Massachusetts Real Estate

head_left_image

Low Cost Home Improvements When Selling Your Home

                                                                                                                                                   paint front door selling home

In a very competitive Real Estate market one of the things that is vital to your success is how well your home shows in relation to the rest of the inventory for sale. There are quite a few simple things that you can do to improve your chances and maybe put a few extra dollars in your pocket at the same time.

Maybe you are not even thinking about selling your home right now. When the time comes, however these lost cost improvements could make a difference.

1st impressions are always important so you want to make sure the entry to your home shines. As the buyer approaches the front door the last thing they want to see is an old worn door with cob webs hanging from above.

Most buyers are going to assume right of the bat if the home is not well maintained on the exterior, the interior will not be much better.

The Entry Way

Painting the front door or even replacing it if it is beyond paint can make a real difference. A nice shiny door set always stands out as well.

If you have vinyl siding and you have not cleaned it in a while mildew, dirt and grime can accumulate. Giving it a quick spray can surprisingly make a big difference in the appearance.

Plant Some Color

add flowers when selling a homeWhen selling your home planting some flowers around the entry can really make your property come alive. Choose a variety of colors that really stand out.

Adding a few potted plants if you have a covered entry or a large enough stoop is always a nice touch as well.

 

 

 

Fix Up The Baths

replace toilets selling your homeWhile remodeling a bath is one of the highest returning home improvement projects it may not be in the budget at the moment.

If however, you still have your gold toilets and sinks from the 70's it may be time to let go and move on the something that 99% of the population would like better.

Have a gold shower too? There are lower cost alternatives to ripping out the shower. There are specially made bath fitters that are designed to be put over a shower. New faucets are another lower cost item that can make a difference. At the moment silver/nickel is back in and brass is less popular.

Changing towel ranks, toilet paper holders and shower heads are also nice touches for short money.

 

 

Paint Those Walls

person painting to prepare for selling their homePainting is one of the cheapest most effective improvements you can make in your home especially if the colors are not neutral to begin with. I know you love the pink entry way and purple bathroom but most buyers will not.

I know what your thinking painting is cheap...the buyer can just do it themselves. Most people think this way, however, there is a large part of the population that does not have any vision. They need to see it done.

Painting your home off white or if you want to be slightly more bold in earth tones, is the best way to go. When selling your home all decisions should be done to appeal to the masses.

 

 

 

Address the flooring

replace carpet when selling a homeA little more expensive but one of the better returning investments especially if you are still hanging on to the orange shag.

Even if you have more modern carpet but just don't have enough in the budget for new carpeting, a good cleaning by a professional can help out dramatically. The same can be said for wood floors as well.

A good scrubbing can go a long way.

 

Clean Your Windows/Treatments

clean windows when selling a homeCleaning your windows can really spruce up your home especially if they have not been done in a while.

A bright home always shows far better than a dungeon. Removing heavy drapes and curtains can help as well, especially if they are out of date.

It is far better to have nothing than to have a pattern that was popular in the 80's.

 

Change Old Lighting

Change old lights selling homeLighting is one of those things that are subtle but believe me a buyer will notice if the lighting is really dated.

There are some great lights that can be purchased rather cheaply in many lighting stores especially if they are looking to restock their shelves with the latest model.

Even little things like upgrading to brighter bulbs can help. Most home buyers are turned off by dark unlit rooms.

Although a little more expensive to add, recessed lighting can really change the level of lighting in a room. Recessed light work really well in kitchen and baths.

 

Declutter Your Home

This one can really go a long way. Buyers like spacious rooms that they can envision their own belongings in. Getting rid of things that you know you will not be taking with you can really change the appearance of your home.

Hold a yard sale for those items that still hold value. Have other things you know you want to take with you but know they spoil how well your home shows? Get a PODs (portable storage on site) or even consider putting your stuff in a short term storage facility.

Not every improvement has to be expensive. Sometimes it is the small things you do that make the biggest difference in a buyers mind.

