In the previous blog post, How to Research and Prepare for the Home Buying Process, we touched on the intimidation and overwhelm that can be felt when buying a home. This week, let’s address the stress of the home selling process.
Buying a home or selling a home, both processes are stressful. But just like the home buying process, the home selling process can be less stressful, too. Here are six steps for sellers that will help to reduce some of that stress.
Reducing the Stress of the Home Selling Process
If you’re stressing over the sale of your home, follow these simple steps:
Disclose, disclose, disclose
If you’ve lived in your home for a few years, you’ve likely had to deal with a few issues. Chimney fires, water damage, and water in the basement are a few examples of issues that should be disclosed. Did you add a sump pump or a French drain while living in your home? Disclose every problem you have had and how you solved each one:
- Explain in detail the issues and how you fixed them
- Take before and after pictures
- Save receipts
Find out how your home looks online
Google your address. All buyers are online these days in their search for a new home. Maybe you added a deck or awnings recently. Recent improvements made to your home may not show up on Google Maps’ street view. Flag those updates.
What value does Google estimate your listing to be worth? Is Google’s value of your listing different from your asking price? Your listing may have more bedrooms now than it did when you bought it years ago. Sometimes tax records don’t have updated information which reflects in the value Google lists for your property. If there is a difference, you can fix it without much difficulty.
Make a good first impression
Fix minor repairs. An improperly working doorbell, for example, can cost you a sale. From curb to front door, a home that is well-maintained shows prospective buyers that you have taken good care of it. Prospective buyers appreciate a home that is well-maintained. To them, it is move-in ready and won’t cost them much to fix up and settle into.
Deep-clean inside and out
Nothing is safe from the eye of prospective buyers. They will look inside drawers, cabinets, closets, dishwasher, oven, and refrigerator. to even the dishwasher. Windows, window sills, doors, and baseboards should be free of grunge. Whether you choose to hire a cleaning service or deep-clean your home yourself, the time and money spent will return to you in your sales price.
Be specific about what stays and what doesn’t
Some contracts spell out exactly what is included with the sale of a home. Others are vague. Even though a contract states “appliances included in the sale,” some sellers have replaced their high-end appliances with low-end models. If the refrigerator, oven, dishwasher and microwave are included with the sale of your home, list the make, model, and the serial number of each.
The same goes for what isn’t included. If the refrigerator in the garage isn’t staying, say so, in writing. If items such custom window treatments aren’t included, let your agent know right up front. Legally anything bolted to the wall or ceiling goes to the buyer unless specifically excluded in the contract.
If you plan to take something with you, document it in all print and online marketing materials. There should be no doubt in the buyer’s mind what stays and what goes. Read “5. Fixtures and Appliances” in 7 Must-Have Real Estate Contract Conditions for more information on this topic.
Stage your home
Take a good look at your house. What do you see? Would you want to buy your house? If you see things that need fixing, like paint touchups, fix them.
But what if you can’t really see your house? Clear the clutter out, and hire a home stager to help you prepare your house for touring. Trust what they tell you to do, and do it. Once your home is staged, keep it that way. It’s inconvenient and challenging to live in a staged home, but it’s worth it. A staged home will help your home sell faster and for more money, and it will help you keep your home show-ready, too.
Like the home buying process, the home selling process is stressful, too, but these six steps can minimize the stress. Get great help right from the start. Hire the right real estate agent. Contact Charles D’Alessandro at (718) 253-9600 ext. 206 or email [email protected]. With over 30 years of real estate experience in Brooklyn, you can trust Charles D’Alessandro, your Brooklyn real estate agent with Fillmore Real Estate to sell your home today.