One of the most frequent questions I hear is, “What should I do to fix my home up to sell?” My answer is simple, but the application is a bit more involved: remove the “objections”! Objections are excuses buyers find not to buy a particular home.
It’s not that scary a prospect, though. Of course, you could completely remodel your home with granite and stainless steel, new doors, crown molding, etc., but if you aren’t planning to stay a while to enjoy the results, it may not be worth the upheaval and expense.
Some of the “objections” that buyers find these days:
- Lack of air-conditioning
- Single-pane windows
- Worn or discolored flooring
- Tired interior paint or peeling exterior paint
- Old, old, old and/or worn kitchen counters
- Runaway landscaping
There are some simple fixes for these issues. Lack of air-conditioning can be solved by getting a contractor’s bid and offering that amount as a credit to the buyer—right up front, in the listing—and adjusting the price accordingly. Single-pane windows are not always a deal-breaker and can be compensated for by other extra-special features. Floorcoverings are easy to repair, an inconvenient yet worthwhile expense, and the carpet companies will move furniture for you. Painting is very important; however, I’ve found that Mr. Clean Magic Erasers can actually eliminate the need for it in some cases. Be sure the exterior of the home is free of cobwebs and debris—a good hosing or power wash can make it look almost new. Kitchen counters can be replaced very inexpensively with granite veneers or modern-patterned Formica; you don’t even need new cabinets as long as they look fresh. It’s not expensive to have those cabinets painted if the finish is worn. Manicuring the front and back yards is essential; the landscaping can be minimal and tired (or nonexistent), but it must be neat and not overgrown. A professional housecleaning (including windows) to make the home sparkle is the finishing touch. All the improvements must be considered together as pieces of the whole because once you start making them the areas you don’t improve can look less appealing in contrast.
If you’d like my opinion on improvements you’re considering or if you need referrals to contractors (I get no referral fees or gifts from them), just give me a call. As a real estate broker and state-certified appraiser, I can help you remove the “objections”!