If you live in New England, chances are you’re pining for sunny days, warm weather, fresh flowers and short sleeves. With spring two months away, if you’re planning to move, you may also be thinking about getting your house ready to sell.
“Most consumers believe that spring is the best time to put your home on the market,” said Kelly Hager or The Kelly Hager Group. “In actuality, the best time is late winter, specifically around February 1. There is very little inventory on the market at that time and by going live in early February, you will beat the spring rush when there is a large influx of homes that go on the market, thus adding to the competition home sellers would face.”
It may be tough to meet Hager’s February 1 deadline, but if you do want to beat the market, here are some quick tips for prepping your house:
Watch the Market
Burlington, Vt., realtor Ryan Donovan suggests looking at what’s for sale in your neighborhood, how long properties are on the market, what prices are doing and what similar homes are priced at.
“Knowledge is power, the power to get your home sold quickly and for the most money,” he said. “A good agent familiar with your area should know these numbers pretty well.”
Price it Right
“Ask your real estate agent to do a broker’s price opinion with the top brokers in your town,” said Real Estate Agent Danielle Scherman. “This will really help in pricing your property correctly from the get go. Ask your agent to solicit feedback from these expert brokers so you can anticipate questions, challenges, etc., and take action accordingly.”
Take Professional Photos
“Be sure to talk with the photographer about the best time of day,” said Scherman. “Be sure to reschedule if the weather’s not good. Also, make sure all repairs have been complete prior to taking photos.”
Preempt the Inspection
“Before a sale is finalized, most buyers will have your home inspected,” said Professional Organizer Ginny Underwood. “The inspector will find every item that is not working or in poor repair, preempt this by fixing these items before you put the house on the market. Touch up peeling paint, adjust cupboard doors and drawers so that they open and close properly, service your heating and air conditioning, Polish wood and tiled floors. Replace damaged grout and sealant around baths and showers.”
Get a Pre-Inspection
“Most real estate transactions that fall apart either get hung up on financing, or on the inspection,” said Donovan. “Knowing exactly what will come up when your buyer does their inspection can be very valuable. Talk to your agent about this one, as you will often be required to disclose the results of your inspection to buyers. However, they are likely to get their own inspection anyways, and it’s better to have this information up front when negotiating than get hit with it later.”
Develop a Marketing Plan
“Ask your agent how they will be marketing the property, what publications, what web sites, etc.,” said Scherman. “If the property stays on the market for a longer duration than expected, what will be there course of action? What new marketing plan will he/she implement?”
Hire a Staging Company
“Perspective buyers need to imagine themselves living in your home and this concept has seen the birth of a strategy called home staging,” said Underwood. “It is effective and has advantages for both the buyer and the seller.”
For more about staging your home for a sale, visit this blog tomorrow.