Selling Your Home - Alan Martin

Setting the Sales Price

Before we set the sales price of your house, I’ll run a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) that will show the listing price of similar houses in the area as well as the prices at which the houses actually sold. Additionally, the analysis will give us information about houses currently on the market and about houses that were on the market but never sold.

Next, I’ll ask you about your goals in selling the house. Everyone who sells a house has different goals that need to be factored in when calculating the selling price.

               *           Is your goal to get the maximum sales price for your house?
               *           If so, are you willing to have your house on the market for many months?
               *           Is your goal to sell your house quickly?
               *           If so, are you willing to sacrifice some of your potential profits to sell more quickly?
               *          Would you like to establish a balance between selling your house quickly and selling at the top end of market value?

Market conditions will play a role in setting the sales price of your house. I’ll factor in how quickly houses are selling in your area, interest rates, the strength of the school system, and finally whether it is a buyer’s or seller’s market.

I’ll then recommend a price at which to list your house to meet your goals in the local market.

Preparing Your House for Sale

One of the first things I will do before putting your house on the market is prepare your house for sale. I want to show your house off in its best light to maximize your earning potential. I will tour your house with the eye of a buyer - what works, what doesn’t work.

Curb Appeal 
Does your house have curb appeal? Can we give it a little more pizzazz to draw the buyer in? Would a bit of touch-up paint add dollars to the sale? What about the garden? Is the lawn in order and neatly edged? Are trees and bushes neatly pruned? Are flowers in bloom? If not, it may be time for a garden upgrade. Adding colourful annuals to the front garden will make a big difference. Remember, creating curb appeal will add dollars to your house’s final selling price.

Curb Appeal Checklist

1.           Inspect the outside ground. Remove any building materials, scrap wood, discarded household items, etc. from the property. Store garbage cans in the garage. 
          a.           Check the home from the roof line down. 
          b.           Is the roof free and clear from obstructions and moss? 
          c.           Are the gutters clear and neatly hung? 
          d.          Are the windows clean and free from obstructions (such as overgrown bushes or trees)? 
          e.          Are bushes, trees and shrubs neatly pruned?

2.            Inspect the condition of the paint or siding?

          a.          Is it time to power wash the siding?
          b.          Is touch up paint needed?
          c.          Is the front door in good shape?

3.           Do flower beds need an upgrade?

          a.         Are plants neatly pruned?
          b.         Is the bed free and clear of weeds?
          c.         Is the bed properly mulched?
          d.         Are flowers in bloom?

4.           Keep the lawn neatly groomed.

          a.         Is the lawn free from weeds?
          b.         Is the lawn free from grass clippings?
          c.         Is the lawn neatly edged?

Welcome Home

As I walk in the door of your house, I will ask myself, "Will this house say, ’Welcome home’ to a buyer?" Looking through the eyes of a buyer, I will recommend changes that will enhance sales appeal.

I’ll help you eliminate anything that gives the appearance of clutter. Countertops should be free and clear. Knickknacks, souvenirs, family photos, refrigerator artwork - it’s gone. We need to "de-personalize" the house so buyers can imagine it as their home.

Closets and cupboards should appear large and roomy. It’s time to make a donation to a local charity or store belongings at a friend’s or family member’s home.

Reviewing your home room-by-room, I will make recommendations that impact the sale. I’ll point out the pieces of furniture that should be removed, rooms that need new paint, carpet that needs to be changed, fixtures that need polishing, windows that need cleaning, and any other improvement that can easily be made to promote the sale.

Staging Your Home Checklist

1.            Remove all clutter from the house.
         a.         Are countertops free and clear?
         b.         Have you removed unnecessary furniture throughout the house?
         c.         Remove the art gallery and coupon collection from the refrigerator.

2.           Check the bathrooms.
         a.         Are the surfaces clean and clear?
         b.         Are shower curtains and doors hung properly?
         c.          Is the flooring clean and fresh?
         d.         Are towels neatly hung?

3.          Check the walls.
         a.         Is paint and wallpaper fresh and clean?
         b.         Are the walls free from holes? 
         c.         Are there any colours or objects on the walls that need to be removed?

4.          Check the floors. 
         a.         Is the carpet clean and free from stains? 
         b.         Are hard surface floors clean and free from stains?

5.          Check windows and window coverings. 
         a.         Are all the windows clean? 
         b.         Are draperies and blinds clean?

6.          Pet check. 
         a.         Are there any signs that this is a pet’s home? Be sure to clean and remove kitty litter, pet toys and bedding.

7.          How’s the aroma? 
         a.         Try to air out the home prior to showings. 
         b.          If air freshener is necessary, use well before showings as a consideration to those with allergies.

8.           Set the mood prior to showings.
         a.          Open draperies and blinds. 
         b.          Turn on the radio to a classical music station, set the volume on low.
         c.           If you have time, cook a batch of cookies to have the warm, welcoming aroma permeating the home.

Setting the Stage

Before the first buyer walks in your door, I’ll show you how to set the stage. We want to engage the buyer’s senses. Lighting is critical. We’ll draw back curtains, open blinds, change light bulbs and add lighting where needed to welcome the buyer. We’ll enhance the ambiance with music playing lightly in the background and insure a pleasing aroma emanates from every room.

Alan is from Cambridge England and is the Broker/Owner and CEO of Frontline Florida Realty Inc. He has been helping Clients (Mostly from UK) buy , sell and manage their Florida Home Since moving to Florida in 1999.

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