Life has changed, and you’re getting ready to sell your home.
We know it’s probably not an easy decision to make, but sometimes it’s the only decision.
- Maybe you’re relocating for a job.
- Welcoming a family member and need more space.
- Kids are grown and you need less space.
- Or, you’ve realized that you finally have the equity that you were counting on, to move up to the next phase in life.
Whatever the reason is… you have to put the house on the market soon, and that’s NOT easy to do!
It doesn’t matter how often you clean, or how organized you feel, you’re facing a couple days (or weeks) or overhauling every room in order to get top dollar for your home.
Don’t get me wrong, if you want to throw the house on the market without touching a thing, that’s your business… people do it every day, there’s no rule against it. But in this situation, you’re more interested in ensuring you get every dime you can, and you’re willing to put in a little work to make sure you get it.
Emotions can run high during this time. Not only are you emotionally attached to the home, but most likely, you’re even more attached to how the home feels. The placement of your family photos, the succulents hanging in the corner, even the junk sitting all over the junk counter or table… you know we all have one. It all makes the house feel like your home. Your home is warm and inviting and has so much character and charm.
Home is where you relax after a long day. It’s where you celebrate the birthday parties, the anniversaries, even the super bowl or the Netflix watch parties.
The problem with your home is…. it’s YOUR home.
In order to truly make your home feel like the ideal home for someone else, is to give them the opportunity to feel at home, and quite frankly, not everyone can do that with Fido’s toys all over the house.
Getting top dollar is all about strategy and psychology.
You only get one chance to make a first impression when selling your home, so you want to make sure it’s the right impression.
Curb appeal is HUGE!
Don’t let anyone tell you that curb appeal isn’t important. The buyer is going to pull up in front of the home and instantly start making decisions. We hear it all the time… Comments on the front door, the paint colors, the trees out front, even the neighbors house.
The mood is set before the buyer gets out of the car.
Since they often park right out front, on the street, it’s important to experience the walk up to the front door, from their perspective.
Maybe you weren’t the green thumb, so all you have in the yard is rocks. Now is the time to take the chance on those Home Depot garden sales… plant something with color. If they die… plant another.
Does the front door need a fresh coat of paint? Remember, the buyers attention is on that front entry way for a few minutes while the agent collects the key and struggles to open the door.
Paint the front door. Keep the front entry clean and clear of leaves and cob webs. Put out a fresh mat. Oil the locks to make sure the key works well. (Most people come and go through the garage… but the buyers first impression of how your home was maintained, is on the front lock.
Once the buyer walks into the front door, you have about 15 seconds to win them over. That’s about how long it takes for your home to be judged.
The truth is, your emotional attachment to the home will be felt instantly. If it doesn’t ‘feel’ right to the buyer, they usually know instantly.
The best way to get over this first impression hurdle is to remove the emotions from your home.
View your home as a potential buyer.
When you walk in, does the space have a good flow or is it set up eat dinner in front of the TV? Are there photos on the wall, and surfaces? All of these things will pull the eye of the buyer and distract from the thing that they’re there to see… the house!
Before you list your home…
The best thing to do before you list your home is to take a tour of new home builders in the area, or contact your agent about getting in to see the active competition. See how they’ve presented their own home, and take note on how each home made you feel walking in. You’ll quickly see that ‘feeling’ we tell you about.
Ultimately, when you walk into the door of your home… it should feel warm and inviting… but without any indication that someone has lived there. I know that sounds horrible…. But that’s how you get top dollar.
Take a deep breath. This is no longer your home. This is simply a house that you’re staying in for a minute more.
The less attached you are to the emotional tug of the home… the better you’ll be able to stage it and move on to the next phase in your life.