Preparing to Sell Your Home

It’s spring in Idaho and often that is associated with a great time for real estate. Are you thinking about putting your house on the market? The buyers are out there right now. This is the time to appreciate the true beauty of the northwest! So, what should you be doing if you are wanting to sell at this time of year?

The benefit to selling at this time of year is that there are generally more buyers out. The disadvantage is that there is a generally a higher inventory of houses for the buyers to choose from. This disadvantage can easily be overcome, and made into an advantage if you, as the seller, address two different issues. What are these, you ask? Well, let me tell you!

If you want to sell your house in a timely manner, before you put it in the market you need to take time to clean things up. Touch up paint in rooms, get your carpets cleaned, declutter and make it a little less personal and more appealing to the general public.

Here is a listing we currently have. See the this family room before. It is clean and neat. It isn’t even really cluttered, but it can remain personalized and still remove some distractions.



How about the study?



This time of year, one of the biggest areas to make sure has an extra special touch is the outside. What is your curb appeal? Does a potential buyer drive up to your house and think, “I can’t wait to look inside!” or do they think, “Well, it can’t get much worse.” Clean up your yard, add some flowers to the flower beds, do the weeding, make sure you don’t have a bunch of yard toys blocking a path to the front door. Make it look inviting! It doesn’t have to be fancy, it just has to be inviting!

Here’s a look at the back patio.


It’s spring, don’t you want people to know they can use it?


If you have a lot of personal treasures, perhaps you should consider having someone come and give you a little objective help. Do you have a friend who has an eye for décor that’s willing to be honest? Ask them to come over for a bit and then be sure to thank them with some cookies! Or, there are home stagers in the area that will consult and give you ideas for a reasonable fee, and for a little more they will even do all the work for you!

It’s hard for a seller to do these things sometimes, because it starts to “feel” like the house is no longer your “home.” But, remember, this is what you want, right? You are wanting to sell and make a NEW HOUSE your NEW HOME. If you want a potential buyer to come in and buy your house, you want them to be able to imagine their things in your space, not be overwhelmed by your belongings.  You want a buyer to walk out and say, “That was the house with the spacious living room,” not “That was the house with all those pictures on the walls.” How can a buyer make it theirs?

Now that you’ve spent some time making it buyer ready, what next?

So, you’ve just sat down with your REALTOR and they have given you a market analysis of your property. You have discovered that there are currently 20 other homes listed in the price range that you were thinking. That’s a lot of competition! What do we do now?

The next step is pricing! You can go up against 20 other houses and win the price war, if you price the property to sell. Take a look at some of your competition (even if it is on paper). Be objective (I know -  you have THE BEST lot, with THE BEST features, and THE BEST floor plan!). Just because you appreciate many specific things about your property, these things are often not appreciated until one has lived in it and will not be seen by potential buyers walking through the first time. There has to be perceived value from the get go. You want them to remember it and come back and MAKE AN OFFER!

Your goal should be to be in the top three of those 20 properties. Sometimes this may mean pricing it a little lower than you originally thought. I know, it can be painful.  But, having a property on the market for months and months and months is painful (not to mention having to keep it spotless for months on end for that possible showing). And, in the end you chase the market and are always changing your price “just” too late. Price it to sell from the beginning and your selling process is much smoother.

The result… you get an offer and it’s closer to your asking price and you get to move on to your next housing venture.

So, if you want to sell, especially during the “busy season” your two take away tips: clean it up and price it right! (I know, shocking!)

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