 

 

Have an interest in knowing what some of the more expensive home improvements return on your investment? See:

Best remodeling projects cost v.s value for your home

Getting ready to put your home on the market? Here are some other important articles that discuss the home selling process and how to increase your chances of success:

Preparing your Massachusetts home for the Spring selling season

Top ten mistakes to avoid when selling your Massachusetts home

Selling your home in a buyers market

______________________________________________________________________________________________________

About the Author: The above Real Estate information on Low cost improvements when selling a home wasRE/MAX Executive Realty Hopkinton Mass provided by Bill Gassett, a Nationally recognized leader in his field. Bill can be reached via email at billgassett@remaxexec.com or by phone at 508-435-5356. 

Have a home to sell in Metrowest Mass? I have a passion for Real Estate and love to share my marketing expertise! 

For Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate and homes see Metrowest Mass Real Estate. Want to have MLS access to beat other buyers to your dream home? Sign up with no obligation at my MLS Property Finder Site.

I service the following towns in Metrowest Massachusetts: Hopkinton, Milford, Upton, Southboro, Westboro, Ashland, Holliston, Mendon, Hopedale, Medway, Grafton, Northbridge, Uxbridge, Franklin, Douglas, and Framingham MA.

Click here to view Bill Gassett's Real Estate profile.

 

 

Subscribe in a reader

 

SUBSCRIBE TO MY METROWEST HOMES BLOG via email.

Building lasting relationships by helping people move in and out of Metrowest Massachusetts for the last 23 years.

Connect with me on

104 commentsBill Gassett • March 11 2009 10:23AM

Comments

I like it!  Your post, that is, and I plan to re-blog it right now.

Posted by Shirley Parks, Broker, 210-414-0966, San Antonio TX Homes (Sands Realty 210-414-0966) over 5 years ago

Hi Bill, I have a seller that has an old arched wood door, not so easy to replace. I suggested that she use some Minwax on it to give it some shine and it really helped.  I also suggested that she change out her old brass fixtures in the bathroom. A contractor came in and said that brass was coming back, was valuable and would be hard to replace.  I am curious to see if that turns out to be true.  Somehow, I don't think so. 

Posted by Jen Bowman, Realtor - Anna Maria Island & Bradenton FL (Keller Williams Realty) over 5 years ago

Thanks Shirley. For those on a tight budget some simple improvements can go a long way in increasing the salability of a home.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Jen - I am sure in different parts of the country some things may be slightly different but as a general rule brass has been out of style for a while. Your thoughts on using Minwax was a good one and can really make a difference.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

This is fabulous and not just for home buyers who want to sell.  Many of these improvements will make wonderful "Spring Upgrade" ideas.

 

Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Thanks Lenn. As a terrific buyers agent I am sure you can attest to the fact that it makes a HUGE difference when you enter a home that has been well kept.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Declutter Declutter Declutter would be key, some of the pictures alone scare people away.  Some clients just can't see past the clutter to the potential of the home and if you are trying to sell your home and it is cluttered, you are doing yourself a disservice for sure.

Posted by Heather Fitzgerald, REALTOR Greenwood Indiana Real Estate (REALTY WORLD-Harbert Company, Inc.) over 5 years ago

Bill, Great Looking post and good info for consumers. There's no doubt that decluttering (not to be confused with detwittering) a home can make all the difference if a sale is to take place. The same emphasis should be put into cleaning up any waste left behind by any pets a homeowner has. Sometimes that can be a dealbreaker. Always have plenty of lysol handy!

btw: we talked to Everard and explained the issues with the outside blog.

Victor and Ray

Posted by Castellum Realty Lancaster real estate, homes for sale in lancaster county PA (---Preferred Lifestyle Advisors---) over 5 years ago

This is a great posting, Bill.  You really provided some good information.

Posted by Jason Rose, www.123ConEd.com (123 ConEd LLC -- Michigan real estate continuing education) over 5 years ago

Fabulous post!

Another one for my... "send to my sellers as soon as they sign the paperwork" list!

Thanks Bill!

Posted by JoAnna Siminerio (Weichert Realtors - Manalapan - Marlboro) over 5 years ago

Bill, great post, thank you. You cut right to the point.

Posted by Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) over 5 years ago

Nice tips Bill!  I agree with Lenn, that these also are good ideas for people not selling.

