What's the first
thing I should do to prepare a home for sale?
The first thing you need
to do is start thinking about your home as a commodity
that you want to sell. To be a successful
seller, you must detach yourself emotionally
from your home and be honest about how it
should look in order to sell. Property
condition and appearance play big roles in
home sales. Buyers discount the price if a
home needs work. You do not have to spend a
fortune preparing your home for sale.
Concentrate on cost-effective improvements
that will give you a good return on your
should I make when selling my house?
There is more than one way to sell a house,
but most experts agree that spending time on a
few basic home improvements can pay dividends.
Projects such as resurfacing kitchen cabinets,
installing closet storage systems, repainting
rooms and hiring a cleaning crew to clean
everything from walls and woodwork to carpets
and mini-blinds can help sell a home. Other
quick fixes that will catch a buyer's eye
include freshly trimmed shrubs and trees, new
house numbers or a new front door.
What is the least
expensive repair I can make to get my home
ready for sale?
Painting is the least expensive improvement
you can make to a home. A neutral decor may
seem boring, but it is a safe bet from a
resale standpoint. The same goes for floor
coverings: stick to neutral linoleum and
What are the best
colors to paint the exterior of my home if I
intend to sell soon?
Use neutral colors for the house--white, light
gray or tan. You may choose a bolder
complementary color for the trim, but save the
most vivid color to accent the front door.
What color should
we paint the interior of a house that we
intend to sell soon? Do I have to live with a
boring shade of white until we sell?
Not necessarily. Look for pastels and neutral
shades that complement the carpeting and
window coverings. Avoid dramatic colors such
as red, bright yellow, bold blue or emerald
green. Add bold accents with area rugs,
tablecloths, sofa pillows, and quilts.
does it usually take for a home to sell?
Most houses usually take three to four months
to sell in a typical real estate market. In a
hot market, however, homes can sell the day
they go up for sale. In a slow market, homes
may sit for months--even longer--before
selling. When considering your selling
strategy, take the time to research your
home's value online and get at least one
comparative market analysis to set your price
appropriately. If you need to sell quickly and
the market is slow, you may have to do extra
work to stage your home for sale or set a
lower price to attract buyers.
What is the
best pricing strategy to use when I am ready
The best strategy is to set a price closest to
what a reasonable buyer would expect to pay,
given recent comparable sales and market
conditions as well as your home's location,
condition, and competition. Get an estimate of
your home's value online. If you are planning
to work with a listing agent, ask at least
three to prepare a comparative market analysis
and a sales presentation for you. This will
give you three takes on recent sales, and
listing information about similar nearby
properties currently for sale. Don't
necessarily choose the agent who suggests the
highest list price; also look for the best
marketing plan along with the best personality
for your style and needs.