The housing market in the Southeastern Pa area has been a bit sluggish lately to say the least. The For Sale signs are sitting out on the front lawn a bit longer then they had been just a year ago. Are you thinking about selling, or is your home currently up for sale now? There are some things that you need to consider and questions to ask.
You need to take a good look at your property, and ask yourself, “Is this property ready for a homebuyer or is there something more I can do to help make it sell?” Most realtors will tell you that in this current market most young buyers are not looking for potential, they want “MOVE IN READY”. You need to look at your home through their eyes. They want very little to do with possible repairs or renovations. Even the idea of having to change the paint color of a room can be a huge turn off for the homebuyer. Even if they decide to make an offer, it will be minus all the costs that they feel they need to put into the home to make it livable.
Here are a few questions to ask yourself.
Is the exterior of the home inviting? Does it have curb appeal? You want the first thing the homebuyer sees, to be welcoming. You want hedges, garden, and paths to be showing their best. Make sure your homes windows are not block by shrubs or trees, or that they are too close to the home. Don’t use wood mulch up against your home, that just an invite for termites and carpenter ants and also leave black spot mold on any stucco or siding.
Are the windows and door trim freshly painted? Are all your shutters up and hanging straight? You may not see it as a big deal, but cracked or pealing paint, missing shutters, or damaged gutters, are the first indicators to a homebuyer that you most likely did not maintain your home well. Even if your interior is looking good, a bad exterior might make them wonder what you could be hiding.
Does the house or areas around the house need power washing? Is your fence and gates in proper order? Grungy stucco, brick or siding, can tell a homebuyer that you just didn’t care. Loose fencing or broken gates can make a potential buyer turn around and leave.
Let’s not forget the interior.
Are your rooms free of clutter? Here is a simple rule; you want to show a homebuyer that your rooms have… well room. You want them to notice the trim, the hardwood floor, the space of the room, not the pile of boxes, or kids toys stashed in the corner. Get what is not essential to the sale of the house into storage. That may mean cleaning out your basement garage or attic as well.
Are your walls and ceilings free of holes and cracks? You may have had a stress crack in your living room for the past 25 years. It never got any bigger and after a wile you hardly noticed it. To you, its no big deal. The homebuyer can see it as a part of a possible bigger problem. They wonder about the structure or the foundation of the house. They know that comes with big dollar signs.
Are your carpets clean, and wood floor polished? Dull floors are a sales killer. You don’t want a homebuyer looking down, adding up the cost of new flooring. Make sure if you have carpet, they are clean and smell fresh. Hardwood floors should be as scuff, scratch free and clean as possible.
Are you rooms painted in neutral color? You may love the bold color choices you picked for your home, but you need to realize it not everyone’s taste. Those bright red walls were for you. Now it’s time to let go and go neutral, so the homebuyer can imagine how the room would look for them and their furnishings.
Is your furniture old or taking up too much room? If your furniture is very dated, bulky or there is too much of it in the room, it’s time to consider removing it altogether and possibly renting some newer furniture for the duration of the home sale. Your realtor may tell you that an empty house is better that a house full of old outdated, or worn furniture.
The big question.
It takes money to fix all this up, why should I pour money into a home that I am trying to get rid of? Easy, the money you put into preparing your home for sale can get you that higher asking price you really want. and that gives you a good return on your investment.. It also could cut down on the time your home is on the market, creating a quick sale.
If this seems all bit overwhelming to you, then let Mathews Home Service handle it. We know preparation is key We have the experience and know-how to get it done for you. Call and ask about our Home Sale Preparation: 215.371.4402 or use the handy contact form.