Northern Virginia Association of Realtors offers six ideas to make the most of the local market
With most home moves occurring between April and September, it’s the perfect time for homeowners to start preparing to sell their homes, according to the Northern Virginia Association of Realtors – which has released six tips for helping sellers get ready.
“You want to be sure to do everything in your power to get top dollar for your home,” said Ryan McLaughlin, CEO, NVAR, that serves as the voice for real estate in Northern Virginia, representing 14,000 members and more than two million residents. “And that means working with a Realtor® who knows the marketplace and your specific neighborhood. It also means taking the time to do some advance work to make your home shine.”
It’s been a seller’s market in Northern Virginia because, as in most of the country, because of a lack of housing inventory. To command a higher sales price, homeowners need to make sure their house shows well. Here are six tips from Northern Virginia Association of Realtors and their members to help sellers position their homes – often their largest investment – to garner more interest from homebuyers:
Make it personal, but not too personal. You want some personality in your home but not to the point that buyers can’t picture themselves living in your house. For example, leave plants, but put the family photos away.
Keep clutter to a minimum. To show off the best assets of your home, including any architectural features, make sure to keep distracting items such as excess pillows or art on the walls to a minimum. And it goes without saying, hide items such as children’s toys, cables and wires, and a slew of small appliances sitting on your kitchen counters.
Deep clean. Make sure your home is as clean as possible. That includes emptying the trash and making sure that tissues are full. It also means cleaning the fridge, cabinets, drawers, closets, fan blades, oven and more. Serious buyers are likely to look in drawers and closets, so make sure every space is buyer ready.
Conduct the sniff test. For many people, sense of smell is our strongest of the five senses. That’s why when potential buyers walk into your home, it’s helpful for your home to smell like home. “We want buyers to think about their home nostalgically like memories of making cookies with their children or grandchildren,” said Alexandra Iamandi, Samson Properties and NVAR member. “Fresh flowers not only add a nice smell, but they also look good too.”
No pets. We love our pets but when selling a house, but not everyone feels the same. When getting ready for an open house or showing, put your pets out of sight and hide their toys and supplies. “Make sure your dog or cat is secure, preferably away from the home when potential buyers look at your home,” said Karlene Tolbert, Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate Premier, and NVAR member.
Do’s for day of the showing. Iamandi and Tolbert agree that on the day of the open house or showing, it’s the little things that matter. They advise sellers to make all the beds, close all toilet seats, turn on every light, open all the blinds, secure your valuables, and leave the house.