Posted by Kathy Passarette, L.I. Staging/Decorating (Creative Home Expressions) over 5 years ago

With these short sales, I have  a hard time getting my clients to buy a new door mat, let along paint!!  I'd be hapy if they'd put their dirty clothes away and make the beds.

Posted by Jim Cheney, Rincon Valley Realtor (Saint Francis Property Santa Rosa, CA) over 5 years ago

Heather, Victor, Jason JoAnna, and Andrea - Thanks for you comments on some of the better low cost improvements you can make when preparing your home for sale. There are many sellers that don't have the money to do some of the more expensive improvements. These simple things at least can improve the saleability dramatically.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Kathy - As someone who really takes pride in their home I would have to agree as well:)

Jim - Short sales are another animal all together. It seems that many sellers seem to just "give up" and think that this kind of thing doesn't matter. Of course that is not true.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Bill-Well said and simply put. The selllers can greatly improve their houses at NO cost by simply decluttering and giving everything a real good scrubbing.

Posted by LYDIA LAMOREUX (ZipRealty) over 5 years ago

Lydia - 1st impressions are everything in life whether it is a home or a person. In a competitive market it makes a big difference.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Great tips Bill, the entry way and curb appeal of the home are huge factors!  Although, changing flooring can be pricey, it is probably more cost effective for a seller to recarpet for $2500 then drop the price $10,000.  The minor, inexpensive changes make an enormous difference!!

Posted by Patricia Beck, Colorado Springs Realty (RE/MAX Properties, Inc., GRI, CDPE) over 5 years ago

Bill - I think doing this will be a great way to get in gear for the spring time.  These suggestions if implemented can make a property more attractive therefore it will sell faster for more.

Posted by Jennifer Fivelsdal, Mid Hudson Valley real estate connection ( JFIVE Home Realty LLC | 845-758-6842|162 Deer Run Rd Red Hook NY 12571) over 5 years ago

Patricia - Sometimes you can spend money and get a bigger return for your buck than you normally would in a challenging market. In my experience, when trying to sell in an environment that is very difficult those homes that do not show well and need improvement get severely punished. Buyers always want to over estimate the cost of repairs and upgrading too.

Jennifer - Exactly especially when there are far fewer buyers in the market.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Great blog - Bill good for spring selling time...

Posted by Kathy Knight, BROKER, ABR, CRS, GRI, SFR, Wilmington NC Homes and Beach Homes (Intracoastal Realty Corp) over 5 years ago

Kathy - Thanks for the compliments on the home improvement tips:)

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Simple and cost-effective improvements that are sure to improve the seller's bottom line! It's a great post; I want to re-blog it, too.

Posted by Pat Starnes (Pat Starnes Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Pat - Thanks for the compliments on the article. Go right ahead and re-blog it.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Bill ~ This is great information for sellers serious about selling their homes! And can I just add that your Metrowest area sellers are so lucky to have such a knowledgeable listing agent working for them! Thanks for sharing your tips on low cost home improvements for sellers.

Posted by Terrie Leighton, Reno Real Estate Agent ~ Selling Homes in Reno (Ferrari-Lund ~ Reno's Premier Real Estate Company) over 5 years ago

Terrie - Thanks for the great compliments. I really appreciate it!! Going the extra mile even on the little home improvements can really be a big help.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Bill, I just got back from our office tour and one of the homes we visited needed all of these areas to be addressed.  My feedback to our agent will be a link to your blog.  Thanks for the info!

Troy

Posted by Troy Batson, Bend, Oregon Real Estate (The Broker Network of Central Oregon) over 5 years ago

Terrie - Thanks for the great compliments. I really appreciate it!! Going the extra mile even on the little home improvements can really be a big help.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Troy - LOL ....Good idea. I am glad you thought my home improvement article was worth the link:)

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Bill, this is great information! Right now putting out the primrose and pansy for color really pops the eyes! I will have to re-blog you on this one! thanks for allowing it!

Posted by JO SOSS, Kitsap County WA Real Estate - HOMEFRONT Realty (HOMEFRONT Realty) over 5 years ago

Bill,

Thanks for the great tips. These are not only good ideas for the seller, but just as spring cleanup in general!

