It’s a competitive real estate market out there, and you need to sell your house before you make your move. So that calls for a lot of effort in the most optimal way – and a little luck – before you open the door to potential buyers.
We’ve done the homework on what and what not to do, made a list of our top 7 tips; the rest is up to you! Good luck!
- Pick the Right Price at the Right Time to Sell: Home sales reports show that you’re much more likely to sell your home in the spring, the peak time of year homebuyers are on the hunt. It’s advised not to list your home any later than February for the best in buyer activity. For the right price, find out how much your home is worth using a home estimate tool and work with your realtor to decide on a starting number. It’s important to be realistic and not overprice in today’s market; some even suggest lowering your listing price 15 to 20 percent off the value of your home for a quick sell (interested buyers will bid up the price).
- Declutter & Depersonalize: Before you get your professional photos made, take on the big task of decluttering your home. (You may even want to rent a storage unit or find a family member with some extra storage space for all your things.) That means stacks of anything on counters, shelves, floors, and furniture must go, and closets and cabinets should be tidied and half-empty (because of buyers snoop). And, because these buyers want to be able to picture themselves in the home, you’ll need to remove personal items, like photos, memorabilia collections, mail and personal paperwork, dog bowls and toys, and litter box.
- Remodel Wisely: We’re not suggesting that you over-upgrade right before you list your home, but, if you have some extra money, it’s not a bad idea to invest in some sort of upgrade to your kitchen, the most appealing space of your house. In fact, it may cost you a few thousand dollars to replace your countertops, but a buyer may want $10,000 off your listing price if the kitchen looks dated. Focus on painting, cabinet hardware, cleaning the tile grout, and buying one stainless steel appliance. It’s worth it; expect to get 85 percent of your money back.
- Hire a Professional Stager & Photographer: You can handle the decluttering and depersonalizing, but let the staging to a professional if you want to sell quickly. A stager will know how to decorate to highlight your home’s best assets, open up space and paint your walls neutral colours. Online photos are the first impression of your home, so hire a professional, who knows how to capture the best features, lighting and inviting angles of every space of your home.
- Be Ready to Show Your Home: We know it can be a hassle, but it’s necessary to exit the house and have your home “show-ready” for the schedule of home buyers coming through your front door (unless it’s completely impossible). Remember, it’s better than having no buyers at all!
- Stand Out from the Competition: You want buyers to remember your property from other nearby homes, so extra added touches, like setting out a tray of homemade cookies, water bottles or a basket of fruit with a sign that says “Help Yourself,” could go a long way at a showing. Also keep in mind that your buyer’s first impression starts at your home’s curb appeal, so be sure to pay attention to details like your entryways, fresh flower boxes, shrubs, and front lawn.
- Hire the Right Real Estate Agent: The average home sells between 65-70 days, but the right agent could give you an added edge. You want an agent who truly cares about selling your home, is fully informed on the market and comps in your neighbourhood and is equipped with all of the technology and tools needed to mark your house sold.