Wednesday, December 9, 2009

My House Won't Sell!?!? Help!

As a real estate agent everyone wants to know, "Are you selling any houses? How is the market? Is it really bad?" I can only speak for my area of the world but it really isn't bad, thank goodness. Tennessee slowed down significantly, but it is starting to pick up again. It's still not what it was 5 years ago - but if I had to guess, it won't be like that again for another 50 years.

But, if you are selling your house (or thinking about it) here are 2 things you absolutely must ask yourself:
  1. Am I really wanting to sell right now - Am I willing to do whatever it takes?
  2. What will make my house sell in a quick or reasonable amount of time?
So many homeowners are aware of the current economy, are wanting to sell, but don't seem to want to back off the price of their home or put an effort into making it sell.

The number one rule in real estate is: the market sets the price of your home if you really want to sell it, not you. (aka: if it's priced right and in a good location it will sell. It may not sell for what you want it to sell for, but it will sell at a good market price.)

Now, I know this might be hard to understand. You bought the home for 'x' amount, you upgraded the appliances and knocked down walls and put in flowers and your baby took her first steps over there....and the list can go on and on. But the bottom line is that the location, market, renovations, and buyers desire will sell your house.

Please note that I said 'sell your house' not home. One of the biggest things home seller's have to really understand is that I can't sell your home. I can't sell a home with the mantel covered in your family pictures and your kids drawings on the walls. Home buyer's want to envision themselves in the house, not your home.

That is why in the last few years home staging has really taken off. So, what is home staging? Home staging is essentially having a interior designer or organizer come into your home and help you make your 'home' a house again. Usually 'stager's' are certified and have the title of 'Home Staging Professional'.

If you feel that you can handle the responsibility on your own, and that you really can take down all the family pictures, drawings, put away board games and toys then here are a few ideas to take into consideration when staging your home to sell it.

1. The exterior - make sure your landscape and keep the lawn mowed. Think about bright colors like yellow or orange to help make your house pop. Also, keep fresh pots of plants by the doors and doormats down. Don't forget to wash your windows/exterior as well

2. The living areas - make sure to remove all family photos and other heirlooms that are related closely to you, but may not bring the same sense to a visitor trying to see themselves in the house. Choose warm paint colors like beige, or softer colors like green, blue or brown are perfect as well. Remove excess furniture and clear shelves of knick-knacks

3. The kitchen - upgrade, upgrade, upgrade. Everything if possible - from granite counter tops to silver or black appliances. Also, make it so clean it sparkles. Make sure the lights are on for extra effect. If your kitchen and living room are connected, make sure the paint colors match. This will make the room flow together better, and make it look larger.

4. The bathrooms - clean, bright, and luxurious. Upgrade the fixtures to something more elegant or modern. Make sure your shower doors are clean - replace the glass or other door if it even remotely looks gross. If you have the budget - double vanities or stand alone units are very popular with buyers.

Selling your home is going to take time and patience. But if you really want to sell your home, try out these simple ideas - add some fresh paint and see what can happen. For further resources on home staging or real estate please contact me!


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