Have you ever tried to paint the outside of your home in the winter? Not a good idea! All too often, I visit with folks ready to make their move and put the home on the market. They are excited about the apartment or condo they just found, and now it is time to sell their home. However, it is February, and the home needs inside and outside improvements. Downsizing of personal property has not been started, and the interior needs several upgrades before showing the home. Improvements have been avoided because moving seemed so far off until they stumbled into this perfect new home which they don’t want to lose. The excitement has now turned into panic and all the seeds for high stress have been planted by their inaction to prepare their home for sale.
Today’s buyer wants a property that is in great condition both exterior and interior. If you’ve read my past articles, I have stressed to make sure your property does not compete with foreclosures if at all possible. Foreclosures often are homes that have been neglected due to lack of funds, and are selling at up to 70% off the top market value! Therefore, your home must be far superior to the foreclosure competing in your neighborhood. If you know you will be selling sometime in the next 5 years, begin downsizing today! As Realtors, we can begin your process of preparing your home for market by offering the services of a stager. A stager is a professional trained in not only decorating, but placing furniture and artwork to compliment new flooring and carpeting as well as choosing the right colors which are attractive to today’s buyers. There are companies that will assist you in downsizing by packing, sorting, and coordinating estate sales as well as donations.
If your home needs exterior work, do it right now, while it is still warm outside. Don’t procrastinate on exterior work, as you never know when you are going to want to move. If the work on the outside is done now, you can always do the interior improvements in any season. If paint is needed, a stager can help you pick out the right exterior paint colors for trim and siding. A stager knows what colors will attract young buyers. Expect to be a bit shocked by the colors selected, as your taste may be quite different than the colors attracting today’s 25-35 year old purchaser.
One great benefit by doing the improvements before you are actually ready to sell is the advantage of enjoying your updates while you are living in the home. Many of my sellers are agitated that they are improving their home for someone they don’t even know, and are not enjoying the new updates as they live in the home.
If you are procrastinating and fighting the new trends in today’s competitive market, know that if you improve your home, you are making an investment in your financial future. You are making sure that when you sell, it will attract substantially more money if it is found attractive by today’s buyers. They will pay a premium price for a well kept home that shows well. The money you spend today will come back to you three-fold in the future.
Most importantly, by preparing your home before you are ready to move offers you the freedom of moving at your leisure without the panic of getting the home ready for sale at the same time you make a commitment to move into a senior apartment, community or condominium. You don’t want to procrastinate and fall into a crises management mode if you can avoid that stressful situation.
Start today my calling your Realtor and having them suggest a stager they work with to visit with you in your home. Both the Realtor and stager will offer suggestions and contractors who can help you begin the process today, rather than the alternative which is stress and panic later. It is never too early to get your home ready for sale. Take that first step today by calling in the experts. You won’t regret it!