Jane

Posted by Jane Baer (Jane Baer Realty) over 5 years ago

Great ideas even if you are not selling your home... Working bathrooms and a clean home are probably good thing no matter what.

Posted by Josef Katz, {Marketing Maestro} (Education Marketing and Direct Response Marketing) over 5 years ago

Bill, as always you have a ton of great ideas here!  Well laid out and lots of information.

Posted by Pippa Mac, The Woodlands TX Real Estate (Chevaux Group Realtor, The Woodlands and Spring) over 5 years ago

Joe Jane & Josef- Thanks. I love to keep a neat home myself. Every Spring I will make an extra effort just to make my home sparkle that little something extra.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Hi Bill,  There is also a nice bit of technology for baths involving changing the color of old outdated tubs/showers/sinks where they etch the surface and then redo the color.  Takes less than a day, uses the existing fixtures and looks excellent !

Posted by Bill Gillhespy, Fort Myers Beach Realtor, Fort Myers Beach Agent - Homes & Condos (16 Sunview Blvd) over 5 years ago

Pippa - Thanks a bunch!

Bill - That sounds excellent. I had not heard of that. Do you know how expensive it is?

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Bill - productive ideas as usual. Even when none of these things have to be done, it's SO important to get and keep the house CLEAN. It needs to look good, and to smell good. Like your suggestions on clutter, it's often about time rather than money.

Posted by Sharon Simms, St. Pete FL - CRS CIPS CLHMS RSPS (Coastal Properties Group International) over 5 years ago

Great information! Thank you for sharing! I wish all sellers would listen to this advice!!!

Posted by ANGIE MCGHEE, Broker Associate, REALTOR (Long & Foster - Rocky Mount) over 5 years ago

Great info, Thanks! Will keep this in mind to forward this to some my sellers.

Posted by Bettina Settles, Your Indiana Connection (Settles Team) over 5 years ago

Good idea's! Every spring I do some updating for my home, that way it won't cost so much in the event I do decide to sell my house. Just 1 major project makes the house feel new again, and me too.

Bonnie

Posted by Bonnie Randklev (McCormick Realty) over 5 years ago

Great info, and always good to hear this type of advice from a third party. Reblogged :)

Posted by Richard & Carol DeGrace, Mortgage Loan Officers NJ 609-209-3700 (1st Colonial Community Bank | Bank - New Jersey) over 5 years ago

Bill -  Timely and certainly advantageous for any seller to read these. It will bring them more money in their pockets in the end. Glad to see you'ved moved on from the debacle the other day. :-)

Back To work. lol

Posted by Robert Hammerstein, Bergen County NJ Real Estate (Keller Williams Valley Realty) over 5 years ago

Bill ! - Talk about perfect timing ! - The weather seems to be warming up, and the traditional spring activity is almost upon us. This was a very easy to read, easy to implement post, and sellers are going to appreciate the guidance. Very nice B !

Cheers !

Sheldon

Posted by Sheldon Neal, That British Agent Bergen County NJ (Bergen County, NJ - RE/MAX Real Estate Limited) over 5 years ago

A little bit every year will keep it in good shape so you don't have to do it all at once when you decide to sell.

Posted by Terry & Bonnie Westbrook, Westbrook Realty - Grand Rapids Forest Hills MI Re (Westbrook Realty Broker-Owner) over 5 years ago

Bill,

This is a very timely post with loads of good information for sellers.

Posted by Don Rogers, Realtor, Broker, CDPE, GRI, OnullFallon MO & St Charles County MO homes (Keller Williams Realty Chesterfield) over 5 years ago

Hello Mr. Bill, All I have to say is how much I agree with decluttering. All your suggestions were great but an inviting entrance and decluttering have to be on the top of my list. Similar to telling buyers to pack away the things they rarely use.

Posted by Lisa Glowacki, Real Estate Broker - RI & MA (Lisa Glowacki - Rhode Island & Massachusetts) over 5 years ago

Now if we can just get our sellers to do all of your great suggestions. I do know they are a little more likely to do it in this buyers market. I liked all of your suggestions.

Posted by Susan Sawyer, Real Estate Expert - Hudson Ohio (Keller Williams Chervenic Realty) over 5 years ago

Great information Bill - I especially like the lighting and De-cluttering comments. Those are two things that don't cost anything and that you don't really notice if they are both addressed. But if they are overlooked and not addressed, it's usually a big negative that most times sends a showing down hill.

