One of the worst situations in real estate is having a house on the market for an extremely long period. No matter what the value, we all want to sell our house quickly so that we can move on, but sometimes houses take a long time to sell.
Fortunately, you can take a few steps to increase the chances that your home will sell fast…
Take a Buyer’s Perspective to Your Home
To really understand the most important improvements for your home, you have to take a realistic, unemotional look at your house. This can, of course, be hard, because this is the property where so many memories were made. This might be the first property you bought as newlyweds and the home where you raised your children. You may have taught your daughter to ride a bike right on the front sidewalk or trained your dog to fetch in the backyard. It’s tough to critique your own home, but you have to take an unemotional approach and look at it like a buyer.
It also important to note that these suggestions will not necessarily apply to all homes, because each house will have different needs. For example, if you home already has a decent kitchen but less-than-ideal landscaping, it may be more beneficial to focus on the exterior, while another home may get the most benefit from new floors, fixtures, or paint.
Think of the last time you purchased a car from a dealership. The cars you were shown were flawlessly clean and shiny. For all their perceived faults, car dealers know how to sell, and the good ones always present a product that catches your attention. You should take the same approach to selling your home.
Important Note: We’re Not Talking Home Value, We’re Talking Selling Fast
To clarify the points in this article, we’re not talking about adding value to the home. Instead, we’re talking about home-improvement strategies that can help you sell the home quickly. While many of these projects will affect both areas (home value and speed of sale), this article centers primarily around selling a home quickly.
Financing for Home Remodels
If you need help financing these home upgrades, there may be options available, such as HELOCs or 203(k) programs. However, some options may require that you stay in the home for a certain period. Talk with an home-loan expert for the best renovation-financing options for pre-sale improvements.
Top Home Improvements to Help Your Home Sell Quickly
While simple outdoor cleaning and mowing the yard is helpful, you can significantly improve the “curb appeal” of your home by hiring a landscaper to make some minor improvements to the surrounding area. You probably don’t need to go through the process of installing walkways or retaining walls, but you can plant new bushes, clear large brush, trim the sidewalks, and remove dead or dying plants to give your home a lively, healthy exterior.
Install Hardwood Floors
Old carpets and outdated flooring can be a significant drawback on the sale of your home. While replacing these items is a fast and easy project, many buyers want a ready home that doesn’t need remodeling. To make buyers more interested, take care of this project for them and you’ll likely have more interested buyers. Some buyers, quite frankly, can’t see beyond ugly carpet, so have it replaced before your first open house.
Sand and Polish Old Hardwood
Keeping our attention on the floors, if you have old hardwood that is faded or worn, it may be easier to have it sanded and polished by a professional. This is a relatively simple project that is usually more affordable than replacement. It’s also a great way to preserve the natural charm and warmth of old hardwood flooring. While the project is simple, it may take up to four days to complete, so call ahead to schedule an appointment with your local expert.
Paint the Walls
This is similar to the old carpet replacement: people often can’t look past ugly interior paint. Say you have a kid who decided to paint his or her room bright green; do you think buyers would want a bright green room? Maybe someone does, but most buyers will want a clean, neutral tone. Either paint the room yourself or hire a professional to complete the task. Depending on the quality of your interior, you may also want to roll a new coat of paint all through the home to make it look new and well-kept.
Is your lighting dated? Does it fully illuminate the rooms? Lighting can go in and out of fashion quickly, so if you have unique lights that were fashionable ten years ago, you may want to have them replaced with modern options. Also, if you have a room that is not getting enough light from the current fixtures, see if you can install new lights that brighten the room and give the space a warm glow.
Finish the Basement (But Don’t Specialize)
Unfinished basements can be a blank canvas for home buyers, allowing them to remodel the space any way they see fit. But as we’ve mentioned before, many buyers don’t want to purchase a house and then immediately dive into home projects. Have your unfinished basement completed, but avoid personalizing the space. For example, you may want to avoid installing a bar and lounge, as this could be a turnoff for families that want to use the basement as a kid’s room.
New Kitchen and Bathroom Fixtures
Some of the easiest upgrades can be new fixtures for your bathrooms and kitchen. A new sink, new faucets, and even a fresh new dishwasher can give your home a high-quality appeal, and these project are usually simple and easy. Many can even be complete by someone with moderate handyman skills. A new faucet, for example, is usually a simple replacement that gives your kitchen a sleek appeal.
Install a New Roof
This is certainly more utility than visual appeal. If you can tell potential buyers that your roof was replaced in the last year, people will be much more comfortable buying your home. The national average for roof-shingle installation is $7,500 according to RoofingCalc.com, but this project will give buyers greater confidence and could be the difference between a quick sale and another month on the market.
Making the Home-Loan Process Simple and Convenient
If you are ready to move into a new home, contact San Diego Purchase Loans today. We can help you get pre-approved for the right loan option on your next purchase, allowing you to move into the home that works best for your needs and your budget!
“Chad Baker is THE BEST, most professional, understanding, HONEST person I’ve ever worked in the mortgage industry. He knows exactly what he’s talking about, will never promise something he can’t deliver, and will bend over backwards to get you what you need. I had a very unique problem qualifying and every other mortgage company I worked with assured me from the beginning that they could get me financed, and then it would all fall apart once we hit underwriting. Chad understood my circumstance from the beginning and patiently explained every step of the way. I can’t thank you enough Chad! Juliann has been great keeping me updated and making sure that everything comes together in a timely fashion. She also appreciates my sense of humor, which gives personality to a boring funding process. Thanks Juliann! I HIGHLY recommend Home Point and if I ever buy another home, will absolutely use them again.”
I was referred to Chad by my Realtor for a purchase of a new house. The experience with Chad and the team (I mainly worked with Juliann) was nothing short of outstanding. From start to finish there were always quick to respond and when needed, notify me of any new documentation that was required. There were very helpful explaining to me the pros and cons of different financing options as well as some other loan related issues, such as termite clearance outside the purchase contact and septic tank certification process. Overall, very knowledgeable and processional team. Loan preapproval was done in a single day and loan documents were ready for signing in 21 days, which was 9 days ahead of schedule. That never happened to me before.
“We’re loving our new place and we’re very pleased with how smoothly everything went through closing. Thanks for keeping us up to date on the possibility of refinancing at a lower rate; we trust your judgement as far as waiting until the rate is around 5% lower before we refinance. We’re very interested in pursuing that if rates drop to that level. Thanks so much for all your help and personal attention!”