is a boom, though, there may be a bust. Read any headline from
your local newspaper, and you’ll see headlines such as “Bye-Bye,
Housing Boom” to “Housing Boom is Leveling Off.”
Some economic forecasters predict a bubble that may be about to
burst. They make you wonder: am I missing the boat?
looking to cash in on this real estate bubble before it pops—or
simply wanting to move to a bigger home or move across the country—selling
your home can be more a nightmare than a dream. Not only do you
have to find and trust a real estate agent. You need to prep your
home for open houses. You need to haggle with prospective buyers.
Not to mention, you have to worry about the moving and selling
of all of your valuables.
almost enough to make you want to live in one home for the rest
of your life—just as folks did in your grandparents’
day. Then again, your home is worth a percentage of that $14 trillion.
Don’t you want to see just how much?
and horrible as selling a home may seem, it really isn’t
so bad if you break it down into a few simple rules. If you don’t
believe us, read the rules for yourself.
the façade. Your home’s future owners do not want
to worry about repairs and renovations as soon as they move in.
So make certain they don’t. Be sure to have your home immaculately
clean before you invite prospective buyers over. Redecorate if
your interior is outdated. And invest in minor renovations if
necessary. You’d be surprised what a coat of paint can do.
Focus on the
fine details. Prospective buyers will leave no stone unturned
when they visit your home. They will test every light switch,
run every faucet, and lift up every toilet seat. Everything—and
we mean everything—should be in working order before your
for blown out light bulbs and leaky faucets. Scrub the bathroom
and clean up any ring around the bowl, tub scum, and any other
settle for maybes on safety. Ensure that there are no safety hazards
anywhere on your property. Something as small as uncovered electrical
sockets or as large as an unfenced pool can scare off buyers,
especially parents of small children.
Create a soothing
selling atmosphere. Imagine the last time you visited a bed and
breakfast. Your home should be as welcoming and accommodating
as that. One easy way to accomplish this is by brightening up
the place. Turn on all your lights for your visitors. Plus, fluff
up your bedroom. After all, most people want the bedroom to be
the most comfortable spot in the house. Make sure it is—at
least when buyers are around.
joint. Along with the last rule, there is the standard real estate
practice of vacating the premises when buyers come for tours.
This is done for good reason. Buyers are there to evaluate your
home, not meet your sisters, sons, cousins, and cats. So send
your family to the mall for a day of shopping, or to the park
for a picnic.
Cut the clutter.
All of your stuff can get in the way, too. That’s why it’s
important to start packing and storing your personal belongings
as soon as you know you’re going to move. An empty house
is a cleaner looking house is a more attractive house. You don’t
want your perspective buyer opening a closet and having a bowling
ball fall on their head, do you?
Make a killing
on said clutter. One option is to simply move your personal items
to your new home and create instant clutter there. That’s
the way of the pack rat. Or, you could sell what you no longer
need and turn a quick profit. That’s the way of the fat
If you choose
wisely—the latter option—be sure not to hold your
garage sale on the same days as your open houses. Neighbors in
their undershirts and jeans on your front lawn do make for a great
sales ploy. Instead, it makes you look desperate and could hurt
you come negotiations. Schedule your yard sale on separate days.
sell your goods online. Classified Web sites allow you to negotiate
with potential buyers, get the best rates for your stuff, and
ship it off at your own convenience. And it’s all accomplished
on your own time, inside your own home (where you can wear your
undershirt and jeans and no one will care).
Take a deep
breath. Lastly, never let the home-selling experience overwhelm
you. Sure, there are a load of responsibilities to take care of.
But that is what your real estate agent is there for. They handle
all of the grunt work. They do all of the hard talking with the
buyer. They make all the follow-up calls. And they showcase your
home for you. Your job is just to smile, be polite, and answer
the buyer’s questions if they come up.
is the public relations manager for Buysellcommunity.com. Buysellcommunity
provides free classified listing services for individuals and
businesses to market their products and services online.