If, for some unexpected reason, something came up and you had to put your home on the market in 30 days, would that cause you to panic? Or would you feel calm? Here are 8 tips to help you be calm.
Let’s plan now to feel calm if that situation should arise by
- starting the plan now. Set up a budget for your time and financial expenditures that will be needed to get top dollar for your home by hitting the market when it is hot. It may take you a year or two to get to the goal of being ready if needed for the 30-day alert, but don’t get caught with a huge list of items that need addressing before you can list your home.
Every and any good realtor would tell you the first thing to do is
2. get rid of the clutter and quite probably 50% of the contents of your home. Start with one room and go through each room putting everything you do not currently need or use in a box or bag to be donated to your favorite charity. You set your schedule as to how long it will take you, then begin to work your plan weekly until you have reduced the contents of your home down to what you currently use and need.
With all the clutter gone, what is next? Here is a check list to consider:
- What is the unique feature that makes your home more appealing than those around you?
That will be a highlight for strategic marketing so make sure the view is unblocked and clean, or that patio looks stellar, or highlight that shady backyard, do wildlife often visit, or do you get a great view of the moon each month. Think about what sets your home apart. In our case it is the two 140-year old Maple trees in the backyard with a hammock on a small deck between the trees. We just transplanted about 50 plants in the yard to create a forested look under the trees.
- In addition to the unique feature of your home, every home needs to be spotless, eat off the floor kind of clean, as my mother would say. So get to it or hire it to be done. Address every cobweb, dust-bunny, dirty wall, wood that needs polishing and have closets super clean and uncluttered (that should have been included in the declutter piece earlier). Carpets shampooed. Fresh paint if the whole interior has not been painted in the last year. Faux may have been fantastic in the 80’s but a neutral color throughout is the best for the ‘looking’ buyers (gray, beige, off-white, white are best). A basement bedroom may be a lime green but most of the living space should be neutral ready for the new home owner.
- Is the hardware looking good and is the color up do date? The Gold finish passed years ago as has much of the polished silver so check with your realtor for the best current advice.
- Do moderate and practical updates! Inexpensive updates could include new toilet seats, cabinets painted, replace bathroom sink, replace grout in the backsplash, floors, and tub surrounds.
You cannot make your home brand new but it can be well updated and sparkling clean.
- Is your home visually appealing from the curb? Lookers take about 8 seconds to decide if they care enough to look further so make your place sparkle. Make a plan to upgrade the curb appeal with shrubs, trees trimmed and flowers looking good. No debris in the yard. In the NW we put down fresh bark.
- Entrance to home may need revamping. How are the door knobs, the color of the door? Ask your neighbors and family for curb appeal and of course your realtor can help you with all your decisions.
Now, relax and enjoy your lovely home. Staying ready for that 30-day-to-list alert does not have to be worrisome if you have given time and effort on a consistent basis to your home. It is probably the largest investment of your money so stay on top of your investment. In all my days of sailing experience, we hauled our boats out every year for a thorough inside and out cleaning, repainting and decluttering. It is a good habit to do on land too. Waiting 30-40 years for repairs and regular maintenance can cause larger repair issues and have added costs.