The Ultimate Guide to Getting your House Ready to Sell

The ultimate guide to getting your house ready to sell
(Photo : pixabay)

The process of selling your home can seem like a daunting one, especially with the number of choices that you have to make. Do you use an agent? Is it worth spending extra time trying to increase the value of your house? This guide will help answer some of those questions.

Getting an initial valuation

This is something that many people skip, not realising how important it is to get a correct valuation on your house before you start. A home that is overvalued may stay on the market for too long, which will cause fees to add up and stop you from being able to move on and move into your new home or get the equity from the sale that you need. A house that is undervalued my sell quickly but you'll be disappointed if you find out that you left thousands of dollars on the table because your home wasn't correctly valued.

The best strategy is to get several valuations from different sources. This will provide you with a much more accurate representation of what your house is worth, and you will most likely find outliers that are either significantly higher or lower than the average valuation. An excellent place to start is with your research. Look at websites with houses for sale and look for houses in the same area as yours that are comparable sizes. If you can find a home that has sold recently or is on the market that is on the same street as yours then this will give you a good idea of how much you will be able to sell your property for.

Do you need an estate agent?

Depending on your situation the simple answer is that getting an estate agent is probably the best choice for you if you want to sell your house quickly. Some people have an aversion to using agents due to the fees involved or due to a poor experience in the past. You can technically sell a house without an agent, but all the work that they do you will have to do yourself. This mainly comes down to the marketing, which you can do on social media, on certain websites and with word of mouth. In general, though using an agent will remove the work needed to get your property sale in front of the right people. There are two main options available to you; using a local high-street estate agent and then using an online estate agent.

If you are looking to save money on fees, then an online estate agent will probably be a more cost-effective option. Highstreet agents often take up to 3% of the selling price of the property, whereas online fees are generally much cheaper than this.

If you do choose to work with a local agent, there are some things to be mindful of. The first is to get several quotes and look at the small print. It may be tempting to choose the agent that values your property the highest, but this won't be helpful if they also have the highest fees. Check the fees compared to the sale price to get a better idea of what the final cost will be. In addition, make sure to check the terms and conditions for any extra hidden fees. Some services that you may expect to be included may end up surprising you later. Check if the agent will expect to have your sale exclusively. If you want to stay flexible, then make sure that the terms and conditions of the contract do not grant the agent exclusive rights. Finally, you may want to look into a specialist agency such as Supreme Auctions which focuses on luxury sales. A company with specialist knowledge in your type of property will be able to give you more specific advice on the sale.

When you are choosing your agency, take a look into how they plan to market the property. There are several great websites that you should make sure that your house will be on, and then there will be more local marketing to go along with it. This will include local website and papers.

Materials for marketing your property

Once you have decided on what agency to use, if any, you will need to pull together the assets to market your house. This starts with good photography. If you're selling your house, then you have most likely bought a home as well, and this starts by scrolling through dozens of properties for sale online and in the newspaper. There will be 80% of these that you have scrolled past because the house didn't look beautiful on the photos. This is the first thing that you see and will impact if you are willing to take the next step and read more and get in touch. Make sure that the agency that you are using provides professionally taken photos or that you get them done yourself. The photography should be done with good lighting and needs to show the house at its best. Take the time to prepare the home before any photos are taken so that it is clean and all the clutter is moved into cupboards for the shots. For more information on taking professional photography of your house for sale check this guide.

The next thing that will help with the sale of your property has excellent floorplans that arcuately represent the house. After looking at the photography and the basic specs of the home, this is the next thing that people will look at. Again this should be a part of the deal that you have with your estate agent. Most people will have an idea on the dimensions of the rooms they want, whether it is to make sure that their furniture will fit or to ensure that the photography isn't making the house look bigger than it is.

Finally you will need your description. This should be detailed enough to give someone all the information they may need to book a viewing, but concise sufficient to deliver this information before people browsing don't get bored while reading it. Focus on providing a list of the rooms in the house and all of their key dimensions, a list of amenities near the property, transport information and then and energy details that will be useful to know.

Making your property ready to view

Now that you have your property marketed properly and people are asking to view it, you will need to make sure it is presentable. The first thing to do here is to keep the décor neutral. This may mean doing some work before you start getting viewing requests to make the house as generally appealing as possible. This may mean painting over and particularly bright walls or wallpaper, as you style may not appeal to everyone. The best way to think of this is that you want to create a look that will help viewers be able to imagine what the house will look like with their own furniture and decoration in it.

The next thing to do is remove as much clutter as possible. This also links into helping people imagine what it would be like for them to live somewhere, which becomes more difficult if there is lots of your stuff cluttering up the house. In addition, clutter can make rooms look smaller and untidy even if you like your house decorated this way. Take some time to take as much stuff as you can and store it away while people are viewing the house.

Rearrange the furniture

If you have any furniture that is not necessary, think about removing it to create more space. One of the main things that people viewing a house are looking for is space and having lots of furniture in a room can make it look like there isn't much of it. Creating space can also help people to envisage what their own furniture will look like and how it could fit into each room.

Clean and fix

Finally, take the time to make the house look as clean as possible. Give all the walls and doors a fresh coat of paint and deep clean the floors and surfaces. As you are doing this make sure that everything that can be fixed for a reasonable amount of time or money is done. When a house is being viewed only to find that lights don't work and thing need to be fixed this may be enough to turn a potential buyer off or will give them ammunition to try to barter the cost down.

Outside as well as in

Don't neglect the outside of the house - make sure that the front door has had a fresh coat of paint and that the yard has been tended to. Look at the guttering and window too as these are something that buyers may pinpoint to lower the value of the property.

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