Monday, March 4, 2013

{Sold} in less than 30 days

I mentioned a few weeks ago, that we sold our home and are moving to a town 10 miles south. With the economy and housing market, we were a little nervous our house would 'sit' for a little or we would accept a price less than what we wanted. Good news: neither of those two things happened. We sold our home is less than a month and the purchase price was right where we wanted it.

Of course, everyone wants to try and make money on their house and some may even wait for a better offer, but that's a big risk you may regret in the future. Here are some great tips on how to sell your home fast.

1. {Clean} I can't stress how important it is to have a clean house. No one wants to see dirty carpets, dusty fans or dead bugs in the basement. We went in each room of the house and made a list of everything that had to be cleaned, even the little things. We taped the list to each door and felt accomplished when we could cross something off. The list included: dusting fans, blinds, baseboards, furniture, vacuuming, deep-cleaning bathrooms, etc. Any little thing that had to be done before a showing got written down. 

2. {Maximize room size and move furniture around} Most rooms already had an open layout so this step went fairly quick. There was one room in our house that was the catch-all room since we lived here. We knew we had to organize this room and stage it so perspective buyers could see the potential. We worked with what we already had (love seat, filing cabinet and 2 bookshelves) and called it a study. We moved the furniture around to utilize the space and make the room feel bigger.

3. {Declutter} This is a super important step if you have a lot of 'stuff'. It is hard for some buyers to see how big a room may be if it is full of furniture that is too big for the space. We utilized this step in our basement. It is unfinished and has acted as a storage area for extra furniture, holiday items, patio furniture during off-season, etc. It was a mess! We rented a storage unit (for only $60/month) and started loading our cars up. This opened up the basement and allowed buyers to see how big it could be if they wanted to finish it in the future. Don't forget about your closets. Just because they have doors on them, doesn't mean people won't open them. They want to see how much space is in there, so minimize the 'stuff' and either throw it away, donate it or put it in storage.

4. {Create a honey- do list} Have you been putting things off around the house that need to be fixed before people come look at it? We needed to paint our interior doors since day 1, and somehow this got pushed to the back burner. The doors were scuffed and some had crayon on them from the previous owners. We looked past it, but knew how much better they would look painted.We went around the house and wrote things down that needed attention like tightening a toilet seat or getting touch-up paint for a mark on the wall. Don't overlook the small stuff

5. {Keep it comfortable} Once you start showing your home, make it comfortable for potential buyers. We turned the heat up to 68-70 (normally it's 65 when we are at work), we left water bottles out and some chocolates as well.  If you have a dog, lock them in a crate in a room that buyers won't spend a lot of time in. We choose a secondary bedroom and put a blanket over the crate hoping this would calm him so he wouldn't bark. Just leave a note on the table so they are aware.

6. {Personalize things} Our realtor suggested leaving a handwritten note on the table by the water and booklets. We talked about main points such as how we renovated our home completely, that the great room was perfect for entertaining and close amenities such as Kroger and the highway. Don't go too much in depth, but something short and sweet telling them a little more about your family and house would be perfect. Also, you don't need to remove every frame and picture in your house. We ended up leaving all of ours up. I would suggest taking it down if it's a big 3 ft. canvas and obnoxious. People like to see who currently lives there, it paints a picture and tells a story about the house.

7. {Price aggressive} Sure, everyone wants to make money off their home and get the highest price possible, but this might mean waiting. The longer you wait, the longer your house sits on the market and people wonder why. We started with a higher number just to see what kind of traffic it brought in. Unfortunately, things were slow and we had no time to waste. After 10 days, we dropped the price to right where we wanted to end up. This immediately brought multiple showings and a few offers to us. Price is not something to play around with. Rather than dropping it slowly, drop it to the price where you want to end up.

7. {Get an awesome realtor} This is key! Our realtor we used this time around sold us our home when we bought it a few years ago. We stayed in touch and she saw our renovations over time. She was very knowledgeable on exactly what we did in each room and the value it brought to our home. This helped tremendously during negotiations and the appraisal. She made a great booklet for buyers to take that talked about all the wonderful amenities in our home. She offered suggestions to us for showings and our price and guided us the whole way. She was knowledgeable when it came time to writing addendums and all that fun stuff. You need to get a realtor that is passionate about what they do and will put you first. If we didn't have a good realtor, there is a good chance our house would still be on the market. { Sarah, you rocked it. We can't thank you enough! }

This is what worked for us. Do you have any other tips and tricks that you think would be valuable?

xo, Erin

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the great compliment! You did everything I asked and then some! For those of your readers who are thinking about buying or selling, do as Erin suggested. Though it might be tempting to try to do it yourself or work with a budget part time Realtor, the best results are had by working with a career agent who understands your needs and communicates effectively. Perception is everything these days and that includes the quality of your Realtor and their Broker. I love you guys and am excited to see the future transformations on your new home, too!