How I Sold My Home Fast With Five Tips From My Realtor
When I recently sold my home, my Realtor pointed out inexpensive improvements for me to do. This is a review of what I did that helped me quickly sell my house.
What Buyers Want
Homebuyers are always looking for a nice clean place where it's obvious it has been taken care of over the years.
Many homes on the market are in poor condition. That makes buyers willing to spend more money when they find a gem. Homebuyers look for a nice clean place that has been taken care of over the years. They want a move-in condition so they don’t have a lot of work to do right away.
Buyers are willing to pay a premium when they see a value, and they will want to reach an agreement fast before someone else beats them to it.
Update Lighting Fixtures
The first thing my Realtor told me to do was to replace the chandelier in my dining room. She explained that a good-looking replacement is not expensive, and the investment for this would help attract buyers.
I had an outdated lighting fixture all the years I had lived there. A new one adds value to one's home.
I found a beautiful and expensive-looking chandelier at Home Depot for only $350 and installed it that same day. I didn’t want to wait for anything. I knew my Realtor was ready to start showing the house. Looks great, doesn't it?
Paint All Walls a Neutral Color
One bedroom in my house had blue walls. My realtor told me to repaint it with neutral colors.
Once again I listened to her, and quickly painted it. I used Linen White for the walls and Dove White for the trim. Simple. That’s what I had used throughout the rest of the house, so it was a no-brainer, and now it all matches.
I knew it worked since neutral colors make it easy to furnish a home. You never have to worry about mismatching furniture colors with the rest of a room.
I painted it myself at a cost of around $100 for the paint and supplies.
Get Rid of Old Shabby Stuff
I had some shades on the windows in my kitchen breakfast-area that had yellowed over the years. Worn and yellowing shades create an eyesore and they distract buyers.
My Realtor explained that no shades are better than worn shades to show the house well. Simply removing those shades made the room brighter and more inviting. There was no need to replace them.
She was right-on with that suggestion too, as you can see in the picture below. I wish I had removed them earlier. I would have enjoyed many years of a nicer open view of the yard.
There was no need for shades there anyway since it was the rear of the house and I had a secluded yard.
Do Maintenance Prior to a Sale
Besides the few things my Realtor asked me to do, I had always taken very good care of everything. Throughout the years I had maintained the heating and electric systems; made minor repairs to keep up with normal wear and tear; and replaced the roof.
I even bought a new dishwasher and refrigerator shortly before selling the house. The cost of these things really comes back many times over when selling the house.
Respond Positively to a Buyer's Requests
Due to the fact that I made the minor adjustments my Realtor brought to my attention, I found it was easy to sell. The way my home showed as well maintained created a lot of interest from the buyers who were looking for a new home.
I quickly had several offers and I accepted one of them. The potential buyer had a few requests, however. That is always to be expected. People usually make an offer contingent on the seller performing certain tasks. These things tend to be simple changes that are important to them.
I recognized the feeling behind it and had no problem as long as they were reasonable requests. I know, because I made similar requests when I looked for a new home.
What Are Reasonable Buyer Requests?
My buyer asked me to replace three windows that were cloudy. They could never be cleaned since the haze was between the panes. Taking care of that was a no-brainer to sell the house.
A local glazier gave me a very reasonable quote. Since I had to wait until I knew the buyer would sign a contract, the glazier agreed to honor his quoted price later. Of course I got that agreement in writing.
The buyer also found a door that was loose on its hinges and didn’t close properly. That was actually an easy fix that I could do myself by placing longer screws through the hinges to secure them better. Even if you feel you need to call a carpenter, it’s worth this simple low-cost repair.
Buyers want to be sure that nothing is going to break after they move in. If they find something on the verge of failure, they may ask that it be replaced. If it's a small job, just do it—but only after a contract is signed. The attorneys can always add a clause to the contract stating what will be done.
I Had a Signed Sales Contract in Three Weeks!
You might say I was lucky, but as a businessman I know what works to appeal to buyers: Give them what they want.
The little things that my buyer requested were a no-brainer. I realized that if it didn't cost much, I might as well do it to hook the buyer into a purchase.
Due to the fact that I priced it right and had listened to my Realtor about the upgrades, I had a signed contract in three weeks.
When the buyer had their mortgage approved, we closed with the sale and the purchase of my new home on the same day three months later.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
© 2013 Glenn Stok