When it comes to selling your home, appearance matters. We humans think with our hearts and buy with our eyes, so perfecting the cosmetics of your home can drastically reduce the time it takes to sell and even help your bottom line. I know there’s rarely time for these changes during normal life, much less while preparing to move, but let’s take a minute to imagine an ideal world: this is what you would do.
Remove the Personal
The key to successfully selling a home is creating an environment where prospective buyers can imagine themselves living. Part art, part science, good staging makes your space a blank canvas others can paint themselves into.[perfectpullquote align=”right” cite=”” link=”” color=”#dd1f1f” class=”” size=””]The key to successfully selling a home is creating an environment where prospective buyers can imagine themselves living.[/perfectpullquote]
But if Fido’s dog bowl that your kid painted is sitting out beneath ten frames of the family Christmas, buyers feel like they’re invading a personal space. Pack the photos, take down the turkey handprints on the refrigerator, and store the kids’ medals. I know it’s hard, and a good Realtor understands your emotions. But this is what it takes.
We all have clutter. Everyone’s guilty. And we all know it’s unattractive, so do everything possible to clear the shelves, refrigerators, counters, and other visible flat surfaces. But don’t stop there. Consolidate, donate, pack, and organize until those baseboards you haven’t seen in years are visible once more. Which leads us to the next step: cleaning.
Now that parts of your house are visible that haven’t seen daylight in years, it’s time to grab a rag, mop, broom, and whatever else you can find. Wipe off baseboards, clean floors, dust, and vacuum until the place shines like Mr. Clean’s dome. Consider hiring it out if you can’t find time to do this yourself.
We all know the sayings about first impressions, but do you know that science backs them up? “Before we can finish blinking our eyes, we’ve already decided whether we want to hire, date, hate, or make friends with a person we’re encountering for the first time,” according to psychologists. So how long do you have to sell someone on your home? The front door. Speaking of front doors, how does yours look? Paint or replace it if the years have left it scarred or faded. [perfectpullquote align=”full” cite=”” link=”” color=”#dd1f1f” class=”” size=””]So how long do you have to sell someone on your home? The front door.[/perfectpullquote]
Polish the front porch, perfect the entryway, and take down any warning signs (dogs, soliciting, trespassing, etc.). This is your home’s handshake and smile as it meets prospective buyers. Don’t leave it with a limp wrist and dirty teeth.
If you’ve made it this far, you might need a nap just thinking about all I’ve said. But for the strong-willed, highly-motivated, or over-achievers, one of the best, most cost-effective improvements you can do is paint. Fresh paint brings a home to life like nothing else.[perfectpullquote align=”left” cite=”” link=”” color=”#dd1f1f” class=”” size=””] Fresh paint brings a home to life like nothing else.[/perfectpullquote]
And if you’ve lived in a rainbow, consider repainting with more neutral colors. For extra sharp corners and less stress, pay a professional. You’ll likely recover at least part of your costs in your listing price, not to mention the shorter time on the market.
Buying, owning, and selling a home all require effort. That’s not to say you can’t sell a cluttered, dirty, dinged-up house. You can. But you can’t reasonably expect top-dollar prices when all someone can think about is how much work is needed before they can live there. On the other hand, by doing these cosmetic updates, your home will likely sell faster and for more, which is always a huge relief. If you need help with selling your home or have questions, feel free to give us a call at 903-734-2235. We’re always happy to help.