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Charlie Glahe WIN Broomfield

How to prepare a home for a sale

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Navigating the real estate market can be just as stressful for sellers as it is for buyers. Each step could bring a new set of complications, and the smallest detail could throw the entire process out of sync.

Thankfully, well-prepared sellers can make it all go much smoother. A home inspection can be a great asset to everyone involved, and this quick, affordable task could reassure buyers about the overall quality of a house. Also, homeowners should prepare their properties both before an open house and an inspection, so everything looks fantastic while the home is on the market.

Explore renovation options before selling
At some point during the process, buyers might call in a home inspection professional. When this time comes, it is highly important for the homeowner to be prepared. Sellers should always have their homes ready well in advance, although it never hurt to be thorough and take the time to spruce up both inside and out.

Some improvements can be quite costly, but there are also a number of quick renovations that can be smart decisions to pursue before selling, according to HomeAdvisor's Andrea Davis, in an article for MSN Real Estate. For example, a simple coat of paint can potentially sway buyers in one direction or the other. The best choice here is a neutral tone. Many homeowners love bright, bold options, but those colors might not have the same appeal to others. Instead, a fresh coat can set a home apart while it is on the market.

In addition, Davis recommended easy kitchen upgrades to help update the entire house. Total renovations can be costly, so instead, homeowners may want to pick and choose smaller fixes. For instance, a cabinet makeover can drastically alter the look of a kitchen, at a lower cost than a complete remodel. Minor changes might have a larger return on investment for sellers, and even fetch more money during a sale.

Outside, the home may need as much attention as the inside, Davis continued. Curb appeal is a major part of any sale, and it shouldn't be forgotten. A complete makeover isn't needed - however, clipping back bushes and trees, mowing the lawn and planting flowers are all wise maintenance decisions to explore before selling.

A property inspection can help any sellers figure out where changes need to be made, or it could be the deciding factor between a successful sale and a bumpy one.

Manage a negative report well
In many cases, the potential buyer hires a home inspection professional to take a look around a prospective property. If the report comes back with bad news, that could change how negotiations are handled or even stop a sale. Therefore, it is important for sellers to take any news they receive well.

Once the inspector delivers his or her final word, sellers should change their approach to the sale, according to HGTV FrontDoor. Essentially, a bad report could set the seller up for more peace of mind later. If terms are reached with the buyer regarding who pays for which repair, liability for future problems could be waived. That means the seller isn't on the hook anymore, and they can move on to the next home. 

Additionally, more information is always good news. After the report is in, sellers should sit down with their Realtor to discuss the results, the news source noted. It could work out for every party involved - repairs could be completed for less money, finances could be negotiated surrounding the closing and the buyer could feel more confident moving forward. A property inspection is highly valuable during any real estate transaction.