6 Steps Toward A Higher-Selling Home

You probably won't get many chances in your life to sell a home (unless you work in the real estate industry), so of course you want to make the most profitable, timely sale possible. But making your home properly functional and presentable for that successful sale may take some doing. Here are six things you should do to ensure that you get the most for your home.

1. Home Inspection

Your buyer will inevitably request a professional home inspection, if only to uncover problems that can be used as leverage in negotiations. Why not beat them to it by ordering your own pre-emptive home inspection? The inspector's report will reveal any issues that you might need to correct before even attempting to sell the home. Simply having the professional report will expedite the negotiation process.

2. Mechanical Repairs

Lighting, climate control, plumbing, and garage door repairs can all make a difference when you show your home to a prospective buyer. No matter how pretty the interior or exterior may look, at some point your customer will want to see how (and whether) the home's various gadgets works. You can't afford to have your garage door get stuck halfway or your kitchen faucet to refuse to emit water in the midst of your sales pitch. Get these items looked at and fixed before you show the property.

3. Landscaping

The first thing prospective buyers will see as they drive up to your home will be the lawn and front garden. Is your greenery ready to meet them? Unkempt grass, scraggly shrubbery, rusty toys in plain view, and dead flowers in the garden may nip your sales opportunities in the bud. Get your landscaping in top condition, even if you have to hire a professional. After all, your buyer is buying the front of house as well!

4. Enhanced Exteriors

A dull, dilapidated exterior won't fill viewers with the urge to make your house their home. Refitting the property with new roofing, siding, or paint will make it appear younger, fresher, and better maintained. To some extent, however, exterior remodeling is a matter of "keeping up with the Joneses," in that:

  • Your enhancements may not dramatically raise your asking price unless the surrounding homes look ancient in comparison.
  • On the other hand, if your home is the only decrepit-looking one on the block, failing to perform these modifications could make it all but impossible for you to command a market-competitive price.

5. Interior Staging

All those personal touches you've bestowed on your home will need to go before you have any home of selling the property. That's because prospective buyers won't buy a home that they can't easily visualize themselves living in. Home staging is a technique of giving the interiors a neutral yet attractive ambience. Typical home staging tricks include:

  • Removing all personalized knick-knacks such as family photos, trophies, and mementos of vacation trips
  • Re-doing the walls and carpeting in whites, earth tones, or other non-aggressive colors
  • Updating antiquated stylistic details to give the home a more modern appearance
  • Using scented candles that emit comforting odors such as vanilla or cinnamon

6. Professional Photography

Once you have refurbished your glorious "new" home, you want to make sure that its listing displays that glory to potential buyers. Ask your real estate agent whether professional photography is included in the listing process. If not, consider making the investment yourself. A professional photographer can select the perfect balance of sunlight, porch lighting and composition, creating a series of beauty shots that will make your home look irresistible.

As you can see, little things mean a lot when it comes to selling a home. From mechanical repairs and exterior improvements to interior home staging techniques, the preparations you make now will help you enjoy a faster close with less haggling later. Good luck!