The Essentials to Styling Your Home to Sell Quickly

When listing a home on the market, it’s important to do everything in your power to ensure it sells as quickly as possible. Not only will sitting on the market for a protracted period of time leave your money tied up in the home, but it can also make your property seem less appealing to prospective buyers. Here are some of the best steps you can take to make your home sell quickly.

Update Paint and Flooring

New Painted WallsMany homes that have been in the hands of the same owner for many years have slowly fallen out of date in terms of interior decor. If you want your home to sell fast, it’s important to update its appearance before listing it. Fresh paint and new flooring will be relatively inexpensive, but they will make your home much more appealing to potential buyers. Look through some home magazines to get a sense of what the preferred styles are at the moment, as these will typically be what buyers are looking for.

Arrange Rooms to Create the Illusion of More Space

Some homeowners, especially those who sell without the help of an agent, make the mistake of showing their homes with the furniture arranged as it usually is. While this may be the most comfortable arrangement of furniture you have found, it probably isn’t the best for styling a home to sell. Try rearranging the furniture and decor in your living spaces to make them look larger. In your living room, for example, position couches or loveseats near the edges of the room to create a large, open space in the center, as this will make the room look larger than it actually is.

Get Your Lighting Right

As minor a matter as it may seem, home lighting plays a large role in how potential buyers will view your property. Dim, outdated lighting will make your home seem less inviting. Modern lighting that illuminates your spaces more thoroughly, on the other hand, will tend to appeal to home buyers. At the moment, bright but cool lights are very much in style.

Pay Special Attention to Your Kitchen

Because it is used multiple times every day, a home’s kitchen is one of its most important spaces. Buyers will be looking for a kitchen with modern styling, so be sure you can give it to them. This can be as simple as updating paint or wallpaper, but there are also several other steps you can take. Replacing countertops, sinks or cabinet hardware, for example, will help to improve the appearance of the space.

Enhance Your Outdoor Space

Outdoor SpaceIn the process of styling a home ahead of putting it on the market, some homeowners focus entirely on their indoor areas and ignore the outdoor elements of their properties. This is a major mistake, as the outdoor part of your property will be the first thing a buyer sees upon arriving. Make sure that your yard is well-trimmed and tastefully landscaped. You may also consider laying down fresh grass seed or fertilizer before listing your home in order to make your lawn appear fuller and healthier.

Get Photo-Ready

When a potential buyer first sees your home, chances are he or she will be looking at an online listing. If you want to make your home stand out from the pack, be sure you’re ready for a professional real estate photographer to take great pictures in your living spaces. One good way to ready your home for this process is to carefully position small decorative or accent pieces on shelves while keeping tables largely clear. Ideally, the pictures of your home should make it look friendly, inviting and livable. For this reason, it is rarely a good idea to list a home with photographs of empty rooms, as this will make it harder for buyers to visualize themselves living in it.

Focus On Your Entryway

Houses are a lot like people in that those who are seeing them for the first time form opinions very quickly based on their appearances. This is why your home’s entryway is such an important space if you want it to sell quickly. Upon entering your house, a potential buyer should form a positive impression immediately. To help this happen, you can install tile or hardwood flooring or position a table with a tasteful decor piece or two by the door. The exterior of your entrance should also be striking, with good-looking lighting fixtures and door hardware in place.

There’s never an absolute guarantee that your house will sell quickly, but with proper styling you can vastly increase the chances that it will. Remember as you prepare your home to look at it through the eyes of a prospective buyer, rather than as someone who has lived there for years. By understanding what a buyer will be looking for, you can style your house to appeal to the person who is hunting for a new home.

Jump to top

Tips for First-Time Home Sellers

Selling a home is more complicated than buying one. Home sellers need to balance their desire for a quick sale with a wish to get the best price for their home. Logistically, you need to deal with coordinating the purchase of a new home with the sale of the old one. Just when you are busiest with trying to juggle selling and buying and issues involved with moving and perhaps even a new job, you need to keep your home spotlessly clean and uncluttered for showings. The tips below will help you sell your house successfully, minimizing the stress involved and leading to a timely sale at a good price.

Get OrganizedOrganize

To avoid getting overwhelmed and perhaps missing some crucial task or piece of paperwork, you need to keep good records and an up-to-date to-do list on which you write down every task that needs to be done, the time by which it must be finished, and the person responsible for it. Schedule a regular time every evening to review the list with your family and make sure everything is on track.

Pricing to Sell

You’ll be working closely with your agent to set a realistic asking price for your house. Although the key to pricing is looking at previous data on sales of comparable houses, you should also visit nearby open houses to get a sense of the competition. Don’t be fooled by asking prices. Anyone can ask a fortune for a dump, but that doesn’t mean a buyer will pay that much. Price realistically in terms of what buyers have actually paid for houses of roughly the same size in the same neighborhood. You don’t need to price a house under market value either, as that may cause buyers to wonder what is wrong with it. Instead, aim for a price similar to comparable properties.