Posted by Greg Miller, Warsaw Ind. Home Loans - Conventional,FHA,USDA,VA (Ruoff Home Mortgage ) over 5 years ago

Bill I am not in the market to sell right now, but you gave me some fantastic idea for my spring "honey do" list.  Wonder how it will work out for me?

Posted by Tammy Lankford, Your Lake Sinclair Expert (706-485-9668) (Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668) over 5 years ago

Bill, 

First off, I love all your blog articles. I follow them when I get your shouts on digg.com (anyone who has digg needs to be-friend this guy). Secondly, great post. My comment is an additional recommendation to the "Fill Up The Baths" section. I have some clients that do some house flipping. A cheap fix for gold showers is said to be rustoleum texturized oil rubbed bronze spray paint. Simply mask, spray, and you have a decent looking fake oil rubbed bronze fixtures instead of gold (which many think is very outdated).

Just my 2 cents!

Keep up the great work!

-Tap

Posted by David Tapper (Cashin Company Realtors) over 5 years ago

You are so right.  I have one under contract now that my buyers were shocked at the pristine condition.  It sold the house over houses with more square feet, more yard space and lower prices.  An immaculate house sells itself.

 

Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Bill - Great post !  Great tips !  Even if a seller does a few of these suggestions it really can make a difference.  If a seller does them all, they really want to sell their house !  On a side note, hopefully this great post will not be plagiarized !!!  I will keep an eye out for you : )   ~ Chris

Posted by Christopher and Stephanie Somers - Realtors - Philadelphia Real Estate (Realtor / Owner - RE/MAX Access) over 5 years ago

Second article I've seen on the blog today addressing this issue.

Posted by Norma Brandsberg (Marks Realty Co. Inc., Lynchburg, VA, 540-586-9496) over 5 years ago

The front door is one of the most overlooked items when folks spruce up their home but it is extremely important. Glad you brought it up.

Posted by Cameron Wilson, The Short Guy - Murrieta,Temecula,Menifee California (Labrum Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Thanks everyone for all your terrific comments on the more cost effective things you can do when selling your home. Sometimes it is the little things that make the biggest difference.

Dave - I have never heard of that idea before. I guess this kind of finish must be pretty water resistant. Thanks for the compliments on my article as well.

Tammy - I am assuming your honey may be doing a few things this Spring:)

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Hello Bill-These are all excellent tips. Now if the sellers would take this great advice probably more homes would sell. CONGRATS on the feature. Very well deserved. Enjoy your evening. :-)

Posted by Sharon Lee (Sharon Lee's Virtual Assistance) over 5 years ago

Good Ideas all Bill, when I sell one of my rentals I change the toilets all the knobs on the cabinets, new appliances, paint and carpet. I have a good success ratio but cannot get my sellers to play the game.

Posted by Charles Stallions, 800-309-3414 - Pensacola, Pace or Gulf Breeze, Fl. (Charles Stallions Real Estate Services ) over 5 years ago

You only get one chance to make a good first impression. We tell potential sellers that showing their home is much like their house going on a job interview ~ you may only have one shot ~ you need to bring it A GAME from the beginning. You wrote a great post. Well written and straight to the point.

Posted by Sandy Childs, Realtor - Spartanburg, SC (Keller Williams Realty) over 5 years ago

Bill, Excellent post. I just hope that the sellers will take your advise. Reblogging! Thanks

Posted by Gail Szeluga, Manalapan, Marlboro & Monmouth County (Weichert Realtors-Marlboro, Manalapan) over 5 years ago

Sandy - You are right about 1st impressions. I have seen homes that can be totally transformed by just a little paint.

Sharon, Charles, Gail - Thanks for the compliments on my article. You know that a seller that listens is a smart seller and will more than lucky see a SOLD sign outside quicker than the folks that don't think these things are important.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Great post Bill but I have to say that painting "builder beige" is almost as bad as painting a room white in my opinion.  It usually gives a lower end look -- I really recommend a slightly darker shade of beige - it looks much more contemporary and gives a richer feel.  Paint choices can be difficult - I've read up to 40% of paint purchased at big box stores disappoints purchasers (color wise not quality).

