How to sell your home, yourself!It's been quite a while since my last post. I'm not at all diligent with this, but hope to pursue a better job at it. Seth and I have been pretty busy since the last time I spoke over 2 years to be exact. Since that time, we had remodel a bathroom, painted the exterior of our house (totally transformed it) and then... we sold it last May. It was only on the market for about a month.
So my tip today is how to sell your home yourself.
I've put together somethings that I felt helped sell my home but first I will give you the quick scoop and had to sell it your self effectively.
1. Get all the information and pictures needed to add to a listing online.
2. Get an awesome sign made. (we went to a local sign shop and had them make us a metal sign. It said "House for Sale" and had our phone number on it. It was Blue with white letters and we also had one mad for the road to turn onto our road that just said "For Sale by Owner" in the same color scheme.)
3. Create a listing on Zillow. Click on this link: http://www.zillow.com/for-sale-by-owner/
4. When you have completed the listing on Zillow, it will ask if you want to add it to the MLS. CLICK YES! This was about $500 and I had to pay half of commission to a realtor if they brought their client to my home but you select the percentage you will offer. Doing this puts your listing on Forsalebyowner.com, Realtor.com, the MLS, Truilia, MSN Realty, and probably others. It's great exposure. We had a lot of showings come from this option. Ultimately what sold our home was the sign on the street and in the front yard. A realtor was driving their client to showings already set up and they stubbled upon our sign and they ultimately purchased our home.
5. Get good color print paper for your handouts at the street. Most people taking them will be neighbors but, you never know who is going to grab one. Make it look professional with an attractive color scheme, good clear pictures. Keep your information clear and concise and most importantly show the price, square footage, number or beds and baths and acreage. Pick out a few of your best pictures. Here is my flyer.
6. Schedule an open house if you want. You can schedule an open house through Zillow and the other sites.
Preparing your home for a sale
Before you put your home on the market:
1. Make sure that you have fixed any repairs. If your hope has major flaws to the eye, people won't be interested AT ALL.
2. Paint any rooms that are not appealing to most buyers.
3. A lot of buyers will like that you home could or is kid friendly, but let's be honest, you're not going to fall in love with a home with stickers all over the bedroom wall, bright fish on the shower current or a fair princess mural on one huge wall.
4. DECLUTTER!!!! more junk you have in your home the less attention buyers will be paying to your home but your stuff. It's called your style for a reason, it is your taste, not everyone else's. Make your home as neutral as possible. Put stuff in Storage if you have to. You want your home to feel as open as possible. Your home may not be large but making it feel as large as possible makes for a better sale. If you create the illusion that your home it large and spacious, It will reel in most buyers.
5. Stage your home! Stage your home for potential buyers. In our home it was just my husband and I in a 2100 Sq Ft home. I used one of the spare rooms as my home office and the other as a guest room. We had a bonus room upstair that was a gym area and another sleeping space for guests. That layout worked great for us, but not for selling a home. It appears we don't have enough rooms. The average family needs at least 3 bedrooms and 2 baths. A bath for the parents and a bath for the Children and each child their own room. I moved my office upstairs in the bonus room for the time being. Kept my workout space in tact but organized and set up both spare rooms to be bed rooms, one to look like a guest room and one to look like a kids room but not too childish. The children's room had a lofted bed (was my husbands and his brothers growing up) with an accent chair, nightstand and lamp under it. We put a twin bed in that room, because of the layout. A large bed made the room look too small and odd shaped. Although both rooms were the same size, the placement of windows, doors and closet made it difficult to position furniture. If you or your spouse love to have the single recliner directly in front of the tv and all other furniture pieces have to function around that one piece, then you need to give that up for a little bit so that you can sell your home. People will look at that and think, "Oh, no! Where will I put my furniture. Arrange it so that they don't have to think too hard about that and just about how they feel, the price and the major perks to your home.
6. Clean your home. Clean it inside and out. If it's dirty on the inside, people will only think about how disgusting it is instead of how they could be happy and at home there. Clean up the outside. Give the house a good wash down. Paint any windows, trim, or doors that are looking shabby. Pressure wash your deck and porch. Clean away the spider webs. No one wants to walk into your home thinking a bug could drop on them at any moment.
7. Create Curb appeal. Make your home looks inviting from the outside. get a matching color scheme for pillows, wreaths, door mats, etc. Make sure to pick something that would ultimately appeal to both men or women, so keep it simple and neutral. (I had two rockers on the front porch with a yellow striped pillow on each. It was cheerful yet simple and welcoming, with a basic welcome mat at the front). I probably spent $100 over the entire month we had our home for sale, between the curb appeal decor and the fresh flowers I kept in a vase on the kitchen island for each week it was on the market.
8. Matching appliances. We completed our appliances about 2 weeks before we listed our house. We had a dishwasher and microwave that did not match the refrigerator and stove we had bought a couple years prior. If you can afford to do this, I think it helps be cause it looks good. It's all about the first impression someone gets when they see it for the first time. If a buyer doesn't care about that, well good for you, but if they do, that may be a lost sale.
Ultimately we had a great experience doing this. We sold our home for $4,000 below what we were asking. However, we priced knowing that everyone wants to negotiate and so the price we sold settled on was what we wanted in the end of the process.
Good luck to you in selling your home!