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A well-manicured lawn, neatly trimmed shrubs and a clutter-free porch help sellers put their best foot forward and make prospects feel welcome. So does a freshly painted – or at least freshly scrubbed – front door. If it’s autumn, rake the leaves. If it’s winter, shovel the walkways. The fewer obstacles between prospects and the true appeal of the real estate seller’s home, the better.
Here’s your chance to clean up in real estate. Tidy the living room, the bathroom, the kitchen. If your woodwork is scuffed or the paint is fading, consider some minor touch-ups and redecorating. Sellers can benefit from updating the hardware on kitchen cabinets, adding new slipcovers to sofas and keeping a vase of fresh flowers in the entryway. These are some of the simple touches that can go a long way. If you’re worried about time, hire professional cleaners or painters to help get your house ready. Remember, prospects would rather see how great the seller’s home really looks than hear how great it could look “with a little work.”
Dripping water rattles the nerves, discolors sinks, and suggests faulty or worn-out plumbing. Burned-out bulbs or faulty wiring leave prospects in the dark. Don’t let those problems detract from what’s right with your home.
If cabinets or closet doors stick in your home, you can be sure they will also stick in a prospect’s mind. Don’t try to explain away sticky situations when you can easily plane them away. A little effort on the seller’s part can smooth the way toward a closing.
Homeowners learn to live with all kinds of self-set booby traps: roller blades on the stairs, festooned extension cords, slippery throw rugs and low-hanging overhead lights. Make your residence is as safe as possible for visitors.
Remember, potential buyers are looking for more than just comfortable living space. They’re looking for storage space, too. Sellers should make sure attics and basements are clean and free of unnecessary items.
The better organized a closet, the larger it appears. Now’s the time to box up those unwanted clothes and donate them to charity.
Bathrooms sell homes, so let them shine. Check and repair damaged or unsightly caulking in the tubs and showers. For added allure, sellers should display the best towels, mats and shower curtains.
Wake up prospects to the cozy comforts of your bedrooms. For a specious look, get rid of excess furniture. Colorful bedspreads and fresh curtains are a must if sellers want buyers to be able to imagine relaxing there.
Let the sun shine in! Sellers should pull back curtains and drapes so that prospects can see how bright and cheery the home is.
Turn on the excitement buy turning on all your lights – both inside and outside – when showing your home in the evening. Lights add color and warmth, and make prospects feel welcome.
Potential buyers often feel like intruders when they enter a home filled with people. Rather than giving your house the attention it deserves, they’re likely to hurry through. Sellers should keep the company present to a minimum.
Dogs and cars are great companions, but not when real estate sellers are showing their homes. Pets have a talent for getting underfoot. So do everybody a favor: keep Kitty or Spot outside, or at least out of the way.
Rock-and-roll will never die. But it might kill a real estate transaction. When it’s time for an agent to show the home, it’s time to turn down the stereo or TV.
It’s best if you’re not there when your home is being shown. However, if that’s not possible, be friendly – but it’s not necessary to force conversation. Prospects want to view the home with minimal distraction from the seller.
No matter how humble your abode, never apologize for its shortcomings. If a prospect volunteers a derogatory comment about your home’s appearance, let your experienced Real Estate Associate handle the situation.
Nobody knows a home better than the seller. But your Real Estate Sales Associates know buyers – what they need and what they want. Your Real Estate Associate will have an easier time articulating the virtues of your home if you stay in the background.
When prospects come to view your home, don’t distract them with offers to sell those furnishings you no longer need. You may lose the biggest sale of all.
When prospective buyers want to talk price, terms or other real estate matters, let them speak to an expert – your Real Estate Sales Associate. As the seller, you might feel tempted to weigh in, but your two cents could cost you much more.