What is the one thing you should not do to prepare your home for sale? You should not take any action until you speak with an experienced listing agent. I know, you are probably thinking about painting and repairs and general “sprucing up” now that the holiday decorations are all packed away. You may be daunted by the amount of money you think you need to invest and the “honey-do” list that’s a mile long. STOP. Let a professional guide you on how to spend your time, energy, and treasure wisely – here are some examples from real homeowners who thought they needed to do “more.” I saved them tons of money and sweat equity by prioritizing the things that buyers really want.
She thought she should replace the carpet in her one bedroom condo. It was in poor condition due to the paws of two adorable grey kitties. By offering a flooring allowance instead, she did not have to endure the inconvenience and time of purchasing carpet. What if the color was not pleasing to the buyer? What if they preferred laminate to new carpet? She did not have to drain her savings and could take the expense of the allowance off the proceeds of the sale instead.
These nice people wanted to do so much to help, but they were focused on the wrong priorities. Instead of painting the garage walls in their elevated home, we spent money trimming the overgrown but beautiful live oak in front of the house. You can’t put a price on those beauties plus, it opened up the front for better photos. The husband also wanted to paint the garage floor with high-gloss, epoxy paint. I knew that would not make a difference to most buyers but power-washing the exterior would make a huge impression. We sold to the first people through the door for 95% of asking price.
I sold a home in Hanahan that was on the market for less than a week after not selling with another agent earlier in the year. We did not rip out the kitchen or have the entire interior repainted. We used a much more effective and more importantly cost – effective technique – staging. My clients were talking about all the things they thought they needed to do before putting it back on the market and I told them not to spend a dime until my staging expert and I could see the home in person.
We made a list of the furniture to be taken out to show just how spacious the home actually was. We also itemized the décor items that needed to be packed up before the photographer arrived. We gave them their assignments throughout the inside and outside of the house and then set to work ourselves.
We literally shopped their house. The large vases in the kitchen replaced the visual clutter in the dining room hutch with their simple lines and pops of color. Perhaps the most difficult task was the living room. My clients had recently purchased two large sofas and a large chair that filled the space. They were super comfy but the placement was not ideal. We moved them and some other pieces around the room to better advantage. As for spending, we purchased a new comforter (she needed for the new home anyway) and a $5 pitcher and cup set to stage the photos. Total spent, $80 – sold for full price in 7 days.
Call me to receive a free Custom Market analysis and to help prioritize what Lowcountry buyers want and not what HGTV sellers think all buyers want.
- – Terry Bell-Aby, Realtor®
- Mobile 508-627-2988 | Terry@dunesproperties.com