Serious About Selling? 5 Steps to Make Your Home the Best on the Block
We all want to be good neighbors, but when it comes to selling your home it’s not good enough to just “keep up with the Joneses.” You need to be outshining them in every way.
If you’re looking to sell your home fast and for the most money possible, you’ll need a strategy to set your home apart from all the other listings competing for buyers in your area. That’s why I’ve outlined my proven, five-step plan for serious sellers. Use these five tactics to help your listing get noticed, win over buyers, and net a higher sales price than your neighbors!
STEP 1: Stage Your Home to Show Its Full Potential
The average seller will do the minimum to prepare their home for market: clean and declutter, fix some things that are broken, and mow the lawn. While those tasks are essential, today’s buyers want more than just a clean house and tidy yard. When they dream of buying a new home, they envision a designer house with modern finishes. Help them see your property’s full potential by staging it.
Home staging is one of the hottest trends in real estate because it works. According to the Real Estate Staging Association, homes that are professionally staged spend 73% less time on the market (1).
So what exactly is staging? In a broad sense, staging is the act of preparing your home for market. The goal is to highlight your home’s strengths, minimize any deficiencies, and help buyers envision themselves living in the space. When staging a home, you might rearrange the furniture to make a room feel larger or remove heavy curtains to make it brighter.
Some sellers choose to hire a professional home stager who has specialized training and experience to maximize the appeal of their home. Others may opt to do it themselves, using guidance from their agent.
I can help you determine the appropriate budget and effort required to push your home ahead of the competition in your neighborhood. The good news is that an investment in staging pays off. A 2018 survey found that 85% of staged homes sold for 6-25% more than their unstaged neighbor’s home (2).
STEP 2: Draw Buyers in with High-Quality Listing Photos
You only have one chance to make a first impression with potential buyers (and their agents!). Many buyers will view photos of a listing before they decide whether or not to visit it in person. In fact, 87% of buyers find photos “very useful” in their home search (3). Poor-quality or amateur-looking listing photos could keep buyers from ever stepping through your door.
Since good photography plays such an important role in getting your property noticed, I only work with top local professionals to photograph my listings. But I don’t just rely on their photography skills when it comes to showcasing your home—I go the extra mile to ensure your listing photos showcase the true essence of your home. I’m always on site during the photo shoot to help the photographer capture the best angles and lighting as well as letting them know about unique or compelling selling features that they should photograph. The extra effort pays off in the end. In fact, listings with high-quality photography sell 32% faster than the competition. . . and often for more money (4).
STEP 3: Price It Properly From the Start
Even in a strong real estate market, there are homes that will sit unsold for months on end. This can be the “kiss of death” in real estate, as buyers tend to imagine that there must be something terribly wrong with the property (even though that’s likely not the case). Why are those houses still on the market in the first place? Because they are often priced too high.
Every buyer has a budget and most will be viewing listings within a particular price range. If your property is overpriced, it can’t properly compete with 1) houses priced appropriately in the price range above yours (since your home will not have the features that other homes in the more expensive price range will have) and 2) other houses similar to yours that have been priced correctly (at a cheaper price/better deal than yours). This means your home will sit on the market until you’re eventually forced to drop the price into the correct price range to be competitive. Except now your home has sat on the market and everyone can see the days you’ve gone without a sale. This not only gets people wondering what is wrong with your home, but it puts you in a weak position when it comes time to negotiate the sales price at the time of an offer.
Alternatively, if you price your home aggressively, it can be the nicest home that buyers have seen within their budget. This will lead to emotionally-attached buyers who are often willing to pay a premium to get what they want or they may even settle for fewer seller concessions. In certain markets, this can lead to a multiple-offer situation (AKA: bidding war). The end result? More money in your pocket.
Let me help you determine the ideal listing price for your home in the current market. Pricing it properly in the beginning is always best to increase the likelihood of a fast and profitable sale.
STEP 4: Put on a Good Show at Each Showing
Once buyers are interested enough to schedule a visit to your home, it’s crucial that you put on a good show for them at each and every showing.
The first step to putting on a good show for buyers is to make your home readily available—and often on short notice—for them to see it. A missed showing is a missed opportunity to sell your home. If you set too many restrictions on when it’s available to view, busy buyers will simply skip over your home and move on to the next one. Don’t think that buyers will just reschedule either; many times a single rejected showing request takes your home out of the running altogether.
Part of making your home available also means keeping it relatively “show ready” as long as it’s on the market. Most of us don’t live picture-perfect lives and our homes reflect the day-to-day reality of our busy (and sometimes messy) families. But a little extra effort spent keeping your home clean, fresh smelling, and ready for buyers will help it sell faster.
STEP 5: Use a Proven Promotion Plan
Most agents are still marketing their listings like they did 20 years ago . . . they put a sign in the yard, put the listing in the MLS, and pray that it sells. Yet, we now know that 93% of buyers search for real estate listings online first instead of driving through desired neighborhoods as once was the case (3).
That’s why I invest in the latest training and technology—to ensure that your listing appears in the places where buyers are most likely to look. My dual-level promotion strategy includes both pre-launch activities designed to seed the marketplace and post-listing activities to ensure your home stays top-of-mind with potential buyers.
By utilizing online and social marketing platforms to connect with consumers and offline channels to connect with local real estate agents, your property will get maximum exposure to prospective buyers.
LET’S GET MOVING
Are you thinking about listing your home? Get a head start on your competition! Contact me for a copy of my Home Seller’s Guide, which offers a complete guide to the home selling process. Or call/text me at 828-458-8378 to schedule a free no-commitment consultation. I’d love to put together a custom plan for you in order to maximize the sales potential of your property!
Real Estate Staging Association - https://www.realestatestagingassociation.com/content.aspx?page_id=22&club_id=304550&module_id=164548
Home Staging Resources -
National Association of Realtors -