Prepare to Move

Before you put your house on the market, you should do the groundwork for moving out of it. Some potential buyers want to close quickly and you don’t want to lose a potential sale because you aren’t ready to move out. This means two things. First, you should begin looking for a new house before the listing of your old one goes live. Second, you should start preparing to move by donating things you don’t intend to keep to charity and organizing remaining items to make packing go more smoothly when you need to do it.

Create Curb Appeal

You only have a few seconds to create a good impression with a potential buyer. This means that your house should look great from the outside. Pressure washing will make the exterior of your house and your driveway sparkle. Keep the lawn neatly mowed, leaves raked, or snow shoveled, as buyers may request showings on short notice. Brighten up the front landscaping with colorful flowers in summer or cheerful evergreens with bright berries in winter. If you have a busy schedule, consider hiring a service to keep your yard in pristine condition while it’s on the market.

Repair Minor Issues

If you have been living in a home for several years, it won’t be in pristine condition. There may be stains on the carpet, scuffs on wood floors, scratches on counter tops, or chips in the paint. Although you may not want to invest large amounts of money in a house you will soon be leaving, the more minor issues you can fix, the easier it will be to sell the house. Steam cleaning carpets, polishing floors, touching up minor scuffs and scrapes, and replacing grout and caulking can make a house look newer and “move-in ready”, things that will appeal to buyers.

Cleaning to Sell

Cleanliness takes on a whole new meaning when you are trying to sell a house. It’s no longer just about sanitation. What matters is that things shine and sparkle to create a “new house” feel. Start by having the interiors and exteriors of all your windows cleaned. Next, clean drapes, blinds, and moldings. Carpets should be vacuumed, tile mopped, and wood polished. Mirrors, counter tops, appliance surfaces, door handles, switch and outlet covers, and fixtures should be spotless. Wash all bedding and use cedar blocks to freshen your closets. Many experts recommend hiring a cleaning service to do a one-time deep clean the day before your house goes on the market. If you are really busy, consider scheduling a professional cleaner to come in once a week to keep your house spotless.

Smells Don’t Sell

Smell matters as much as appearance. Pet odors, mildew, or other scents can drive off buyers. Don’t use air fresheners, plug-ins, candles, or scented potpourri as many people may find those objectionable. Clean with baking soda to reduce odors. Run lemon or orange peel through a disposal to reduce odors and consider a colorless bleach tank drop in for toilets. Use cleaning products with a light citrus scent. After cleaning, open up all the doors and windows to air out the house; nothing smells as fresh as real fresh air. Freshen up linen closets with cedar blocks or odor absorbents. For persistent smells, consider buying or renting an ozone machine.

Declutter

Your final step in getting ready for your first showings is decluttering. The less stuff you have in the house, the more open and spacious it will appear. Removing personal touches will also help buyers imagine how the house will look with their own personal items in place. Clear off counter tops and banish personal collections and mementos to the garage or a storage unit.

You are not alone as a house seller. Your agent is an expert who has helped many home sellers in the past and can provide advice through every step of the selling process. The more closely you work with your agent, the more smoothly the selling process will go.

 

How to decorate for the holidays when your home is for sale

The holidays are a time to deck the halls and celebrate the ones you love, but what to do when the “home for sale” sign is up and you have to keep up appropriate appearances? Contrary to what many may think, the holidays are actually a wonderful time to warmly invite potential buyers in and show off your home’s most attractive features. It may take some careful planning and paring down, but with thoughtful effort you can turn the holidays into your home’s best selling point! ┬áHere are some simple tips for decorating your home while it’s on the market during the holiday season.

1. Remember That Less Is More:

When staging a house for sale it’s always advised to err on the side of elegance, rather than clutter. While the cheerful bustle and chaos of the holidays are usually welcome additions in the home, you may have to reduce the clutter and stick to carefully selected ornaments and heirloom items that highlight your home’s most beloved accents. Be wary of putting up religious-themed decorations, as these may be off-putting to potential buyers, and be mindful of distracting knick-knacks.

2. Make Use Of The Winter Greenery:Christmas Greenery

Evergreen wreaths, pine cone centerpieces, and garlands tied with bright red ribbons make for time-honored and universally appealing holiday decor, and are as easy to acquire as they are lovely. Front doors, stairway banisters, fireplace mantles, and even mailboxes can benefit from a little holiday sprucing up (no pun intended), and will instantly brighten your home’s appearance.

3. Stick To A Palette:

A great rule of thumb when decorating your home for sale is to note the interior color schemes and decorate within those hues and textures. For example, if your living room is mostly white try to select appropriate ornaments and accent pieces in colors that will blend and compliment, such as golds and silvers. For more eclectic rooms stick with classic cranberry and forest green tones, always keeping mind the less-is-more mantra.

4. Avoid Colorful Lights, And Keep Them Classy:

Let’s face it, few things are more fun than festooning one’s house with lights that twinkle in all colors of the rainbow. But when looking to decorate for the holidays it’s generally best to implement simple white lights and string them with an eye for drawing attention to particularly attractive architectural highlights or specific points of interest. Additionally, make sure you string your lights evenly, following a clean and discernible pattern. Keep lawn ornaments at a minimum, and always make sure the holiday lights are on and in working order when the house is being shown.

