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Copyright © 2007 Wee Dilts
For A Faster Sale More Profit: Stage it.
Staging is the process of getting a house ready to sell. It is an important step; it is almost as important as pricing. Many For Sale by Owners make a mistake; they just put a sign in the yard and hope for a buyer. When you sell by owner, it takes careful preparation and planning. In this article I’ll show you how to stage the house for the market so you sell faster and make more money.
The overall condition and appearance of a house is important in determining how fast it will sell and how much the buyer will pay.
Curb appeal is make or break. Many buyers won’t view a house that doesn’t have curb appeal. Others are unable to look beyond your belongings once they’re in the house.
Buyers start making buying decisions at the curb, If a house doesn’t have curb appeal, you’ve lost a buyer.
You Never Get A Second Chance To Make A First Impression.
Buyers have built in discount clocks that start ticking at the curb. They look for ways to reject your house and ways to discount your price. The buyer’s discount clock is always ticking
Tic, Tic, Tic . . .
• Is the driveway clear and clean?
• Is the side walk free from clutter?
• Is the lawn mowed and edged?
• Is the house inviting?
• Is the sidewalk clean and clear?
Tic, Tic, Tic . . .
• Is the mailbox painted?
• Are box numbers easy to read?
• Are house numbers easy to read?
• Would colorful floors at the front door add appeal?
• Is the front door clean, new or newly painted?
• Is the entry porch clean and clear of stuff?
Does it sound like a pain, tending to all the details? You do want top dollar don’t you?
Once inside the house:
• Is the entry inviting?
• Is it well lit? Consider using full spectrum lighting.
• Is it clean and free of clutter?
• Would mirrors make the space seem larger?
You have to detach from the house. The house is a property, not your “home.” Refer to it as a house, not your home. You are preparing the house, not your home, for the market. Make that distinction. It will help you stage the house. Is the buyer mentally moving in? It’s imperative that a buyer sees himself/herself as living in the house. If they like the house, they’ll mentally move in.
You want the buyer to start thinking of it as their home. You have to get rid of family portraits that line the stairs and halls. Too many personal memories can actually make the buyer feel guilty about taking you away from your home. Memory lanes are psychological turn offs for the buyer. You don’t want distractions.
You plan to move after you sell right?
• Start packing before you put the house on the market.
• Box up nicknacks, photos and stuff.
• Thin out.
• Box it
• Store it.
• Have a garage sale.
• Less clutter creates a sense of space.
• Less stuff makes a house inviting.
Come on, you can do it.
Consider storing or selling some of your furniture. Create wide walking spaces. Recliners and sofas, are great for living, but terrible for showing. Clear walking areas. Make the rooms appear larger.
Visit model homes. Notice how sparsely they’re furnished. This creates a sense of spaciousness. Go home and start weeding out your excess furniture and clutter.
Lots of lights. Be sure there are working bulbs in all light fixtures. Consider full spectrum lighting as it gives a nice natural light without starkness. Turn on lights for showings.
Clear counters. Goodbye toasters. Goodbye kitchen appliances. Make the kitchen sparkle. Clean stove, broiler and oven. Clean the back splash. Buyers notice.
Bathrooms must sparkle.
• No wet towels.
• No toilet articles left out.
• Clean mirrors and shower doors.
• Beds made
• Neat closets.
• Pick up clothes.
• Pack most of your clothes.
• Remove excess furniture.
• Create a sense of roominess.
If buyers are thinking move in, help them. Open blinds and drapes Put a bouquet of cheery flowers on the table.
The garage counts. Clean the garage floor. Grease spots are a turn off. Get rid of tools. Pack, hang or store them.
Would you buy this house? in its present condition, for the price you’re asking?
If your answer is not a resounding YES; then reconsider your price or improve conditions. Consider hiring a professional decorator.
The final List:
• All Guns and jewelry put in a safe deposit box.
• Put away dog and children’s toys.
• Professionally clean all windows.
• Fresh paint pays for itself.
• Heat cinnamon in the oven – not necessary but nice.
• Dresser drawers orderly.
• Music – I vote no, buyers may hate your selection.
In summary you want to remember:
• Create Openness.
• Make the house bright and cheery.
• Create spacious walking areas.
• Make everything shine.
• Approximate the look of a model home.
• Have a guest book.
• Have a flyer.
Good Luck Selling Your House.
About the Author
Wee Dilts is the creator of the original for sale by owner flat fee MLS program, author of the best selling “How To Sell Real Estate by Owner” book, and has assisted FSBOS since 1983. • Colorado For Sale by Owners can register for MLS, purchase her book, or download Free FSBO tips at http://www.fsbofriend.com
If you have FSBO questions you’ll get a prompt response by writing to Wee at firstname.lastname@example.org