Most people find it fairly easy to make the decision to move. However, actually executing a move is a whole lot harder than it looks on paper. One of the more challenging aspects of the process is listing your house so that you can buy your next one. And if you want to get top dollar for it, there are a number of things you need to do prior to listing.
Do These 6 Things Before Listing Your House
When listing your house keep in mind, in a seller’s market (like we’re currently in), buyers don’t expect to buy a perfect house. They understand the competitive nature of the marketplace and are willing to invest in something that will require a little TLC.
Having said that, there are some projects you should take on before posting your house on the MLS. By doing the following, you’ll make the selling process smoother and more fruitful.
1. Electrical, Plumbing, Roofing Problems
When a buyer puts in an offer, they’ll have a home inspector review the property. While a home inspector is trained to find problems – and will almost certainly find some minor issues – your goal is to make sure they don’t discover major problems that delay the sale of the home or cause the buyer to withdraw their offer.
If you know of any problems with major systems in the home – such as electrical, plumbing, and roofing – be proactive and take care of them.
“You can also do things like trim all of your bushes at least 6-12″ away from the house and add fresh caulk in the bathrooms and kitchen, and around windowsills,” one home improvement blogger suggests. “These are all things an inspector will pick up on, so if you can take care of it before they come, that’s one less thing that they’ll need to point out to the buyer.”
2. Neutral Paint
Paint is an easy fix that buyers can do themselves after closing on a house, but there’s no sense in putting this project off if there’s a risk that the current paint colors could dissuade buyers from putting in a full-price offer.
If your home’s interior contains bright colored walls, you’re better off painting over them in neutral shades – such as white, gray, or beige. Even softer pastels will look nice.
For a couple hundred dollars – and less if you only need the paint – you can color a handful of rooms and totally change the look of your house. Talk about money well spent!
3. Door Upgrades
When it comes to curb appeal, the front door has a major impact on the aesthetic presentation of your house. Dated or dilapidated doors significantly lower the value of your home. The same goes for your garage door, which is the largest moving part in your entire house.
Upgrading and replacing these exterior doors could be a smart investment. According to the annual Cost vs. Value Report for 2018, a garage door replacement offers the single greatest ROI in terms of cost recouped (98.3 percent). An entry door replacement comes in third (91.3 percent).
If you can get a deal on these upgrades and pick the right styles, you’ll do more than break even. You could actually increase the value of your home by a few thousand dollars.
4. Pressure Washing
Few things are more unappealing to a buyer than a dirty exterior. If it’s been a while since you’ve shown your outdoor living areas some TLC, now would be a good time to change that.
“Consider buying or renting a power washer to clean paved surfaces,” HGTV suggests. “With very little time or effort, you can make grungy, grimy surfaces look brand-spanking new. Power washers also do a great job of cleaning fences, as well as brick and vinyl siding.”
Your home’s landscaping is one of the first and last things a prospective buyer will see when visiting your property. It also happens to be one of the most cost-effective parts of your home to upgrade. Here are a few tasks to consider:
- Pull all weeds and trim all shrubs. This will give buyers the impression that you take care of your yard – right down to the last details.
- Plant fresh annuals in flowerbeds and pots. Then add mulch to bring your yard to life.
- You’re probably familiar with indoor staging, but have you ever thought about staging your outdoor living areas? Whether it’s a small patio or large screened-in porch, help prospective buyers picture themselves enjoying these outdoor areas.
6. Odor Removal
When a prospective buyer walks into your house, they aren’t focusing on how a house smells. However, if the house has a bad odor, it’ll quickly grab their attention and pull it away from the positives.
Common causes of foul odors include rotten food, dirty AC vents, stinky carpets, and the presence of animals. Because you might be accustomed to the way your house smells, ask for an outside opinion before listing. If you find that your house has an undesirable smell, find a way to remove the odor (not just mask it).
Sell Your House with Green Residential
When it comes to listing your house, you deserve to keep the equity you’ve worked so hard to build up over the years. Unfortunately, the home sales process generally requires you to give three percent to the buyer’s agent and three percent to your agent. That’s six percent of the total sale price!
At Green Residential, we aren’t like most real estate companies. Instead of charging three percent for our side of the commission, we stick with a flat fee. On the sale of a $500,000 home, that means you could potentially save as much as $4,000. On higher end sales, you could save tens of thousands of dollars.
If you want to learn more about how our flat rate fee structure works and what sort of techniques we use to maximize your sales price, please contact us! We’d be happy to get your sales process moving in the right direction.