7 Great Tips to Sell Your House in Today’s Market

Selling a home today can be a challenge. And you can be certain that it will take more time and effort on your part than, let’s say, 5 years ago. But there are proven ways to stand out above the competition… so you can maximize your investment and minimize your time on the market.

Ready? Read on!

Tip #1: Price it right, right out of the gate!

Let’s face it, we are all emotionally invested in our homes. After all, we spent time and money decorating, enjoyed treasured memories of family and friends, and put in a heck of a lot of hard work creating the perfect lawn and garden. So the reality of what your home is worth, in today’s market, can be hard to stomach. Do yourself a favor – listen to your realtor, understand her market analysis, and price yourself right the first time. You’ll save time and money.

Tip #2: What’s hiding under the rug? Repair, replace and maintain!

It’s kind of like a long marriage – you love your spouse. Who cares if he snores occasionally? So you may not see the stains on the carpet. You may not hear the squeaky door, or the dirpping faucet. But just like a new relationship, your potential buyers will be looking at every detail to make their decision. And when they see maintenance issues, their first thought will often be: “what else is the owner hiding?” Inspire confidence through tackling your repairs, painting, and cleaning before putting your home on the market.

Tip #3: Curb appeal sells houses!

You love the show on HGTV – and your buyers do too. No buyer wants to walk up to a house with weeds, ugly furniture, or cracked sidewalks. Put the same polish on your outdoor space as your indoor space. You’ll stand out as a result.

Tip #4: Declutter, declutter, declutter…

You’ll have to clean out the closets and cupboards when you move anyway, right? Do ti now! Yes, scarily enough, potential buyers WILL look in your closets, bathroom vanities, and kitchen cupboards. Make sure you are well organized. Keep closets looking great with baskets for storage. Use one type of hanger throughout. Clear out crowded closets and donate what you can’t use. And finally – make every effort to maintain clean cupboards and bathroom storage.

Tip #5: Staging can be your best friend.

Check out the competition, and ask your realtor for recommended staging professionals in your area. To give you an idea of how well staging works, the Real Estate Staging Statistics Report by RESA, released in 2009, notes that, “Vacant homes in our study that were previously on the market an average of 190 days as un-staged properties had not sold. Those same homes were taken off the market, staged and re-listed. Those properties on average sold 28 days after they were staged, which is 85% less time on the market.”

Tip #6: What smells so good?

Studies show that certain fragrances put people into a good frame of mind. Vanilla, cookies, and fresh linen, to name a few. But the best scent for your showings is a clean, fresh home. Try to clean the house right before a showing or open house. Don’t cook the night before – cooking odors can linger for up to 2 days. Have the carpet cleaned if you have pet odors. And if you need to use air fresheners – use a light, clean fragrance, sparingly.

Tip #7: Hire a Realtor!

A professional Realtor can make selling your home easier, quicker, and more profitable. Realtors can provide pricing guidance based on market analysis of your neighborhood. Negotiations can be handled by the realtor, taking the emotion out of what can be a very trying process for the seller. Realtors can refer you to professionals you may need to get your house ready to sell. A good realtor will have referrals, a record of integrity, and a passion for client satisfaction!

Contact me at 614.523.3588 for a free market analysis of your home!


10 Common Inspection Requests

  1. Radon Mitigation: Radon is a cancer-causing odorless radioactive gas which comes from the natural breakdown of uranium in soil, rock and water and emits into the air we breathe. Although radon can be found all over the US, the EPA recommends radon levels to be below 4.0 pCi/L in order to be considered safe. Most home buyers will test for radon during their home inspection period. If levels are found to be higher than 4.0 pCi/L, they will most likely ask the seller to mitigate the problem. This can generally cost the seller between $1,000-$1,800.
  2. Grounding the CSST Line: Originally, flexible gas lines were not required to be grounded. However, over time we have learned that ungrounded CSST lines are susceptible to lightening strikes. Now, all CSST lines are required to be grounded. A licensed electrician will be needed to do this and can cost anywhere from $75-$175.
  3. Fireplace: Often times we forget to have our fireplaces cleaned every few years. Without regular cleaning there can be build-up of creosote which in turn could cause an internal fire. A typical fireplace cleaning costs approximately $175-$200.
  4. HVAC: Annual service of your furnace and air conditioner is highly recommended. If these items have not been serviced, their life expectancy may be reduced. A good cleaning will cost approximately $80 per unit.
  5. Window Seals: You may notice your windows are foggy or have some moisture between the panes. This simply means that the gas seal between the window panes has broken. This happens quite often with windows and can be easily fixed costing between $150-200 per window to do so.
  6. Downspouts and Gutters: Over time, the ground around the perimeter of the home can settle causing the connectors to the downspouts (which take the water out to the street) to separate. This can be easily fixed by the homeowner or handyman. Also, check your gutters as leaves can build up and keep water from flowing away from the home properly.
  7. Grading: The settling of the ground around the perimeter of the home could also cause the grade to slope towards the foundation rather than away. This could cause water to run down the outside of the basement walls when it rains, creating either a wet basement or pressure to the basement walls which could cause movement. Walk around your home and be sure the ground and/or beds slope away from the foundation.
  8. Plumbing: Overtime you may spring a lead in a pipe beneath a sink or the wax ring on the toilet may become loose. Check these items to be sure everything is tight and secure.
  9. Sinking Steps and Lifting Sidewalks: Have you noticed that the first step up to your house has sunken down or that the sidewalk as you walk up to the house has heaved? This is caused from either tree roots or movement of the ground beneath. Most concrete companies can remedy this problem by lifting or leveling the concrete.
  10. Bugs, Bugs and more Bugs!: In some homes, you might find termites, carpenter ants or carpenter bees. Treating these pests can be simple and easy, but you have to find them first. Having a pest inspection once a year is a good way to keep away any unwanted visitors.