The Carlsen Blog

How to Sell Your Home Faster

Posted on: Thursday, March 31st, 2011 at 5:15 pm and is filed under Article, Blog.

The housing market in the Fraser Valley is already showing signs of fabulous spring!  Inventory continues to remain low in desired neighbourhoods.  Homes are selling in under 30 days in most areas, giving buyers less choice and less leverage when making their purchase.  In areas of Langley, White Rock, Richmond, Vancouver and surrounding areas, we continue to see multiple offer sales.  If you’re thinking of selling your home this spring, here are a few tips to help set your property apart from your competition.

Hire an experienced realtor.  A Real Estate Consultant will work with you to determine exactly what you want to accomplish.  They go beyond simply listing your home on the MLS and placing a sign in your yard.  

Conduct a pre-listing inspection before you place your home on the market.  Making any necessary changes or repairs before your home is listed will give potential buyers reassurance before they conduct their own inspection.  That leaves less chance for re-negotiations or price reductions at the end.  Have your inspection binder open for potential purchasers to see the first time they see your home.  They’ll know they’re getting a quality product.

Purchase a pre-owned home warranty for 1 year from the date the new owners move in.  HomeLife has a great 1-year Home Warranty program.  Together with your pre-listing inspection and HomeLife’s 1-year Home Warranty, we market your home as a Certified Pre-Owned Home – separating you from your competition and giving the new owners peace of mind.

Curb appeal is an absolute must!  Remove anything that doesn’t look pretty from outside your home.  If you have an RV, utility trailer or extra vehicles, find another place to store them.  You want purchasers to drive by and see your home – not all your stuff!  Trim hedges or shrubs leading up to your front door. Adding flower boxes or hanging baskets is a great touch and gives a great first impression – before they reach your front door!

Seek the advice of a stager or re-design expert.  Most realtors offer this as a part of their standard service.  It is absolutely necessary to remove all personal items such as photographs, certificates or memorabilia.  The goal is to offer a neutral decor and atmosphere so that prospective buyers can picture themselves living there.  You don’t want them to feel like they are intruding in your home.  Remove anything that doesn’t look pretty (like soap dispensers, cleaning clothes, pot scrubbers, kleenex, etc.).  Fold under the ends of toilet tissue in all bathrooms.  The little extra touches make a huge difference!

Updates absolutely help sell homes faster.  Buyers are very savvy.  They shop and compare and they are looking for a home they can move right into without doing too much work.  The more updating you can do – the better!  Paint is the cheapest and easiest (and fastest!) renovation.  Re-painting in neutral colours shows nice, clean walls and makes your home smell new!  Don’t forget the trim!

Fresh towels make a huge difference.  Replace bathroom towels with clean, white towels.  Fold a few extra for display.  (My biggest pet peeve, is showing a house with those crocheted hanging things on the stove!  Get rid of them!)

Pay attention to the smell of your home.  The best way to do this is when you first walk into your home after being away.  Every home has its own unique smell and you absolutely don’t want buyers coming into your home asking, “what is that smell?”  (Unless it’s a great smell!)  Try simmering a pot of water with a few orange peels and cinnamon sticks for 30 minutes before showings. 

Remove pets!  Can’t say it enough!  Pets suggest odours and hidden stains so make sure your pets are either contained or removed from the property!

Be Flexible!  Be flexible with your showing times, closing dates and price!  Remember:  the goal is to sell your home!

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