A good place to begin is to consider who your likely buyer will be. A single person? A small or large family? A first-time buyer, a move-up buyer an empty-nest buyers? A contractor?
When you have some idea of your likely buyer, think what attributes that group of buyers is looking for in a home. Now look objectively at your home and note which of those qualities your home has and which it does not. Also, consider what qualities your likely buyer would consider undesirable in a home (such as lack of parking or located on a busy street) and note whether your home has any of those negatives.
The combination of positive and negative attributes will determine the eventual sale price of your home. To the extent possible, prepare your home by increasing the positives and decreasing the negatives.
Unless your likely buyer is a contractor, you should start by eliminating major deferred maintenance items such as roof repair or replacement, structural pest control work, or other major components of the property that are in disrepair. These are items that most buyers and their lenders will want to see done before close of escrow. (If you cannot afford to perform this work prior to placing your home on the market then you should have reports, bids and estimates for the work as part of your disclosure package so that buyers can assess the amount of money they will need to undertake the work.)
Many homes are ‘staged’ before they are placed on the market. Staging is designed to maximize the home’s appeal to buyers. Staging can be as simple as de-cluttering and re-arranging furniture or as complex as a complete makeover, including new paint, carpets, landscaping and furnishing. As you prepare to market your home, visit open houses of similar properties to see how they show. These homes are your competition. To get top dollar, your house should look better than the best of the competition.
Whether you opt for a full staging or a minimal do-it-yourself preparation of your home, the following guidelines should be observed:
Sound like a lot of work? Your Heyler agent is knowledgeable about all aspects of preparing your home for sale and understands the marketplace in which your home is located. We can recommend resources for obtaining reports and can help you evaluate the options for marketing your home to bring you the highest price and best terms.