Selling Your Home - Tips to Ready Your Property For Sale

Selling Your Home: Getting your house ready to sell? A few tips to help you navigate the current real estate market and get top dollar for your home sale.

Selling your home can be a monumental decision.  If you purchased your home five years ago or longer, then you have no doubt benefited from the huge increases in pricing we have experienced and may be thinking it's time to cash out on the equity that has built.

As we experience a slide in market activity, it is of utmost importance to be sure your home is going to show its best.  As listing inventories continue to rise, the competition is becoming ever more fierce, and whispers of a buyer's market is in the air.

Whether you choose to enlist the services of a licensed real estate professional, or you opt to go it alone, it is of major importance to have a current understanding of your individual market conditions.  One of the most important lessons to be learned in real estate investing, is that markets are local.  While the country may be experiencing a slip in sales, that doesn't necessarily mean it has hit your neighbourhood.  You do not want to act in haste and drastically under price your home based on a national news broadcast, but you do want to make sure you don't take the other option, and price yourself out of the market entirely.  Knowledge is power in many ways, and capitalizing on your real estate is no different.

Once you have educated yourself as to local trends in the housing market, the following steps below will help to ensure your home is on the top of the home buyers must see list.

  • Clean, Clean and clean again.  Purchasers looking to spend this kind of money, the largest investment in their lives, are going to want to spend it wisely.  A home that presents itself as clean and inviting is going to rate much higher than one that has last night's supper dishes still in the sink.  If you are serious about going on the market, it is important to realize that cleanliness really is next to godliness.  Get your spouse and your kids onboard as many hands make for lighter work.  Beds will need to be made, trash will have to be taken to the curb, cobwebs will have to disappear, floors will need mopping, ovens cleaned, refrigerators will need to shine.  Don't fool yourself by thinking that potential buyers are going to respect your privacy and not look in your cabinets and closets.  They will look, they will judge, and the overstuffed closet you thought would be ignored just may be reflected in their offer.
  • Don't Forget the Outside! Over and above the lawn mowing and snow shoveling, the same amount of care and maintenance must be applied to the outside of the home that has been to the inside.  If you are hoping to realize top dollar, then the toys have to be put away, the flower beds will need to be weeded, and pet messes will have to be seen too.  Cobwebs and spiders love corners of porches and veranda's, but what if the buyer suffers a fear of spiders? It may take a little extra time, but the results will be worth the effort.
  • Keep scents to a minimum.  In this day and age of environmental sensitivities, those expensive Moroccan scented candles are the last thing you want to be burning to set your ambiance.  Keep scents light, and steer clear of many of the chemically manipulated products on the market.  Natural is always best.
  • Light up the stage! When preparing for a showing, don't leave your lookers looking for switches and knobs to facilitate their viewing.  Make sure your home is bright and welcoming.  You want them to be able to picture themselves living there, rather than tripping on the stairs in the dark.  This includes the outside as well, especially in those areas where darkness comes early in the winter months.
  • Take your pets out.  Cats, dogs, gerbils, hamsters, parrots, etc.  If at all possible get them out of the home for showings.  Not only might you have sensitive noses, but many people fear animals of any kind, for all kinds of reasons.  It may seem like a nuisance, but its one that should pay you well on the other end.

These are just a few tips in readying your house for sale.  As a home seller, you have to remember that you never know whose going to be looking.  By preparing in advance, you can alleviate many of the common complaints heard when it comes to viewing homes.

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