One of the hardest parts about selling a home is raising buyer interest. In some cases, even attractive properties are having a tough time selling, and there could be several reasons as to why.
The path to real estate success isn't always straightforward, and the obvious decision might not be the best - or the most cost-effective. However, there are a few easy steps homeowners could take before listing their houses, and a few components that require a little attention to help get people looking at a property.
Prioritizing one repair over another
Before the current residents make any financial decisions, a home inspection should be able the shed some light on the house's current condition. Taking this important step first may help homeowners figure out what needs to be fixed, or if there are any emergencies that should be addressed immediately.
There isn't a manual that says how to do everything, explained home inspection professional Mark Waldman to CNN Money. Despite that fact, there are a few good places to start. For example, the electrical system should be a priority, due to the high safety risk of this component. Several danger signs include breakers that often trip, dimming lights when other items are turned on, or outlets that are loose or hot to the touch.
In addition, the basement is also a smart place to check. A property inspection could point out several areas of concern, and homeowners should also be aware of any problems before selling. If the higher floors are shifting or cracking, the cause is often rooted in the basement, according to the news source. Cracks are an obvious warning sign, but so are split beams and signs of pests like termites.
The roof is a common home concern, and many buyers and sellers worry about this aspect during a real estate transaction. However, residents shouldn't forget gutter maintenance before listing, since this system is almost as important, CNN Money noted. Gutters that aren't working could lead to water damage, or hurt the roof itself. Therefore, they should be cleaned regularly and repaired if anything becomes disconnected or damaged.
Easy ways to prepare a home
In order to get a property to sell, it has to stand out from the crowd. A home inspection is a great idea to get a residence prepared, and owners should also make some easy fixes to help the process along.
Barb Schwartz, CEO of StagedHomes.com, explained to U.S. News and World Report about the importance of getting a house ready, and helping potential buyers envision themselves there.
"The goal [of home staging] is for the buyer to mentally move in," Schwartz told the news source. "If they cannot mentally feel and see themselves living here, you've lost them."
To do that, homeowners should place extra importance on curb appeal. Schwartz mentioned that hedges should be trimmed, leaves cleaned up and the driveway power washed. Even taking these simple steps should help a property stand apart from the rest.
Most importantly, a home that is about to be listed needs to be clean. Extremely flawless, Schwartz explained, including removing dead flies from windowsills and cleaning those hard-to-reach areas that are often neglected during the homeowner's stay. The main reason for this is to appeal to buyers, and also to assure anyone viewing a property that there aren't other problems lurking beneath the surface.
A home inspection could also remove some of those concerns. The better a listed house looks on the outside, the more likely sellers would have maintained other critical components. Buyer interest could instantly receive a boost if the current homeowners put a little extra effort in before selling.