Have your home on the market or thinking about putting on there?

In today’s real estate world (especially given the financial climate of recent years), selling your home can oftentimes come down to the right timing.

That said that timing can be thrown off if you truly do not have your home in the condition it needs to be for a sale to take place.

You might think that a messy room here or there, a little paint peeling off the walls, a dirty carpet etc. won’t mean much to prospective buyers. If that is your mindset, think again.

Do an Inventory of Your Home

So that you can have your home in stellar shape prior to listing it for sale, remember to do the following:

  1. Outside maintenance – Is the outside of your home a ticking time-bomb? Issues such as weeds, high grass, bushes and trees that haven’t had attention for many months, major cracks in the driveway, a home that looks in dire need of a fresh coat of paint etc. can all spell trouble. Yes, you’re likely watching your dollars closely as you try and unload your home, but spending the necessary money to have it in “selling shape” is not a choice, it is a necessity. Go all around the outside of your property and see what might need the most attention. In doing so, you can put a plan in place to get the outside ship-shape before any potential buyers set foot on your property;
  2. Inside maintenance – As important as the outside of your home is, the inside certainly can’t be overlooked. Maintaining the proper look inside your home prior to listing it should be a high priority too. Maybe the home needs new carpeting before going on the market? Does the kitchen need a fresh coat of paint? Maybe easy bathroom updates should be on the agenda? No matter what the project or projects may be, do your best to fulfill them before putting your home up for sale. Yes, you may get an interested buyer or two that would be willing to do a project or projects themselves if you lower the asking price (see more below). Still, in order to get the top dollar for your residence, having it looking sparkling before it is ever listed is the way to go;
  3. Showing a winner – As great as the outside and inside conditions of the house may be when it comes to lawncare, painting, siding, carpeting, it may be the simply necessity of having the home as clean as possible that will prevent you from selling it sooner rather than later. Sometimes all a house needs, especially the kitchen where so much time and energy are spent, is a good cleaning. For those sellers with children in the home, having it as clean as possible before the first prospective buyer sets foot in the house is critical. Yes, those looking to buy should not expect they are walking into a museum when they enter your home, but you also can’t expect them to be overly excited about the residence if it looks like a tornado hit. If need be, have professionals come in and give the residence a thorough cleaning from ceiling to floor. This way, the home will better present itself to potential buyers. Lastly, if you have an animal or animals, make sure to clean up after them as much as possible. Animal hair in the kitchen or all over the bedroom will not be a big selling point;
  4. Negotiations matter – Finally, are you a good negotiator? It may come down to a little bit of friendly haggling over what might need to still be done in the home and what the final asking prices turns out to be. If you have a little flexibility in selling your home, then you may be less inclined to lower the sale price. On the other hand, if you need to get out of your home rather soon, perhaps you have a new residence being built or need to move into one sooner rather than later, timing could be everything. In that case, you may not be able to negotiate quite the final price you want. Either way, always leave the door open to some negotiations, some of which could benefit your wallet when all is said and done.