5. To Tree Or Not To Tree:

Christmas trees are the centerpieces of the holiday home, and few would dream of forgoing them even when showing off a home for sale. The good news is you can certainly enjoy your favorite holiday tradition, so long as you stick to a few easy–but necessary–guidelines. Just as you want to decorate within a room’s color scheme, it’s also best to select a tree that suits the room’s space in similar fashion. Try to stay away from gaudy tree ornaments, loud or mismatched garlands, and multi-colored lights, opting instead for a specific theme (silver and gold, red and gold, icicle lights, Victorian bows, etc) and trimming the tree accordingly.

Cookies6. Put Out Some Holiday Treats:

Indulging in your favorite holiday goodies is arguably one of the best parts of the season, and there’s no reason you can’t share that joy with prospective buyers stopping by. Cookies, confections, nut assortments, cider, and hot chocolate are all easy and delicious items that will make your guests feel pampered and at home, which may just influence their decision in regards to buying yours! If you’re concerned about food allergies or gluten sensitivities, keep a few special recipes on hand you can whip up and add to the spread as a thoughtful touch.

7. Pay Attention To The Little Things:

Scents, sounds, and temperature all play a part in how your home influences visitors to look and leave or linger and enjoy. Try not to overwhelm the house with heavy, clashing scents a’la candles and plug-in mists, but instead opt for a pot of simmering mulled cider on the stove or single burning candle in the front hall in a subtle vanilla or evergreen scent (if you know you’ll be present, of course.) Music can similarly add or detract from the atmosphere; classical, light jazz, and of course the cherished Nutcracker Suite all lend a particularly delightful touch without overwhelming your guests’ personal tastes. Pay attention to the temperature of your home as well, as nothing is more inviting than a cozy escape from the outside chill. Keep the thermostat at a pleasantly warm temperature, and if you have a fireplace and know you’ll be present while the house is being shown invite guests to warm their hands by the fire.

There are many ways to decorate for the holidays without deterring prospective home buyers. Simple color schemes, elegant lighting, and a few hospitable touches go a long way in creating the kind of environment that encourages guests to enjoy the comforts and unique features that made your house a home.

Bring 7,000 People to Your Showing – on Facebook

Social media has certainly taken the world by storm. 10 years ago, select college students had access to the social media giant, Facebook. In 2016, more than one billion people are active on Facebook alone. Because of this internet accessibility, people use Facebook to share pictures of their families, friends and lifestyles. Facebook is also used to stay in the know regarding peers and long-lost friends and family. With so many eyeballs on one website, it only makes sense for entrepreneurs and businesses to maintain an active presence on Facebook. Building a strong brand and engaging future clients are some of the best tactics for any business to make. Within the real estate world, realtors are beginning to see the power of Facebook and how the different avenues in this portal are highly valuable. Thanks to Facebook Live, you can be like a North Carolina realtor who brought 7,000 people to her showing. There are a few ways you can create a thriving Facebook presence that brings business straight to the front step of the home you’re selling.

  1. Post Regularly

Facebook ShowingThere are tons of different pages, friends, friend requests and content grabbing the attention of the Facebook user. Because there is such an overload of content, it’s important to stand out from the crowd. One of the best ways to stand out is to make sure you post content on a regular and consistent basis. If people know when and where to find you, they’re more likely to stay engaged. Consistency is a major thing because if people see that you’re unable to commit to a posting schedule, they’ll easily move on to the next best thing. Treat your Facebook page with consistency. It’s in your best interest to do so.

  1. Create High-Quality Content

In addition to posting regularly, it’s vital to produce high-quality content. Infographics, informative YouTube videos and behind-the-scenes footage of you at work are great pieces of content to post to your page. Use discretion and make sure everything you’re sharing is professional. Make sure your pictures are clear, vivid and edited well. Make sure the graphics and information you post are consistent with your brand. Don’t mix your personal life with your Facebook page. Create a great logo and find colors that can be interspersed throughout your branding. These techniques help you with visibility and continuity.

  1. Greet and Invite People

If you plan on doing a Facebook Live showing or event, announce it in advance. When you announce it in advance, you’re more likely to get more people to tune in. Once you’re live, make sure to greet people as they come in. Give people a few minutes to get logged in before you start a home showing or share information. Once people are logged in, don’t be shy about asking people to share the broadcast with their followers. The more your broadcast gets shared and viewed, the better off you are.

  1. Create Good Title and Description

Facebook is one of the best marketing portals to take advantage of, and you can start using it without any cost. It doesn’t get any better than free publicity. Knowing this, it is very important to remain intentional about the names of your videos and the description you give. When you give this information, it gives users a better understanding of what they’re getting into. Use proper hashtags so that your content shows up in the Facebook search engine. If people are looking for a home in your area, they should be able to place the city name, along with keywords involving real estate and find your content. Be discoverable. Even though Facebook might seem daunting because of the one billion people on this platform, it’s actually easy to dominate once you remain consistent in these areas.

If you are intentionally creative and captivating in your execution and delivery of your content, you’ll easily and consistently attract new clients to your business. Before long, clients turn into dollar signs. Dollar signs become profit and you’ll be celebrating all the way to the bank!