To sell your home, you have to get buyers to fall in love with your home.
Buying a home is often an emotional decision. We hear it again and again as people declare their love for a home, a room, the view, the floors, the windows, the backyard, even the front door.
People can spend hours, days, weeks analyzing and researching the purchase of a new TV. But their decision to make the biggest purchase of their lives is often left to the heart.
So what can you do to get buyers to fall in love with your home?
1. Clean it up
Your tolerance for clutter and disarray may not be shared by the people looking at photos online of your home, or visiting it at an open house. If you want to get buyers to fall in love with your home, you’ve got to show them you love it as well.
That means trimming the grass, weeding the garden, pruning the shrubbery. Clean the windows, dust the bannisters, put away old magazines and the dog bed.
It’s also important to tidy and declutter storage areas as things like closet, cabinet and counter space can often make or break a decision to buy. If your home has a garage and it’s gotten out of control, spend a weekend cleaning it out and properly storing the items left behind so potential buyers can appreciate the space it offers.
2. Fix it up
If you’ve been putting off freshening the paint in the living room, replacing that worn carpet or patching that dent in the drywall you made when you were moving in the new couch, now is the time.
A small investment of time and money to deal with all those maintenance issues you’ve been tolerating could mean thousands of dollars added to the sale price of your home. You wouldn’t buy a dented car with a flat tire from a used car dealer, so why would a potential buyer want to have to correct your neglect.
3. Minimize your presence to get buyers to fall in love with your home
If you want to get buyers to fall in love with your home, they’ve got to think it’s their home. So while you may be proud of the carefully curated collection of troll dolls that line your living room walls, they might just creep out visitors to your open house. Pack away those personal knick knacks, photos, diplomas and snow globes. Get rid of some of your overstuffed chairs to make the home seem more spacious.
4. Work with your realtor to set a fair and marketable price
Go online and study other recent sales and current listings in your neighbourhood. If you’ve got the time, drop in on some of those open houses to gauge what’s catching buyers’ eyes, what they’re saying about that home and your neighbourhood. Then take a step back and make an objective assessment of what your home offers in comparison.
5. Play up your home’s unique features
To get buyers to fall in love with your home means selling them more than just the walls, roof and floor; you’re also offering them a lifestyle. So you have to market any unique features that will help buyers fulfill their lifestyle dreams and distinguish it from other homes on the market. That could be proximity to transit or parks, space for a pool or parking multiple vehicles, a special view, even your home’s history.
While the process of buying a home is all about negotiation, dollars, contracts and offer sheets, the decision to buy a home is often emotional. So getting a signature on a sales agreement means you have to get buyers to fall in love with your home first.