The current real estate market is still crazy! Buyer activity is still through the roof and sellers are seeing home prices continue to go up. We have been getting lots of calls from soon-to-be sellers getting their homes ready for sale and looking for advice to get top dollar. In the fall even in a “normal” market, there are usually fewer homes on the market than in the spring and this year inventory is historically low.
If you plan on selling soon, you will want to do everything in your power to attract as many homebuyers as possible. One of the first things you should do is examine, and, if needed, repair any major systems. If you’re unaware of any, you may want to hire a professional home inspector who will point out potential shortcomings. Chances are excellent that a potential buyer will hire a home inspector to examine the house, so you might as well save yourself any surprises down the road. Along those lines, and I have mentioned it before, it isn’t a bad idea to have a presale home inspection by a licensed inspector. You can take the information the inspector finds and preempt any issues that could come up during the buyer’s home inspection. Once the items that the home inspector comes across are repaired, then you should turn to appearance.
And when it comes to appearance there are many things to consider, here are just a few:
Curb appeal: The days of a REALTOR® putting you in his or her car and driving you to homes to see that you know nothing about until you park outside are gone. Would-be buyers can get your address and most will drive-by before deciding whether or not to set an appointment. How does your home look from the street? What is the condition of the roof? Do you need paint? Are the grounds in good shape? The leaves will be falling soon, make sure they are off the lawn. As the saying goes, “you never get a second chance to make a first impression.”
Get rid of clutter: This may fall under the first impression category if your buyer didn’t do a drive-by. So…if you have too much furniture, put some of it away (not in another room!) or into storage. Fewer pieces of furniture will make the room seem larger and more open. Often times people have difficulty visualizing their furniture in your home, so make it easier on them. A fresh coat of paint inside a room can do wonders, but try to keep the colors neutral.
Talk to a professional: Now is a good time to talk with a REALTOR®. Ask about their experience, find out how well they know the area and what kind of sales volume they have done. Once you have someone lined up you can follow his or her additional recommendations and begin the final phase of preparation before your house goes on the market.
Set a Competitive Price: Your REALTOR® will begin by conducting a market analysis of your house and give you an estimate of the fair market value based on how similar homes in your neighborhood are selling for. Your agent should be able to explain to you why he/she thinks your home is priced the way it is. Whatever price you decide on should be a mutual decision between you and your agent based on what the market says it should sell for.
The best time to sell your home is when it first comes on the market. You can never, ever be a “new” listing again. Make sure you do everything you can do make your home stand out, not only from a pricing perspective but in appearances as well. Don’t miss the perfect buyer for your home because you didn’t go the extra steps to get the home ready. With inventory low bordering on nonexistent, and interest rates staying low, this fall will be a terrific time to get your home sold for a price that wasn’t remotely possible last year.
If you have any questions about this article, real estate in general, or are looking to buy or sell a home please contact me, John McCarthy at Rowley Realty, 165 Main St., Rowley, MA 01969, Phone: 978 948-2758, Cell 978 835-2573 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.