If you are selling your Windsor house this year, the news is encouraging. We are seeing a much healthier market than we have in the six or seven years. It’s very good news, but we are still far from where we were before the real estate bust. But again, sellers are seeing their home values inch up, buyers are moving quickly to secure low interest rates and homes are not sitting on the market as long.
If you are putting your home up for sale, it is imperative that you educate yourself and follow the steps below to make sure your home is well exposed. You need a solid marketing plan, a home free of repairs and is available for showings. Let’s take it step by step:
1. Marketing Plan
Home selling has changed. When I started in the business, you advertised in the local paper and put a “For Sale” sign in the front yard. We had numerous open houses but all of that has changed now. You need to target your home to specific buyers in a well thought out plan that includes social media. Yes, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and YouTube are highly effective in getting the word out. The Internet is the most valuable tool we have in the real estate industry and it’s imperative that it be used consistently.
2. Price Your Home Correctly
Let’s face it, if you overprice your home, it’s going to sit there. Despite all of the improvements you have made, the repairs that you have fixed and the cleaning you have done over the past several weeks, none of that matters if your house isn’t priced right. The first 30 days are critical in selling your home as that is when interest from buyers and agents will be at its highest. After that, buyers won’t pay attention and you will have the unenviable reputation of owning a house that is overpriced. It takes research and some time to come up with the right price, but it’s necessary.
3. Make All Repairs
You have heard this a dozen times from me, but a buyer that walks into a home and sees a leaky faucet, a broken door handle or a malfunctioning stove, will wonder what else is wrong with the property. Take care of the repairs from the beginning, In fact, get a home inspection prior to lisiting your home, make necessary repairs and make the report available for prospective buyers. It’s a valuable sales tool.
4. Use Professional Sales Materials
Don’t take inferior photos of your property then slap it on the Internet. Buyers want to see clear, professional photos, good and informative virtual tours and a strong Internet presence. Remember, 90 percent of buyers start their search online and cross off anything that doesn’t grab their attention almost immediately. Attention span is short, so make sure buyers are impressed with what they see so they make an appointment to view your home.
5. Make Your Home Available
Don’t make your property difficult to show. Properties that insist on appointments mean that buyers can’t view your home quickly. Make sure that your home is always ready, clean and spotless for buyers. It’s often those spontaneous showings that result in sales. Remember, the more a property is shown, the quicker it will sale. Also, homes that have pets running around, or not tidy and unprepared for buyers will gain a bad reputation among real estate agents. We don’t like to show homes that are difficult as there are too many other good properties out there. Not only that, our clients don’t want us to waste their time.
6. Hire a Good Real Estate Agent
If you want to sell at top dollar, then hire the best and most reputable real estate agent you can. If you think you can save money by selling your home yourself, you may want to think again. Good agents have excellent marketing programs, can price your home correctly, have a strong Internet web site and work closely with other agents to find the right buyer for your home. Interview three agents in your area. Ask friends, co-workers and family members for their recommendations and ask specific questions on how they will sell your home.
7. When Home Sells Honor Contract
Sellers that respond to repairs discovered in the inspection process, and stay on top of the transactions and paperwork, mean the house will close on time (provided buyer does the same). As you well know, selling your home is one of the most important financial contracts you will ever sign so make sure that you follow your end of the deal.