I had licensed Realty Professional, Kim Sessions, in the studio the other Sunday and we talked about “everything houses.” In case you missed the full conversation, here were her tips for before putting your house on the market.
#1 – Declutter
Kim: Well, the first thing you should do…
Pete: …it’s called Kim sessions, right?
Kim: [laughs]. Well, yes. The first thing you should do — Which is everyone’s non favorite thing to do is declutter. Go through closets, depersonalized, things like that. It gets very overwhelming because you open a closet and you have a small closet and you take everything out and it fills the whole room. It’s amazing what we just shove in places. So, really it’s not really cost. That takes a lot for a lot of people their time.
Kim notes that it is important to declutter because it does take a lot of time, but also, could cost you money in the end.
Kim: You could have a house that wasn’t even updated but was super organized and clean and you would maximize and get a great price for it. You can have an updated house that was dirty and not organized and people view that as you don’t take care of your house and you will not get the maximum price. You can’t for your house.
#2 Fix the little things
Kim: I get this a lot. “Well, I’m going to leave a couple of these obvious things out because the inspector has to get, you know, ding a couple of things.” But the reality is, is if you take care of these things before you put it on the market and get a contract, you can have a handyman or you could do it yourself. When you start getting into your home being under contract per the contract, you do need to use a licensed contractor, which means you are most likely spending more money and frankly, buyers are walking in and they’re looking for things. So, if they see a ripped screen, that’s so easy and cheap to fix, you don’t want them to see that; you want them to walk through and see an immaculate house and they will be impressed. They will give a really great offer for that and just have the confidence that the house has been really taken care of.
#3 Stay neutral … when painting
Kim: So, a lot of people can’t visualize, so I do recommend to neutralize. I don’t go into every house and say you need to repaint your whole entire house, but if it’s a color that doesn’t really meet the mass, a lot of people will walk in and they can’t get past it. And painting is very easy fix. So, you know, the grays are the new neutrals right now. So, we really recommend sometimes it really will bring more money to the table by painting.
#4 Stay safe and use a Realtor
Kim: So, we’re actually seeing more for sale by owners right now because we are in a great market. But, it’s not as easy and as it is; there’s a system in place and there are strong statistics that show that you are leaving probably money on the table by not listing with a professional that does this on a daily basis.
You are also putting yourself in a safety situation. We are in the one of the most dangerous occupations; we have to really pay attention. We have to field out people, and really try to qualify them before we even meet them because I am putting myself in big jeopardy meeting a stranger. So, the safety is a huge factor.
#5 Save Valuable Time with a Realtor
Time. I mean, you’re taking a lot of time. You have to leave work to go open the house up buyers. I mean when they want to see a house, they want to see a house. So, not all of them are going and wanting to see it from 7 – 9 on the evenings or on the weekends. So, you really want to try sell your house, be available at all times.
#6 Have a game plan for post-sale
Kim: Sellers should have a game plan of where they’re going to go next. We are seeing this very often right now, where someone’s putting their house on the market and it’s going in a week or less. And a lot of people were like, “oh, we’ll just list it and see.” And they have nowhere to go or an idea. So, really kind of have an idea if you decide if you really want to sell your house…
#7 Crunch some numbers
Kim: I would say the financial part of selling a house, have an idea of what the closing costs are, what are the fees are, so you really know what your profit is at the end of the day and you have no surprises.
To listen to the full conversation, click here.
Check out Kim’s tips for homebuyers here!
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