Sellers - today we’re talking about what you can do to your home to get the most bang for your buck as you prepare it for the market.
Let’s get right to it…
First, we’re going to assume that your systems like the roof, heating, electric, windows, siding, etcetera are all in working order.
If they’re not, when we sit down together, we’ll go over which, if any, would be worth investing in repairing before you hit the market.
What you can get for your home is going to be determined by both what a buyer is willing to pay for it - and in most cases - what the bank is willing to lend that buyer to purchase it which is typically determined by the appraisal.
We’re not going to focus so much on the systems, location, and comparable properties sold that appraisers are looking at - but rather, we’re going to take a quick look at what is commonly referred to as “The 3 P’s and 2 F’s”.
These 5 things are the least expensive, most impactful things that you can do to make buyers feel at home when touring your property.
Let’s take a closer look…
Our primary goal with curbside appeal is to make the buyer think “oh that’s cute”… not “wow - that’s going to be a lot of work”. Even if the home is perfect on the inside - when most folks see weeds in the flower beds, untrimmed hedges, and uncut grass their first thought is “wow, this is a lot of work”. Don’t under estimate the impact that a pair of gloves, some hedge trimmers, and a little time can make on your bottom line.
If you have a little bit of money to spend, I also recommend 1 or 2 pots with annuals on the front porch. $50 at Home Depot or Fred Meyer will be more than sufficient for what you need. That little pop of color adds a lot.
Again, we’re not talking about remodeling the entire interior or repainting every surface - but just some touch ups. If you don’t have any leftover paint from the last time it was painted, chip off a piece of paint from an out-of-the-way area, take it to Home Depot, have them match the paint color, and use that to do your touch ups around the house. I recommend white trim and light gray walls. Remember, buyers don’t care what your favorite color is - you want them to envision their favorite color on your walls.
Another pro tip - if your wooden cabinets are looking a little weathered, there’s a quick and pretty inexpensive solution! Paint them white and update the knobs to the cheapest fixtures you can find. Clean, working, and matching is better than weathered.
Fast and simple - you want buyers to imagine their family pictures on the wall, mantle, and bedside table. From picture day on, let’s box up those family photos and put them in the garage or closet. Same goes for trophies, awards, trinkets, and the like. Think mirrors, candles, and art.
Less is more. Way less is way more. Buyers want to know that there is room to put their things in the home. If a home is cluttered with end tables, hutches, oversized couches, and decor, it’s very challenging to do so. I recommend putting those extra couches, chairs, hutches, ottomans, coffee tables, decorations, and shelving out of site either in the garage, a storage unit, or a friend or family’s garage while your home is on the market.
If you have the money, a $100-200 investment in matching door knobs, matching ceiling lights, matching light switches and faceplates, and consistent kitchen and bathroom hardware has a huge impact on the subconsciousness of the buyer. In almost all cases, we're not talking about the most expensive, high-end versions - but rather, the least expensive options. It’s not the material as much as the consistency and “fresh” feel.
Regardless of wether your home is a $250,000 first-time-home buyer / light fixer or a $750,000 inner-east-side charmer, less than $500 of an investment and the 2-3 weekends spent on these items is going to have a very real impact on how much buyers feel your home is worth.
If you’d like a more customized set of recommendations or if you’re ready to get the listing process started, give me a call at 503.701.7023. Otherwise - to see your home’s value or to get a head start on finding your next property, there is a tool in the side column of this website. It’s a free and easy to use resource that should help.
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