Posted by Margaret Oscilia, Home Stager, Salem Oregon (Creative Concepts-Home Staging and Contracting, Salem Oregon) over 5 years ago

Margaret I would have to say that it depends on what color was there previosly. If the room was an uglly shade of purple or some old wall paper from the 70's builders beige would still be a big improvement. Personally I like the darker earth tones myself.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Bill, What an excellent post for the seller who is preparing their home for sale or the homeowner who just wants to spruce their home up this spring. A fresh coat of paint and removing clutter can make the difference in a home selling or not.  Reblogging for the Lynchburg market, thanks!

Posted by Debbie Malone, From Lynchburg To The Lake (434) 546-0369 (Londeree's Real Estate & Property Management) over 5 years ago

HI Bill!  Excellent list for sellers and for homeowners looking to spruce up for the spring and possibly prepare for a 2010 sale!  As for the brass--I worry lately that I've been telling buyers that they can very easily change out the brass because it's been out for so long that I fear it may be coming back again soon!!!  LOL

Congrats on the little gold star too!

 

Debe in Charlotte

Posted by Debe Maxwell, Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods (www.AtHomesCharlotte.com | Savvy + Company Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Bill, I loved your post because it is very true.  Many of the things you mentioned are Feng Shui principles that we would concentrate on as well...color choices, the front door, DE-CLUTTER, lights.

They are wonderful because they aren't expensive and everything that you mentioned can have a huge impact on a buyer.  Great Feature, thank you.

Posted by Laura Cerrano, Authentic Feng Shui Expert (Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island) over 5 years ago

Nice post.  Great photos.  Good information for the sellers too.  I just previewed a home that has all the latest upgrades.  It should sell fast.  They had already reading the internet and found all the right information.

Posted by Kay Van Kampen, RealtorĀ®, Springfield Mo Real Estate (RE/MAX Broker, RE/MAX Solutions) over 5 years ago

Great post Bill. I tour the property with the seller(s) prior to listing it on the market to create a punch list of items that the seller(s) should focus on, within their ability, finances, etc. Most folks are receptive to the feedback...they'd rather hear it from me than from a prospective buyer as a negative.

Posted by Samantha Nichols, Massachusetts Real Estate Specialist (ERA Belsito and Associates) over 5 years ago

Bill great advice, and boy am I glad that I don't have a gold toilet and shower, mine are green :)

Posted by George Souto, Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert (George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages Connecticut) over 5 years ago

Debbie, Debe, Kay and Sam - Thanks for your thoughts on getting a home ready for sale and some of the lower cost improvements you can do to have more success.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

George - LOL. Did you think going Green meant your toilets and sinks:)

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

This would make a good flyer (which I'm sure you've already thought of...). 

Posted by Jeff R. Geoghan, REALTOR, Marketing VP & Real Estate Agent Coach (Coldwell Banker Select Professionals) over 5 years ago

Nice tips. That stat that I heard was that 9 out of 10 people can't see past the decor of a house to determine its potential. That's a huge number! Sellers need to remember that and buyers need help to see past the obvious chintz wallpaper, etc.

Posted by Rebecca Brooks (HotSpot Property) over 5 years ago

Bill you mean it isn't??? ........ LOL

Posted by George Souto, Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert (George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages Connecticut) over 5 years ago

Bill - great post, I was just about to copy and paste the whole post, then I saw the reblog arrow - I think I was number 8.  :)

Thank you.

Posted by Virginia Hepp, Mesquite NV Homes and Neighborhoods - Search MLS (ERA - Mesquite NV Homes For Sale) over 5 years ago

Bill: We sold a house last year in just 3 days. The seller priced it right, neutralized all the colors, including pulling down the dated wallpaper in the kitchen, had an upfront home inspection, fixed everything that needed fixing on the inspection and got a great price for their house! WOW, this stuff that we tell sellers really works.

Posted by Sandy Childs, Realtor - Spartanburg, SC (Keller Williams Realty) over 5 years ago

Great article.  I have a wholesaler I refer people to for new hardware.  A friend repainted her hardware.  It did work.  They were gold and she painted spray painted them with the oiled brown type finish look.  I was impressed!  Habitat Re-Store and Craig's List are great bargain hunting places for supplies.

