#3 PROPERTY PREPARATION
It's time to get your house into "showing and selling" condition. Most of us don't keep our homes in the condition it would need to be in to sell. Over the years those boxes in the corner of the garage just seem to multiply on their own. Things have broken that we just never get around to fixing and some things have just worn out. We just accept the fact that they will always be this way. It is this frame of mind that you have to break out of in order to get your house ready to show. How your house looks will have an immense impact on how quickly it sells and whether or not you get full market value for it.
First impressions are very important and you only get to make one. Approach your property from the buyer's standpoint. What needs to be changed to make a good first impression? This may mean that all you do is prune the trees and shrubs. On the other hand, it may mean that you completely repaint the house, inside and out. Do a "curb to door" check. Give the potential buyers a clear path to enter the home. The fewer obstacles between the buyer and the true appeal of your house the better. Keep in mind that over time we become accustomed to our surroundings. What's normal for you may be detrimental to the buyer.
Make your house look as spacious as possible. Organize your closets and kitchen cabinets, and if you have things stored in the attic or basement, make sure they are presentable. If you are showing during the day, pull back your curtains and drapes to show how bright and cheery your home is. If you are showing at night, turn on all of the lights to create a warm and welcoming environment for the prospective buyers.
A house that is marked with your personality and style may be harder to sell. You might even consider such things as removing obvious clues to your political affiliation and tucking away any biased literature that may be visible. This will reduce distractions and help the buyers to visualize the home as their own.
Your agent can save you time and money by providing an objective and expert opinion on what needs to be changed or improved. They know what the buyers are looking for because they are in the marketplace everyday. They will perform an analysis of the entire property and, taking into account the state of the market in which you are selling your house, point you to the changes that need to be made in order to sell it for the most amount of money and as quickly as possible.
10 Steps to Selling Your House
1- Needs Analysis
2- Pricing Strategy
3- Property Preparation
4- Marketing Strategy
5- Receiving an Offer
6- Negotiating to Sell
8- Pre-close Preparation