Happy February! We can hardly believe the first month of the new year is already gone! We hope you’ve had a great start to the year and are well on your way to accomplishing your goals.
If your goals include selling a home this year, then this list is for you!
As you probably know, the Orlando market is very seasonal, and real estate sales really heat up during the Spring-Summer seasons. For this reason, many sellers try to list during these peak months. If you want to sell quickly, for the highest possible price, then now is the time to start preparing your home! The following are our best tips for things you can start doing today to prepare your home for the market.
1. Repairs and Replacement:
This is the time to catch up on “deferred maintenance”. If your exterior walls show color deterioration, visible mortar lines, or feel chalky to the touch, it is time to repaint them. If your carpets are old and worn, you may want to replace them. Basically, to achieve the highest price for your home, you want it to appear well maintained and move-in ready. Anything you don’t want to bother with fixing, will be fixed by the buyers of your home eventually. But it will be reflected in the sale price. Our experience indicates that buyers frequently deduct 2-3 times the actual cost of many repairs to account for the unexpected.
2. Home Improvements:
Do you have unusual paint colors you know is a personal preference and may be an “acquired taste”? This is the time to neutralize those colors. Do you have outdated features or fixtures? If they are inexpensive we may recommend that you update them. For example, the older round bulbs in bathrooms, aka “Hollywood lights” can be inexpensively replaced with modern light fixtures. Sometimes, more expensive upgrades may be worthwhile before putting your home on the market. For example, if you have outdated Formica kitchen/bathroom countertops, you may get full return or more for your investment if you upgrade to granite or other more popular countertops.
3. Purge and Declutter:
There are probably some pieces of furniture and other items in your home that you are tired of. There’s no reason to move them to a new home, just get rid of them now. Also, pack up as many personal items as you can. It can be difficult for potential buyers to picture themselves in the home if it is full of your family photos and memorabilia. Remember: less is more.
4. Spruce Up Landscaping and Curb Appeal:
Overgrown landscaping? Time to trim it back. Dead patches of lawn? Time to fertilize and water. Weeds in the flower bed? You know what to do. Save re-mulching until right before listing your home, that will give the front a fresh look for photos and showings. Also, a good power wash of the front walkway and driveway can do wonders for the impression of your home.
5. Close Out Permits:
We can help you look up the permit records for your home. If there are open or expired permits, you can work on closing them out before listing the home so they will not cause issues or delays during the contract.
Of course, this is not an exhaustive list. It is always helpful to give us a call first. We can evaluate your home and prepare a detailed, customized plan to prepare your home. We can even provide resources to help you get the work done. Check out our Neighbors in Business list to help get you started!
Until next time, take care!