There’s no bad time to sell a house in Texas. Unlike northern states where you might have to worry about moving in the middle of a snowstorm if your house sells in January, home sales peak at radically different times of the year throughout the state. One great thing about preparing your Katy home for sale in the fall, though, is that the weather is beginning to turn, cooling Texas’s summer heat. In other words, it’s the perfect time to get your property ready to show.
If you’re a Katy property owner considering a new listing this fall, then you’ll need to do a little work to get ready. Here’s how to prepare your property and your listing for an upcoming sale, with an eye to both standard preparations and new concerns raised by showings in the age of COVID-19.
Evaluate The Market
The good news for those considering a fall home sale in the Katy-area is that the market has been healthy throughout the course of the pandemic. Don’t hold back on selling this fall just because you’re worried. Many new buyers have been drawn to the market due to record low interest rates, so you could see a quicker sale than you expect.
Play Up The Suburbs
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, many people have weighed the potential benefits of moving from dense, urban areas to the suburbs. As a Katy-area property owner, you have that element on your side. Play up your location, your home’s outdoor space, the neighborhood amenities, and make sure to put in extra effort when it comes to curb appeal. Does your property have a front garden or porch? Be sure to spruce these up before taking photos or holding a showing.
While all suburbs are seeing extra attention as people look for ways to be outdoors and socialize safely, Katy is unusually well-equipped in terms of community offerings. Catch the eye of those browsing listings from out of town by noting the Arboretum, walking and biking trails, and parks. Though equipment and benches have been closed to use during the pandemic, the parks are open and offer plenty of room to play, picnic, and exercise.
Another element to highlight given today’s anxieties: the Katy school system. Katy ISD recently ranked 14th out of over 1,000 Texas school districts based on factors like teacher quality, SAT/ACT scores, and graduation rates. At a time when every parent is fretting about educational access, quality, and safety, knowing they’ll have access to great schools can be a significant draw for families.
Skip The Open House
Pre-COVID open houses were popular, but they weren’t actually very effective. In fact, very few people actually purchased homes that they encountered through an open house event. Instead, these events tend to draw nosy neighbors and people who wouldn’t actually be qualified to buy the property, but who are feeling curious. It’s too risky and not worth the effort. Schedule viewings and leave it at that.
As for showings, your real estate agent has likely developed a standard safety protocol, but be sure to discuss the issue in advance. Most agents request owners not be present in the home during showings, but you may still want to supply masks and hand sanitizer if you’re concerned about showing protocols. Stocking up on extra cleaning supplies to wipe down surfaces when you arrive home is also a good idea.
Recheck Your HVAC
Most Texas homes have central air conditioning, and those systems get a serious workout during the summer. Now that things are beginning to cool off a bit, it’s a good time to bring in an HVAC repair professional. A new filter and a tune-up can make a big difference and will ensure that, in the event your viewing happens on a hot day – certainly a possibility well into autumn in Texas – that everyone will be comfortable.
Clear The Gutters
As the seasons change, the leaves on the trees will start the fall, and those leaves almost inevitably clog gutters and downspouts. As you tidy up your home’s exterior, make sure to get up on a ladder and clean out the gutters so that you’re starting the season with a fresh slate. Proper gutter maintenance is critical to overall roof upkeep, and can prevent leaks and water damage down the line.
Add A Pleasant Scent
We’ve all been cooped up at home for months with the windows closed and the air conditioner on, so it should come as no surprise if your home has acquired a musty smell. In fact, even if we weren’t experiencing a pandemic, it’s normal for our homes to acquire a smell – and for residents not to notice it. To you, your house just smells like home, but even the slightest off smell will be noticeable to potential buyers. Don’t start baking cookies just yet, though.
According to real estate professionals, the only scent you want your home to have is a clean, neutral scent. That means no overpowering air fresheners or scented candles, and definitely no cookies. Vacuum, take out the garbage, and wipe things down, and avoid cooking anything with a strong scent when you have showings coming up. It’s understandable that you still live in the space but a clean home with a light lemon scent will cover a variety of sins.
Get Great Support
Most people know they should throw on a fresh coat of paint and do some staging in preparation for putting their property on the market, but you only get really good at preparing properties for sale by doing it over and over again – and Green Residential is equipped with those key skills. Our Katy-area property management team is happy to work with you on staging, photographing, and listing your home for the best results. With over 40 areas of property management experience, we know what sells, and we already have all the right tools to execute a great listing, so there’s no reason for you to duplicate those efforts.
Feeling ready to put your Katy, Texas home on the market? Contact Green Residential today to learn more about our services. You’ll be hanging that “Sold” sign out front in no time.