Even though selling a home has sometimes been termed "a numbers game" in the sense that you are likely to receive an offer if you (or your real estate agent) can generate enough traffic, there are tried and true methods to make your property shine, to keep time on market to a minimum, and to generate the best possible price, regardless of if you're in a hot market like Southeast Calgary or elsewhere. These tips include positive marketing steps, acknowledging that a home sale depends in part on the merchandising expertise of the seller as much as on the "product."
Take advantage of every opportunity to help your home outshine the competition when selling your home. Here are 5 great ways to do it:
Keep Your Home Clean and Bright
Homes that are well kept, impeccably clean inside and out, and that boast attractive landscaping will always attract positive attention from potential buyers, whether they first view the listing on line or by driving through a neighbourhood. Once inside, visitors will want to look outside through sparkling windows. Assure that all interior surfaces, including fan blades and flooring, will pass a "white glove" test. Straighten closets, sweep the garage floor, and never leave pet dishes on the floor, or children's toys on the sofa.
Stage Your Home
It's always good advice to sort through your belongings before you plan a move, but home staging goes beyond decluttering and depersonalizing. A professional staging consultation will help you identify both the good points and the problem areas in your home. Staging can accentuate positive architectural features, enhance traffic flow, emphasize views and sight lines, create the illusion of more space and volume, and minimize potential buyer objections.
In short, a little time and money spent prior to listing will pay big benefits in terms of a faster offer and a higher price.
Boost Home Curb Appeal
Mow the lawn, trim the trees and shrubbery, plant flowers in pots by the front door. Add a small bench or a pair of chairs if there is room. Enhance the pathway from the street with solar lighting, update garage lights with motion-activated fixtures and install new entry lighting that complements the style of your home. Replace your house numbers and mailbox, as well as the entry lock, with stylish new models.
Clean roof gutters and repair or repaint downspouts if necessary. Make sure that the house is appealing from all directions, and that window shutters are clean and in good repair. Repaint or touch up exterior trim, and ensure that paving and sidewalks are clear and without cracks or impediments
Get Professional Photographs
Up to 90 percent of buyers first view a home listing online. You have only a fraction of a second to make a great first impression: Don't waste it. A potential buyer will not schedule a walkthrough if they don't first click their mouse for more information.
On the other hand, if you have superb photographs, ensure that you maintain your home to the same standard, from the front entry to the backyard. Selling a home requires ongoing commitment and vigilance. You are never sure exactly when that buyer will arrive, so keep your home in prime ready condition at all times.
Offering Perks For Buyers to Sell a Home in a Competitive Market
If there are many similar homes competing for buyers' attention, one thing that home sellers can do is offer perks to sweeten the deal. If there are two similarly priced homes for sale, but one comes with a whole home warranty, for instance, this could be what it takes to seal the deal.
Financing part of the closing costs is one perk that buyers will find attractive. Closing costs can add thousands of dollars to the cost of a home, and many buyers will feel a pinch parting with that extra cash at a time when all of the other expenses associated with being a new homeowner pop up. Picking up part of the bill can make one home a more attractive option than another.
Buying a home with existing appliances is convenient, but it can also involve some worry for homebuyers. What if the appliances will need replacement soon? A home warranty provides peace of mind in this regard. If appliances need to be replaced, the warranty can defray the cost.
Finally, Price Your Home Competitively
In a competitive market, it may be tempting to hold out for the highest possible price. But buyers, quite naturally, are also looking for good deals. Weigh the financial rewards of a quick sale against the potential costs of having your house on the market longer, and the need for a possible price reduction.
Pay attention to the listing prices of comparable local properties, and assess your home's value honestly rather than emotionally; seek the advice of a real estate professional familiar with your local market, and price the home fairly. You may be surprised at how quickly it will sell.