Ready to sell a house? If so, you can’t just throw up a “For Sale” sign and expect the offers to start rolling in. That’s an easy mistake first-time home sellers can make, especially if they’re trying to sell a home fast. And it can backfire BIG time.
Because houses are a major purchase that most homebuyers consider carefully. And if your home isn’t in ready-to-sell condition, buyers can easily pass it up for other, more attractive options on the market.
So, what exactly can you do to get your house ready to list?
Take these steps.
7 Steps to Take Before Putting a House on the Market
Showcasing your home in the best light — and marketing it to potential homebuyers — involves a little know-how and the right plan. Generally, that plan should involve these key steps that can help make your home as appealing as possible to prospective buyers.
1. Research the local real estate market.
How much have local homes like yours recently sold for? You’re going to want to look at selling prices for comparable homes in your area, meaning houses with about the same square footage, features, and location as yours. This research is going to help you zero in on the right asking price.
Keep in mind that market research isn’t the only thing you need to consider when setting the asking price. You should also think about:
- The condition of your home: If you’re selling the house as-is or if you know there are some issues that a buyer will have to fix if they purchase the home, you probably want to price the house at a reduced rate.
- How fast you want to sell your house: If you’re looking to sell a house FAST, you may not want to ask top dollar for it.
Given how important the asking price is — and the fact that getting it wrong can make it far more challenging to sell a house — it’s smart to consult a Realtor for some professional guidance and advice here. It could make the difference in whether you sell your house quickly, for a fair price, or whether the house sits on the market for months (or years).
2. Clean and eliminate clutter.
Dirty, cluttered houses can hide any great features homes may actually have. So, make sure the house is thoroughly cleaned before it’s listed or shown to prospective buyers.
To help buyers really be able to see themselves in the house, you’ll want to depersonalize and declutter the space. That can mean removing things like (but not limited to):
- Religious and political items
- College or sports memorabilia
- Any extra clutter that’s spilling out of drawers, storage spaces, or the garage
The idea is to make the space as neutral as possible, so it’s like a blank canvas letting buyers easily envision themselves living there.
3. Add light.
Light can really transform a space, opening it up while creating a better sense of flow. To add light to your home, you can:
- Remove certain window dressings or replace darker shades with lighter ones.
- Get all of your home’s windows professionally cleaned, inside and out.
- Trim hedges or trees right outside the home to let in more natural light.
- Add mirrors and/or other reflective surfaces throughout the home to brighten it up even more.
4. Decide whether you’ll be selling the home as-is.
Do you have the time, energy, and extra money to make certain upgrades to the house before listing it? Or are you stressed about time and money and just looking to offload the house ASAP?
If you’re going to make some updates first, you’ll need to:
- Figure out precisely what renovations you want to make: Remember, not every upgrade will offer the same value or return on investment (ROI) when you’re selling a home. So, carefully consider which updates could yield the best ROI, so you’re not throwing your money away.
- Plan ahead: You’ll need more time to prepare your house to put on the market if renovations are going to be part of the process.
One more key thing to keep in mind is that there can be pros and cons to as-is sales versus fixing up your home before listing it. Your circumstances, needs, and goals can all help you figure out your best move here.
5. Stage your home.
Staging your home means setting up the space to present it in the best possible light. That can mean:
- Removing certain items from the home.
- Adding in new items to the interior of the home, especially if older things (like furniture) need to be replaced.
- Sprucing up the exterior of the home to boost curb appeal.
This is another step where it can help tremendously to have the assistance of a real estate professional who knows what appeals to buyers — and who knows how to showcase your home in the best ways possible.
6. Take professional pictures of your home.
Professional photos of the house will be paired with any listing for your home (online or in print), and they’ll be featured on open house materials. As with staging your home, professional photos can:
- Do a lot to highlight attractive features and spaces in the home
- Mute the house’s less appealing aspects (when needed)
- Convince interested buyers to take the next steps
You may want to have a professional videographer shoot some video tour footage of your home as well. Online tours could really move the needle for prospective buyers, especially when they’re professionally crafted to deliver a seamless experience.
7. Talk to a Realtor.
Ultimately, what you do to get your home ready to put on the market can set the stage for how soon that house ends up selling. With an experienced Realtor leading the way, you can be confident that:
- You are taking all the right steps to get your house in sell-ready shape.
- You’re in a great position to start getting offers sooner, rather than later.
- You’re much more likely to get a fair price for the house, instead of having to slash the asking price to just get rid of it.
Selling a Home in Texas? Get Cash Back at Closing
If you’re getting ready to sell a home in Texas, you can get experienced help and cash back at closing when you work with the 5-star Realtors® at New Home Gurus. We can guide you through the process, helping you with offers, negotiations, and closing. Plus, we’ll split our commission with you at closing!
Home sellers who work with New Home Gurus can get back an average of $4,500 to $12,000 at closing.
How Much Cash Can You Get after Closing?
Call (281) 668-8124 or Contact Us to Find Out Now
We are standing by, ready to answer your questions and explain the details of our commission-sharing program.