This could be subtitled “You DO Want to Sell Your Home, Right?”
In many part of the United States, and certainly in the Charleston area, there is a seller’s market. Housing costs have risen and more property is being sold compared to last year. However this doesn’t mean everything sells quickly or at a great price. Sometimes sellers sabotage themselves.
Not every home looks as beautiful as those from the iconic “rainbow row” in downtown Charleston. Judging from some of the homes I visited recently, home sellers can use a reminder of what does (or doesn’t) make a good impression. Don’t forget you typically have once to create desire for your home and to obtain the best price. So in no particular order, here are some hints. This isn’t an all-inclusive list but it’s a good start!
Declutter– ever notice how bare and tidy a model home looks? You are going for the same appeal. This is the time to simplify your life. Get rid of things you don’t want or need. If you still have loads after throwing and giving things away, pack up almost all of your items that aren’t necessary for daily living.
I have advised sellers to have a pod delivered and use it for their packed boxes and excess furniture, etc. They can have it taken away and then later delivered to their new home. I advise them to have the moving truck take the stuff that’s left, unpack it and THEN have the Pod delivered. (Note: This works for messy garages too!)
Light bulbs – a light, spacious feeling is most attractive. You may have gotten used to the house being dark or may be trying to conserve energy. Whatever the reason, we no longer live in caves so invest in some lights and electricity!
Front door – this is crucial. You want curb appeal so trim the grass and shrubs, clean up the front porch and paint the front door! I like bright colors – red, pink, yellow, blue – something that grabs attention. Curb appeal is the strongest and first impression so make sure shrubs are trimmed, etc.
Paint – you would be surprised how a fresh coat of paint in a neutral color really brightens up a room. Neutral paint (and decor) appeals to most buyers. I suggest light grey (stylish), beige, off whites. This isn’t the time to get too
creative. Save your red accent wall for your new home but pops of color can really liven up a room. Remember that color trends do change and you can instantly update a house just by using the newer hues. A beautiful grey is Silverpointe by Sherwin Williams.
Carpet – If a good steam cleaning isn’t touching those stains, it may be time to replace it in some rooms. There are a number of reasonable carpet stores and you don’t have to go for the most expensive. If you don’t have the money to replace the carpet, consider giving a carpet allowance.
Pets – it is crucial that your pets be locked away or are off site when the house is shown. They are either freaked out or protective about having strangers there and it is distracting to potential buyers. Make sure any pet smells are eliminated. Clean out the kitty litter box and get rid of those doggie “land mines” in the yard!
Knobs – either clean or replace door knobs both outside and inside the house. Consider replacing kitchen knobs as needed.
Air Fresheners – A stinky house just isn’t appealing and it leaves a lasting BAD impression. Invest in some air fresheners and while we are on the topic, it might be time to cut down on fried foods (especially fish), garlic and onions. I’ve seen some sellers go so far as to bake cookies (refrigerator cookies) and leave them out for the showing with a sign “help yourself”. Ok it was overkill but it worked!
Clean – You have heard it said that cleanliness is godliness. I can’t stress this enough. . Do a thorough cleaning or hire a service. Don’t forget to clean around the air conditioning vents and grates. Clean the ceiling fans too (you would be surprised how often this is neglected). Looks great? Keep it up! I recommend a quick dusting, using the Swifter on tile/lineoleum, and vacuuming every other day. Wash the dishes. Make the beds. Put away all your hair care products, make up, etc. I realize this is a form of tyranny but if you follow my advice, it won’t last long.
Your realtor has become an expert in what to do in order to sell your house quickly and for the most money. If you are interested in selling your home in the Berkeley, Dorchester or Charleston counties of South Carolina, please contact me at 843-471-7315 or Shawn.Phillips@kw.com. Want to search for your dream home? Start here: Shawn-Phillips.kw.com
I look forward to earning your business!