House hunting is important, but arranging your current residence for sale is not less important. Your best interest is to maximize the price of your current home.
There is a tremendous difference between well maintained, upgraded, renovated houses and those which are not. Having said that, there is no need to go crazy for a full complete renovation. A little investment, time, and effort spent on preparation will help you sell your house faster and for the top dollars.
A great place to start making your house more attractive is throwing away old garbage. We all accumulate goods during our life. Sometimes the garage and the basement are full of old broken tools, garden hoses, toys, clothes that kids are too big to wear, furniture that we don’t use anymore. You need to show to the buyers the potential and space in the house. If the item isn’t used and has no sentimental value, its time has come.
Now that the inside of the house looks better, you can start working on the outside. Invest in minimal landscaping and clean both front and back yards. Curb appeal is a crucial element of an excellent first impression, so make your home as inviting as possible. Clean out last year’s leaves, grass, and branches, throw out the garbage and old broken tools. That old wheelbarrow with holes in the tire has to go. If your weed is 6 feet tall, it’s time to clean up. Mow the lawn, prune the bushes, plant some flowers or purchase arranged ready planters for your front yard. Do it yourself or spend a few hundred dollars for professional gardening and cleaning. Make sure you clean the outside of the house. A sloppy exterior will have your buyers thinking you’ve slacked off on the interior maintenance as well. Be sure to clean the gutters and pressure wash your home’s siding and driveway if needed. It’s a buyers market, so you want your home to be in the best condition possible. Make critical repairs, take care of the major defects like a broken window or a leaky roof that could discourage buyers. You don’t want that leaky window to be the issue of the buyers’ house inspection, the reason they walk away from the deal, or start negotiating the price all over again. Make the front door inviting. A fresh coat of paint, especially in a colour that contrasts with the home, will make the front door stand out, replace faded house numbers so buyers can see them from the curb, and buy a new welcome mat. Let the buyers know they are invited into your home. Your house needs to stand out from the rest on the market.
The last step is a total clean up inside the house. You can’t make the house brand new; but a clean, well-maintained interior will bring in more offers. Do minimal repairs, clean the bathrooms, the kitchen, the windows, the walls, the doors, remove spider nets, clean the hardwood and tiles, and wash the carpets. Take colour down a notch; you may like your lime-green bedroom, but it may repulse some buyers. Paint the walls with a neutral colour that will appeal to a wide array of buyers. Patch and paint the walls if they are too dirty to be cleaned, or have a considerable number of the little holes. The listing pictures would be edited to make the house pop as much as possible, but the eyes of the buyers and agents see the real house. Imagine the disappointment of potential buyers when they see a beautiful bright home in pictures and step into a dusty, dirty home with damaged walls. Make every surface shine, from the ceiling fans to floors and everything in between, clean your home until it sparkles. Remove clutter and depersonalize. Buyers want to envision their belongings in your home. Clean up by renting a storage unit for knickknacks, photos, extra furniture, and other personal items. Organize closets and drawers; messy closets give the appearance that your home doesn’t have enough storage space. Eliminate bad odours, hide the litter box and spices, spray air neutralizer throughout your home.
Now that the house is at tip-top shape, you can start getting to business. Find a stellar real estate agent. There are many of us, that’s why you need to find the right agent. Someone who will put your interests on the top of their priorities, who knows your geographic area, who will help you to stage the property, has a marketing plan, advertise the house, make a comparative market analysis, will provide you with the best information to make your decisions, and will negotiate the best deal. Price your home to sell. Listen to your agent’s advice. Study the information the agent offers you. A higher price will bring you no showings and no offers. Get your home picture perfect so your agent photographer can capture it in the best possible condition. Our team is proudly providing all of those stellar Real Estate services and much more! We specialize in North GTA Real Estate residential sales, purchases and leases.
It’s now time to list your home for showings. Home showings are hard to juggle regardless of whether your home is empty or full of kids. You have to clean it up every day and keep it in “showing ready” condition 24/7. Do not refuse showings, if you don’t want people in, there will be no one to put an offer. Find a place for your pets during showings.
Now, you got an offer. Don’t refuse the offer even if you think it’s offensive or way too low. Let your agent negotiate, try to put your emotions aside, and never sign a purchase agreement before you’re clear about what is and is not included in the offer, and how it affects you. Pay close attention to these details:
- Purchase price
- Closing date
- Special allowances for personal property, home improvements, and closing costs
- Contingency deadlines for the home inspection, appraisal, and buyer financing
- Additional contingencies such as the sale of the buyer’s current home
- Fixtures and chattels included in the offer. Make sure you leave them in the house.
Once you and the buyer reach a final purchase agreement, you won’t be sitting pretty quite yet. There’s still a lot to do from contact to closing. Don’t wait until the last minute to pack. Keep your home insurance up-to-date until you’ve signed the dotted line. Contact your lawyer or let your agent do so. Remember – delays can happen!
Our warmest congratulations on your new house!
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