Prepare Now To Sell Later
Sell Your Home When The Time Is Right For You
It’s no surprise that many people advocate that the best time to sell a home is in the Spring. Part of the reason this theory has evolved is that families want to be established in their new homes by the beginning of the school year in September. While this does make sense for families with children, when it comes to when to put your home on the market there are no one-size fits all scenarios.
Even though Spring may be considered prime time for home sales by many in the industry, there is no perfect time for everyone. Every situation is different, and when you are personally ready to sell, that becomes the best season for you. However, there is one piece of home-selling wisdom that is always true no matter what time of year you sell.
Can you guess that one sliver of home-selling wisdom? It’s the preparation of your home to look its best in winter, spring, summer or fall. Making an outstanding first impression on buyers will determine how quickly you sell and how high a price you obtain. A home that is move-in ready will face a cleaner offer with fewer if any contingencies. Even in this strong seller’s market, we find ourselves in right now, the condition and appearance of your home do matter.
It makes the most sense to take the time to get your home in tip-top shape for the fussiest of fussy buyers. If you think your house is nearly market ready and only needs some decluttering and a deep cleaning that’s great. If on the other hand, you are a homeowner that knows your family nest could use some feathering, here is a quick list to get you started on your project.
The Kitchen – Deal Maker or Deal Breaker
Updated kitchens are right at the top of the list for potential home buyers. A new kitchen can make your home irresistible. If you have an older kitchen, does that mean you should forge ahead and replace it with a $40,000 renovation? It depends on the value of your home. For most sellers, the answer would be an emphatic no. But you can update an older kitchen with good bones for a fraction of that cost if you are inclined to do most of the work yourself. Your listening now aren’t you? Here are some suggestions.
Paint the Cabinets
You would be surprised at how much newer dingy, old cabinets will look when you paint. Colors that are popular right now are white, grey, dark blue and black. A trendy look at the moment is darker base cabinets with white on the uppers. Also white or light grey cabinets with a darker color on the island. You would be surprised at the décor drama this looks creates.
If you have little or no experience painting cabinets, There are no shortage of online videos and articles to guide you. Now you have no excuses. Need some inspiration Check out these impressive kitchen make-overs and prepare to be inspired!
Other updates that might increase your home’s resale value include pull out shelving in the cabinets, new countertops, sink and faucet, a tile backsplash, and updated kitchen cabinet hardware. You should also consider replacing the appliances that are at the end of their life cycle. If you have old vinyl flooring, manufactured wood or laminate on the floor would be a good option for replacement. Also if you have old lighting, updating those to modern ones with LED bulbs are a big plus. Last but not least, don’t forget a fresh coat of neutral color paint on the walls.
Other than the new countertop, these other upgrades are subjects for DIY projects. Even installing ceramic tile is not that difficult these days. If you are still intimidated, consider self-adhesive tile options instead.
Newer bathrooms make buyers smile. You can follow the suggestions for the kitchen above as a guideline for the bath. Paint your vanity or replace it. Update the countertop, faucets and cabinet hardware. Consider a new mirror or above the sink cabinet. Update old lighting. A new shower head is a good investment as well. Fresh paint, new towel and paper holders, a refresh of the flooring, a new toilet seat and shower curtain adds the finishing touches! I have personally found many great options for updating on a budget at my local IKEA. Your welcome!
Ceilings Above, Floors Below, and Walls Around
Buyers are going to look up, down and all around. Make them happy with what they see. Refresh the ceilings with a fresh coat of white paint. If you have popcorn ceilings, consider removing them if you have the time because they are very unpopular. Repair all the holes in the wall and give them a fresh coat of a neutral paint color like white or gray. If you go for white, you cannot go wrong with Decorator White by Benjamin Moore. Don’t forget to update the woodwork as well. Replace all the receptacles and light plates. It’s a minimal investment that ups your game. If you have relatively new carpeting, have it professionally cleaned before you sell. If it’s old, consider replacing it with wood or laminate floors. If your current home has hardwood floors under carpet, rip that carpet out and have the floors refinished if necessary. For many of today’s younger home buyers, carpeting is a deal breaker.
Regular Upkeep and Maintenance
Many buyers want a home that is move-in ready for the first year. Make sure you have your furnace cleaned and serviced before you put your house on the market. Second that for the air conditioner. Call the chimney sweep if you have a fireplace. Clean the gutters. Give your siding the benefit of a power wash. Spruce up your front door with some paint. Inspect the roof for shingles that need attention. Replace any cracked panes of window glass. Don’t forget about curb appeal. Here is an earlier post on curb appeal with some excellent tips to take yours to the next level.
It can be difficult to choose how you allocate your time and money. Factors like your neighborhood, your price range, the amenities of other homes at your price range, as well as the condition and age of your home all come into play. If you are confused or feel some professional guidance might go a long way you may be right. Even if you are not quite at the point where you are ready for the For Sale sign to go up, a realtor’s advice will be invaluable. He can tell you how much your home is worth and advise you on what updates you should prioritize to make the most profit when you sell.
If you have questions or need some direction before you begin, don't hesitate to reach out to me.
As always, thanks for reading.