem daunting, there are steps you can take to simplify the process and ameliorate a few of the headaches. Following these suggestions can help you organize your move, make the sale and start you on the way to your new life.
10 tips to get your home ready to sell
Although people sometimes consider taking on the responsibility of selling their home themselves, most professionals would advise against it. The value the right realtor brings isn’t easily replaced, unless the homeowner has this experience as well. Setting the best asking price, qualifying the right prospects and arranging for showings can make a big difference in how quickly your home might go under contract and close.
No one wants to leave money on the table but be objective when pricing your home. If it’s overpriced, you might lose potential buyers before they can walk in the door. Most people have a price range in mind when they’re house shopping and have done their real estate homework. An overpriced home will usually stay on the market longer. And if you eventually drop the price, prospects may wonder if there’s something wrong with the house.
Some homeowners will arrange for their own inspection before putting their house on the market so they’re aware of any unknown problems that may arise. If there are needed repairs, you may choose to fix everything up front or factor in the repair costs in your list price. Others will offer the buyer the cost of repairs or replacement, such as for carpeting. If you wait for the buyer’s inspection, you may be faced with an unknown and unplanned expense.
Get your realtor’s opinion first but most advice is not to undergo a remodel to sell your home. Money spent on major renovations is rarely realized in the sale. However, take a good look at your kitchen and bathrooms. If they are dating your house, see if there are more affordable ways to update. Consider changing out your cabinet handles and pulls, towel racks and faucets. A fresh modern color of paint can also do wonders.
Common advice is to get rid of the clutter first. Although everything in your home may have great meaning to you, it can get in the way of a potential buyer seeing the home as theirs. Less is more when it comes to furnishings and accessories. And most realtors recommend removing personal photographs. The goal is to create a space where the prospect can easily imagine their family living there.
Many realtors recommend having your home staged. These professionals are trained to walk through your front door with the eyes of a potential buyer. It’s very hard for the seller to see their own home in this way. Placing furniture in the most pleasing arrangement or bringing in color where it’s needed can make a big difference. Think of a model home. Even though in reality no one may actually live that way, the right staging can make people wish they did.
You’ll likely need to downsize before moving into your new home. This is a great opportunity to let go of accumulations that have lost their meaning or purpose. This is also a good time to get rid of duplicates, such as the three sets of dishes or the dining room or kitchen table. Ask for the floorplan of your new home so you can decide which furniture you’ll want to take. Some sellers let potential buyers know they’re willing to negotiate a price on any furniture that remains.
The old saying about first impressions is true, especially when selling your home. Take some time and imagine what prospects will see as they first pull up curbside. Make a list, with your realtor’s help. Make separate notes for the exterior of the home and the landscaping. Consider a new entry door, fresh paint or a welcoming planter of colorful flowers. If your yard needs a little sprucing up, consider planting bushes and keep the grass mowed or the sidewalks shoveled if there’s snow.
The right photos of your home can make a huge difference. Remember, people will see your home digitally first. Today’s real estate market typically begins online with an internet search. You don’t want your home eliminated from a prospect’s consideration without being seen in person. Ask your realtor if they will have professional photos taken. The right angles and lighting will help show off the best features of your home.
Selling a home is a big task but it’s the first step in realizing the life you deserve and have looked forward to. Give yourself enough time so you’re not rushing the process. And start out organized and with the right realtor. You may be surprised at how smoothly things will go. But if you do get tired, remember why you’re moving. Image your new lifestyle. It’s a great motivator.
We look forward to having you join us at Westminster at Lake Ridge. You’ll find a relaxing yet fulfilling life waiting for you here. With almost unlimited choices of activities, amenities and opportunities to socialize, we think you’ll be glad you chose our community for your new home.
Call (703)794-4631 if you have any questions or would like to schedule a personalized tour today.