Posted by Betty Saenz, EcoBroker GRI SRES (Sky Realty, Austin, Texas) over 5 years ago

Good information with a nice twist of humor.  I know the golds and orange's are coming back...but certainly not in the same fashion.  Simple things that can make a huge difference. 

Posted by Holly Ivy-Wyllie (Keller Williams Portland Premiere) over 5 years ago

Bill, great article! You have really covered all the bases for sellers. If they follow your tips they are sure to get a quick sale and a great price for their property!

Posted by Annie Pinsker-Brown, Stage to Sell, Los Angeles Home Stager (Stage to Sell - LA Home Staging) over 5 years ago

Sound advice Bill. This is true in all markets. In a buyer's market, these things can mean the difference between success and failure.  In a seller's market, it can mean the difference between getting multiple offers and selling over list price versus a typical outcome.  Well presented, solid, factual and proven concepts.  Sellers would do well to heed your advice.

Posted by Chris Olsen, Broker Owner Cleveland Ohio Real Estate (Olsen Ziegler Realty) over 5 years ago

When your REALTOR comes to photograph your house, shut the damn toilet lid.  If you don't it might just end up in a blog :)

Posted by Erik Hitzelberger, Louisville - Middletown Real Estate (RE/MAX Alliance - Louisville REALTOR-Luxury Homes) over 5 years ago

Bill -  great back-to-basics kind of info for home sellers. Your timing is great as Spring is just around the corner. I like to tell my clients that when painting to not go all white. I like how you mention Earthy colors - absolutely - or just reach for the most current Pottery Barn catalog and see what they are going with. Nice feature!

Posted by Kim Daugherty, d + b real estate, McKinney, TX REALTOR Broker/Owner (www.RealFamilyRealEstate.com) over 5 years ago

Brilliant advice Bill.  Know for a fact that in todays economy ALL real estate agents need to be equipped with the skills and knowlege to guide their sellers through the process of preparing a home for sale.  Realisticallt, not many sellers have have the budget for 'professional' staging.....

Posted by Andy Capelluto (International School of Staging) over 5 years ago

Great post - I would add eliminating popcorn ceilings! - Erika

Posted by Corey & Erika Kahler (The Cascade Team) over 5 years ago

Thanks everyone for all you great comments. I have learned about a few things I didn't know about in regards to painting fixtures, ect.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Thanks Bill - great list as everyone has said already.  It does make a great to do list too...  well presented.

Posted by Lee & Pamela St. Peter, Making Connections to Success in Real Estate (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices YSU Realty: (919) 645-2522) over 5 years ago

Bill, I do have another item to add to your list.  Have your Sellers drop a "nice" note to their neighbors letting them know the house will be going on the market. That way the neighbors have the head-up to get THEIR yards in shape.  After all, a higher sales price brings greater value to the neighbors' homes as well.

Dear Neighbor:  (FIRST DRAFT)

     You may have noticed a lot of activity at our house lately.  We are preparing our home for sale this Spring and want to give you some notice so you can take down your Christmas lights and rake up those leaves you never got to last Fall. There's a collection of white paper (could it be napkins?) and wrappings from fast food (beer cans too) all over your yard.  Winter is pretty much over, so you can take the snow shovels off the front porch. And don't forget that collection of winter boots! Actually, we were wondering about that car up on cinderblocks. At least it can't be running over all those tricycles and bikes!

      If you need help, let us know.  Here's a list of church and scouting groups that will come out to the house and give you a hand.  And here's a list of charities that will come and haul off that vehicle and give you a tax donation receipt.

      Thanks for being our neighbor for this past while.  Here is your chance to pick your next neighbor, so if someone comes to mind, let us know! Sincerely, (etc)

Posted by ELIZABETH VALLANCE (Long and Foster Real Estate Services Inc) over 5 years ago

Dear Bill, I just thought of another improvement that's very important. If the house qualifies for LeadBased paint disclosure, then all peeling paint should be scraped off and repainted. Black/green mold outside as well as inside should be sprayed down with a Clorox-mix, but Borax is better (I learned that in a GRI class). No point flunking a Home Inspection if you don't have to!

