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7 essential steps to prepare your home for sale

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You don’t have to go through a lengthy renovation to sell your home. Smaller investments can bolster your windfall just as effectively. With most Americans looking for properties first from a laptop or smartphone, “pictures are essential,” says Jay Bell, co-founder of Virtually Staging Properties in Doraville, Georgia. Even before the pandemic, 70% of house hunters visited the interior of a house. online, according to a 2019 report from the National Association of Realtors.

To attract buyers and maximize your home’s selling price, real estate experts have these seven tips, including a new way to stage a space in the digital age.

Your home may be special to you, but for potential buyers, it’s just another property. To sell it, overcome your emotional attachment and see your home as a product. “For many retirees, this is probably the biggest hurdle to overcome, especially for those who have lived in their homes for a decade or more,” says Lori Matzke, owner of Home Staging Expert in Arlington, Minn. Just because you love your home’s brightly colored accent wall or bold patterned wallpaper doesn’t mean others will find it appealing. Look at the space as a buyer would – with a critical eye – to spot what needs to change.

Home buyers like to imagine themselves living in the house with their furniture in the room. So store family photos, knick-knacks and collectibles, and remove pictures from walls and coats.

Downsizing your possessions helps your home get a higher selling price. “The less stuff in a room, the bigger it looks,” says Mary Kay Buysse, executive director of the National Association of Senior and Specialty Move Managers in Hinsdale, Illinois. If eliminating a lifetime of possessions seems overwhelming, hire a professional organizer, who will even call the movers and deliver your freebies. Organizers charge between $ 50 and $ 125 an hour, or between $ 3,000 and $ 5,000 to help clean an entire house.

While the rooms aren’t cluttered, you don’t want them to be completely empty either. If you need to leave the house while it’s on the market or just want a more neutral, attractive home furniture to showcase the pieces, a staging company can help. Traditional staging usually involves only furnishing a few key rooms., such as living room, dining room, master bedroom, master bathroom and a powder room. It can cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars to over $ 6,000 if you end up renting the furniture for an extended period.

As a cheaper alternative to traditional staging, businesses can digitally add furniture to images of rooms in your home. These photographs can then be used on websites that display listings of homes. The virtual staging costs approximately $ 500 in total and lets you furnish spaces you wouldn’t normally do with traditional staging, like placing a pool table in a recreation room. The downside is that the rooms you virtually organize have to be completely empty.

Anything you can do to brighten up and freshen up your home is likely to pay off. Paint the exterior accents of your home, including the letterbox, to enhance the curb appeal. Use a product like Orange GLO to shine cabinetry and wood floors. Replace bulbs in lamps and overhead lights with bulbs of a higher wattage. Replace thick window coverings with something that lets in more light, like sheer curtains. “Bright rooms energize potential buyers,” says Matzke.

If larger renovations are needed, limit them to simpler projects, such as upgrading kitchen appliances or bathroom cabinets, rather than knocking down walls to reconfigure the room’s footprint. . Any upgrades you make should be in line with the average house prices in your area. “You don’t want the nicest house in the neighborhood,” says Buysse. “If your home is in a moderate price range, choose moderately priced cabinets and appliances. Otherwise, you are not going to get the money back. “

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