I have been getting tons of questions about how on earth our house sold in 6 days. My most honest answer is God. I can give you some of my guesses but I am not sure...we had 5 showings in 6 days and the first people that saw it bought it. I do have a few tips because it has been a LONG process, one we didn't share publicly for a long time. We kept it mostly to Scott and I which is unusual for me, I am a very share-y type person but we wanted to make sure our intentions were purse and we were motivated by God's voice and not any other opinions, if that makes sense?! But as we have navigate the real estate market as rookies, there are a few tips and things I have learned along the way, I thought might be of value so I will share....
- Prep your home before you have any realtors over. Make sure if there is any glaring things that would discount the price of your house you take care of it, even little things. We replaced the screen in our back door because there was a hole. Little things like that can make the buyer worry you are leaving bigger thing unkept.
- Discard clutter from your home. I air on the side of purging. Clean out your closet of things you don't wear, if you don't wear it now, chances are you won't wear it next season. Pair down your accessories to a manageable amount. You want your home to be as de-personalized as possible. We have book shelves that contain only a few staged books. I packed up the rest. I also replaced all personal photos will photos I printed off my computer...they are not high quality but they help to depersonalize your home.
- Clear your counters/dressers - I only have my mixer on my counter. Everything else needs a home and make sure your cupboards are neat, they don't have to be empty. Your bathrooms should be empty except for a soap dispenser or basket. People don't want to see tooth brushes drying next to a sink.
- Stage your furniture to maximize your square footage. We recently redid our living room to make it look much bigger.
- Clean your carpets and vacuum regularly. Nothing like those little vacuum marks to make the buyer know you keep a clean house.
- We deep cleaned EVERYTHING from washing fixtures, dusting blinds, cleaning all appliances.
- Don't over "smellify" your home. I brewed coffee, didn't have time to bake cookies, but think of a warm inviting, natural smell...
- Interview 2-4 realtors. They do market analysis on homes for free and you are their business so their interview should be professional. Prepare some questions like what is your commission? What sets you apart from other realtors? Then compare. We really liked the first realtor we interviewed (ended up being the one we chose) but she had a higher commission, we negotiated with her for a better rate.
- Hide/downsize the plastic paradise known as toys....maybe it is just us but we got a lot. I clean out regularly but our kiddos have some favorites that take up some room. We packed some up, donated some others and then during showings I stuffed a lot into our little tykes house. It is amazing what you can shove in there behind closed doors and shutters :)
- Above all else, remain calm and do not hold your hope on the sale of your home. We have had some ups and down regarding the sale of our home and I am sure we will have many, many more. It is hard not to get totally invested and get your hopes up. You also have to let go of the fact that this is your "home" to other people it is a "house". They may not see the gem you see and that is okay. Pray about your home selling, God cares about all the details of your life. He listens!
We have learned a lot, have more learning to do and are pretty sure we will not move again for MANY years (fingers crossed and this is our plan, not necessarily God's). It is A LOT of work but the end justifies the means in this case.....more to come soon. We have been busily knocking off that to do list I posted the other day and I have photo overload of our choices coming!