Posted by ELIZABETH VALLANCE (Long and Foster Real Estate Services Inc) over 5 years ago

Bill, excellent post as always! I especially agree with "painting the door." My experience is that it can really be a huge transformative touch, that is really inexpensive. Thanks for sharing your insight.

Posted by Amber Noble Garland, CEO & Team Leader of A NOBLE HOME TEAM, and COO of The Egypt Sherrod Real Estate Group (Strategic Marketing Expert & Relocation Specialist in NJ, GA and nationwide!) over 5 years ago

Pam - Thanks for the compliments on how to present a home!

Elizabeth - I love your thought about making sure the neighbors have kept up their yard. I am not sure sending the letter would be the best approach though. You may find your car on blocks - LOL I would feel much more comfortable having a face to face.

Amber - Thanks. The front door does say a lot about what you will find behind it.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Great post, well put together.  Every agent should give this to sellers in a listing package and maybe the quality of the homes on the market will look better.

Posted by DeAndrea "Dee Dee" Jones, The Northern VA Real Estate Lady (Home Buyers Marketing II, Inc.) over 5 years ago

Hi Bill! And, oops!! My "letter" (#88) was just playing around and having some fun. I surely wouldn't insult a neighbor like that.  I'm sorry it came across differently.

Posted by ELIZABETH VALLANCE (Long and Foster Real Estate Services Inc) over 5 years ago

Bill, What a fantastic post! I don't understand why some sellers don't do any of these things and think there house is going to sell!

Posted by Kristi DeFazio, Colorado Springs Rea lEstate 719-459-5468 (RE/MAX Advantage) over 5 years ago

Boy do I have a Seller that needs to see this!  Thanks for the excellent post.

Posted by Tricia Pearson, Real Estate Broker, San Antonio/Hill Country Homes for Sale (Tricia Pearson - Pearson Real Estate - Texas Hill Country) over 5 years ago

Hi Bill - Great post on all of the things sellers should be doing if their home is currently on the market or if they are thinking of selling.  Heck....they're great tips for anyone who needs to start doing a little spring cleaning and sprucing up of their home.   With the nice weather we've had lately, there's a couple of tips in there I may be doing this weekend! :)

Posted by Donna Bigda, Greater New Haven CT Real Estate (RE/MAX Alliance) over 5 years ago

Carrie and Kathy SampronBill:  I loved this post.  Great information and your post looks great as well.

Posted by Carrie Sampron, ABR SFR & Kathy Sampron (303) 931-3629 Highlands R (Home Smart Realty Group) over 5 years ago

Pearson, Donna, Carrie & Kathy - Thanks for your compliments on my article about low cost home improvement when selling your home. These little things do make a big difference as I am sure your know:)

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Nice post, Bill. Wouldn't it be wonderful if all of our sellers did these things, as needed?

Posted by Kelsey Barklow, 423/948-9154, Marne Drinnon 423/202-2277 (Evans & Evans Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Hi Bill - great summary of ideas for getting your home ready to sell, and great timing, with Spring coming on, a lot of people in our area will be getting ready to sell. We'd like to reblog your post :)

Posted by LifeOhm, Monica at LifeOhm (LifeOhm - Life Coaching for Real Estate Professionals) over 5 years ago

Kelsey & Monica - Thanks for your compliments on my article about low cost home improvements!

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Good advice in the article and in the comments. It is amazing how just a few little things at times can make such a big difference!

Posted by Linda Davis (RE/MAX Realty Group) over 5 years ago

Linda - The little things do make a big difference and the sellers who are in tune to this are usually the ones that will find themselves with a sold sign out in the front lawn.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Great information. Thanks for doing such a great job.

Posted by Andree Huffine (Coldwell Banker Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Thanks Andrea! I appreciate the compliments on some of the better low cost improvements for your home.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) over 5 years ago

Thanks for the article.Your article was pretty informative and i hope that in future also i get these kind of article.

Thanks,
Portable Storage,
www.moveablecubicle.com

Posted by Portable Storage almost 5 years ago

This blog does not allow anonymous comments