Lansing Home Sellers

Whether you're re-locating, upgrading, or downsizing, the process of selling can be daunting. Regardless of your reason for selling your home, you'll need a good chunk of time to prepare for the sales process.

Here are a handful of steps to get you started...

1. Take a Step Back – Get a New Perspective

How you look at your home is quite a bit different than how a prospective buyer views your home. Coming to this realization and, more importantly, taking the right steps to prepare your home can be challenging to most people.  I recommend assessing your home in the same order that buyers will be viewing it; Outside first, then the main rooms, then the nooks and crannies.

So, you might be wondering, "What do I look for?"  It's pretty simple, put yourself in the shoes of the buyer and ask yourself, "what's wrong with this picture?"  Let's start with the front yard.  To use a real estate cliché, does your home have curb-appeal? Is the landscaping neat and tidy? Is the driveway in good repair? How does the paint job look? Is the lawn mown and flower beds weed free?

The list gets long but you get the idea — list all the issues you can find that might raise an eyebrow of a new buyer prospect.  Next, take your newfound critical eye and go through every room in the house. Finally, dive into the nooks: closets, basement, storage spaces, garage, etc.

You may be overwhelmed by your new list but if you put it into priority order and tackle the serious issues first, your home will quickly be putting on a new face.

Curious Woman wondering what her home is worth

Wondering What Your Home is Worth?

I can help you consider all the most recent changes to real estate trends in your area, what other nearby homes have sold for and give you a very close approximate home value.

2. Put on Your Mr. Fixit Hat

You've heard the phrase "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."  Well, as an extension of #1 above, "IF IT IS BROKE, FIX IT!"

Here's a list of things to check throughout your house:

  • Touch up paint and remove any visible scratches
  • Fill nicks, scratches and nail holes in wood surfaces
  • Repair screens and windows
  • Repair any roof damage
  • Replace plants with healthy ones
  • Repair/replace sealer around tubs and sinks
  • Repair grout on floors and counters
  • Fix/replace broken door/cabinet hinges
  • Repair leaking faucets/toilets

If you connect with me as your agent, I can give you the guidance you need on making this list and putting it priority order.  If you're in a rush to sell or don't have the time or cash to get through your list, you can always list the house "as is" with the expectation that buyers will ask you to reduce the price of the house by the estimated cost of these same repairs.

3. De-Clutter the Clutter

Here's an easy first step; Take a look at your kitchen. Are the counters filled with every gadget known to man (including that Ginsu knife set from Ron Popiel?) Or, is every surface pristine and clutter free?  Shoot for the latter.

As you walk through all the other rooms, keep that same standard in mind. Although you may love that little ceramic gnome your grand aunt Sally gave you for your 5th birthday, it's not helping to sell your house. Pitch the gnome ... Clutter is a killer.

The longer you've been in your home, the greater the probability that you've filled it to the brim with "stuff."  When you look at a new neighborhood model home, have you noticed that the rooms are sparsely filled? This isn't an accident. Less furniture makes a room look bigger and more spacious.  That, and you never know what tastes a home buyer may have.

Now is the time to purge! Sell some of those old, unused items on Craigslist and make a few bucks. You may need the extra cash to pay for temporary storage for all the other stuff you'd like to keep. Okay, you can keep the gnome.

4. Grime is a Crime

Next up, get out your elbow grease and rubber gloves. It's time to CLEAN HOUSE!  First, your carpets will need to be steam cleaned. Polish the floors and furniture. Scour the cabinets. Wash the windows. Dust the ceiling fans. Clean around light switches, cabinet knobs and door handles. Degrease the kitchen appliances. Clean (quite literally) everything.

5. Taking Your Home to Market

Whether you're selling your home as a fizzbo (FSBO - For Sale By Owner) or hiring me as your agent, you'll need to start marketing your home and attracting prospective buyers.  As soon as this process starts, you need to be aware that you and your home need to be presentable at the drop of a hat!  This includes things like:

  • Vacuuming daily
  • Clean up toys and clutter daily
  • Keep the windows open to provide LOTS of light
  • Keep the doors open to make the areas appear spacious
  • Clean the bathrooms (and litter box) daily
  • Burn candles regularly to remove food and other odors.

Here's a quick tip:  If you know an agent is showing up in the next couple of hours, turn on the oven to 350 and let it get through the pre-heating phase. Put a drop or two of vanilla extract on a pan in the oven.  The result will be your home smelling like freshly baked cookies. Mmmmm.  What could be better than a brightly lit, spacious, clean house that smells like cookies?

6. What is Everyone Else Doing?

Put in the time to check your comps. In this case, I'm not referring to the comparable listings in the MLS, I'm talking about you going out and actually seeing the competing homes for sale in your local area. If you've done a good job with #1 through #5 above, you should be okay.  However, seeing what your neighbors are doing may help give you ideas on how to compete for those same precious buyers.

7. The Bottom Line

If you're ready to start this process, give me a call at 517-974-6614 and I'll be happy to guide you through all the necessary steps to get your home ready as quickly as possible and to take the necessary steps to maximize how much you'll get for your home.

I've helped home buyers in the following communities...

INGHAM COUNTY

CITIES
East Lansing
Lansing
Leslie
Mason
Williamston

VILLAGES
Dansville
Stockbridge
Webberville

COMMUNITIES
Haslett
Holt
Okemos

TOWNSHIPS
Alaiedon Township
Aurelius Township
Bunker Hill Township
Delhi Charter Township
Ingham Township
Lansing Charter Township
Leroy Township
Leslie Township
Locke Township
Meridian Charter Township
Onondaga Township
Stockbridge Township
Vevay Township
Wheatfield Township
White Oak Township
Williamstown Township

EATON COUNTY

CITIES
Charlotte
Eaton Rapids
Grand Ledge
Lansing
Olivet
Potterville

VILLAGES
Dimondale

COMMUNITIES
Waverly

TOWNSHIPS
Benton Township
Carmel Township
Chester Township
Delta Charter Township
Eaton Rapids Township
Eaton Township
Hamlin Township
Oneida Charter Township

 

SHIAWASSEE COUNTY

CITIES
Laingsburg City
Perry City
Owosso City

VILLAGES
Morrice Village

COMMUNITIES
Shaftsburg

TOWNSHIPS
Woodhull
Perry
Sciota
Bennington
Owosso
Caledonia

CLINTON COUNTY

CITIES
DeWitt
East Lansing
Grand Ledge
St. Johns

VILLAGES
Eagle
Elsie
Fowler
Ovid
Westphalia

COMMUNITIES
Bath
Lake Victoria
Wacousta

TOWNSHIPS
Bath Charter Township
Bingham Township
DeWitt Charter Township
Eagle Township
Olive Township
Ovid Township
Riley Township
Victor Township
Watertown Charter Township
Westphalia Township