When it came time to sell my house, I was not really prepared for the experience. By the time the house sold, I knew all about staging and making quick fixes that had a strong impact on the appearance of the home. We buy houses Augusta and I also found out how to price the house for sale. So the bottom line is that you have to do some work on the house and also do your homework before putting your house up on the market. There are some guidelines you can follow to attract a good buyer and make the whole process as painless as possible.
Try to see your house as a potential buyer will see it. In my case, I set a budget and made some easy fixes, like giving the living room a new coat of paint, refinishing the hardwood floorsin the dining room and making sure the faucets and toilets all worked as they should. My husband made sure the gutters were in good repair, he patched the driveway and walkways, and he trimmed the trees and bushes. Our real estate agent gave us some advice about what makes sense to do to fix up the house when we were ready to sell.
Once you have made all the necessary minor repairs, clear the house of clutter and personal items, even if this means putting things in boxes and storing them in the garage. The real estate agent put it in perspective. She said that since we would be moving, we should think of decluttering as getting an early start on packing. The next step is to “stage” your house to grab the buyer emotionally. Staging can send subtle positive messages and allow the buyer to envision herself in your home. We put a new welcome mat outside, and placed large pots of colorful flowers on either side to make the can make the entry inviting. Inside, I tried to give the house a homey feel with the aroma of baked apples as soon as buyers walked in. I set the dining room table with formal linen and placed candles, bath products and fluffy towels in the bathroom. I also removed some furniture to make the rooms look larger.
If you want to sell your house within a reasonably short amount of time, price it to sell. You may want to give yourself a little cushion for negotiating, but be aware of what similar houses are selling for in your neighborhood. Our real estate agent brought information on comparisons or “comps” so we could see how our house stacked up against the competition. We were able to see how much homes like ours were selling for. We made sure that the comp list was complete and current, and we looked at the price the home fetched at sale, not at the listing price. After all, people can ask for anything, but it is what they actually got for the house that counts. Of course, comparable homes may not be identical to yours, so add or subtract a few thousand dollars for amenities like a fireplace or outdoor deck.