When you’re house hunting, any good Realtor will tell you it’s a mistake to buy the best house in a neighborhood. In fact, most will advise you to buy the worst house in the best neighborhood you possibly can … assuming you’re willing to put in some elbow grease and pay for a few renovations.
The logic here is that you can improve the house, but you have very little control over the neighborhood. When it comes time to sell your home, though, the opposite becomes true. You want one of the best houses in the neighborhood, so you can command top dollar and ensure your property sells in a matter of days, not weeks or months.
The challenge is that a lot of work may be necessary after you buy the worst house in a good neighborhood to get it in shape to sell as the best house in that neighborhood. What do you do, exactly, and how can you get the most bang for your buck?
Five Tips to Make Your House More Desirable
Every property has its nuances, but certain tried-and-true methods can increase a home’s desirability when you have a future sale in mind. Here are five of the best tips to keep in the back of your mind.
Nail the First Impression
The value of curb appeal cannot be understated. Though it’s obviously not the only factor that influences purchasing decisions, it’s undeniably the first.
Curb appeal should grab a potential buyer’s attention and set expectations for what’s inside. Even if the structure is immaculate on the interior, an unkempt yard or sickly trees make it harder for a buyer to develop a positive impression.
A simple and cost-effective trick to boost your curb appeal is to give your front door some love. “The door is a very relevant style element, and front doors deserve special attention,” interior designer Barbara Gilbert says.
“It should be attractive enough to command attention, and then entice you to walk through it to see what’s on the other side.”
Another worthwhile investment is to pay for your windows, doors, and siding to be professionally cleaned. You might not have noticed how much dirt and grime has accumulated over the years. You can make your house pop with a thorough cleaning.
A final suggestion is to tidy up the landscaping and install some good lighting. A lot of home buyers drive through neighborhoods in the evening after work. If you have good lighting, your home will be seen at its best at any time of day.
Fix the Little Things
Every home has at least a few little things that break or deteriorate. If you’ve been in your house for a number of years, you may have a lot of these.
But they might have become normal to you. You’ve gotten used to the broken doorknob in the bathroom, the squeaky front door, and the cracked window in the basement.
But a potential home buyer might easily regard these items as signs of neglect. Worse, he or she might wonder: What else is the seller hiding?
Fortunately, little things like broken doorknobs, squeaky hinges, and cracked windows are easy and inexpensive to repair. Go ahead and take care of them now and you don’t give buyers any reasons to doubt.
Put Some Money Into the Kitchen
Every home buyer has particular preferences. Some folks want an open layout with a large living room that has enough space for a sectional sofa. Other people dream of a sizeable walk-in closet and posh master suite.
Although everyone has his or her own unique expectations, one thing that everyone seeks in a home is a modern and updated kitchen.
The great news for you is that renovating a kitchen doesn’t have to be “out of this world” expensive. All you have to do in most kitchens is replace the countertops, put up a new backsplash, and install a couple of stainless steel appliances.
If you renovate a couple of years before you plan to move, you’ll get to enjoy it as well.
Invest in a Feature That Sets You Apart
You should have a feature that sets your residence apart from the other homes in your neighborhood. It might be a big backyard with lots of outdoor living space, when everyone around you has a small plot of land.
It could be five bedrooms when adjacent homes have just three. Or it could be something as simple as a two-car garage when the neighbors have only carports.
Whatever it is, you need a differentiating factor that will make people more likely to pay a premium. That’s how to ensure your house develops a reputation for being the best in the neighborhood.
Hire the Right Agent
Perception is everything in the housing market. One person’s trash could be another one’s treasure. If you want your home to be the best in the neighborhood, you need a real estate agent who is going to market your property as if it’s the best value on the street.
Everyone knows a real estate agent. The problem is that people often feel obligated to recommend or use their brother, friend, or neighbor, when that person may not be right for the job.
Take some time to search for an agent who will help you maximize your return on investment.
Let Green Residential Save You Money
When it comes time to sell your Katy home, make sure you do everything possible to keep more of your money in your pocket. A traditional sale will cost the seller 6 percent of the sales price — 3 percent to the selling agent and 3 percent to the buying agent — but you can save thousands by using a flat-fee real estate agency such as Green Residential.
At Green Residential, we charge a flat rate that benefits sellers and allows them to keep more of the money they’re owed at the closing table. The typical 6 percent commission would cost you $36,000 on a $600,000 home, but we charge just $29,000 … a $7,000 savings.
If you’re interested in learning more about how you can work with us, please contact us today!