By Michelle Gillespie, Realtor, Prudential Prime Properties
Home sellers today must convince a new era of buyers returning to the market that their homes stand for value and quality.
The time-honored open house event remains a terrific way to expose your property to many consumers and gain distinction from the competition. Remember, you only have one chance to make a first impression, so approach your open house event as your property's showcase.
Here are ways to make your property shine, inside and out.
Start with the Outside: Do a visual check of the front of the house from across the street. Does your property have curb appeal? It should look inviting, with a trimmed lawn, a flowerbed and a freshly painted front door. Polish door handles and knockers and replace worn items such as a rusty doorbell. Consider adding a new doormat and flowering plants at the entrance. Don's forget to wash your windows and clean any oil or rust spots from the driveway.
Be sure to inspect the side and back yards. Add some flowering plants to the back as well. Clean and rearrange the outdoor furniture to look inviting. Put away gardening tools, and tidy around the grill area.
Now Focus on the Inside: Where cleanliness, space, smell and lighting are vital. First get your house in tip-top condition by cleaning and clearing away clutter. Steam clean and vacuum the carpet. Make sure your floors are waxed and shiny. Touch up nicks on walls and make sure the porcelain sinks, tubs and metallic fixtures shine.
Be conscious of any lingering odors such as smoke, pets or strong-smelling foods. You may need to air out your home prior to your open house event. Consider grinding fresh lemons in the garbage disposal. And don's forget to empty all trash containers.
Look at your countertops in the kitchen and bathrooms and the tops of your bureaus. Do they seem cluttered? Clear away and store as much as possible. You want your home to seem spacious.
Next, Set the Mood: Let your prospective buyers picture your home as their own. Rearrange the furniture so that rooms look more spacious, or consider removing furniture and accessories.
Lighting is also important to creating a desirable atmosphere. Bright lights provide a cheerful environment and make a small space appear larger. Pull back all the drapes and open the blinds. Turn on all the lights. Make sure all light sockets have fresh bulbs. Use softer lights for rooms in which you want a warm, cozy feeling.
The Final Touch: Don's forget little touches such as fresh flowers, lighted candles in the bathrooms, new logs in the fireplace, or a bowl of fresh fruit on the kitchen counter. You may even want to set your dining-room table with color-coordinated table settings.
Three of my new listings recently had open houses.? The sellers followed my suggestions for these events and all three listings had accepted offers by the end of the weekend.
Capture Their Imagination: Home buying is steeped in emotion. Sellers shouldn's rely on buyers to use their imagination; they must capture buyers” imagination. Remember that buyers may see seven or eight homes in a single day. The most memorable home will be the one that seemed the brightest, the most spacious and the most cheerful.
Looking ahead, I had a very successful spring market with all of my inventory selling with many happy sellers, I anticipate another successful summer and fall real estate market. If you are thinking of selling or buying a house or relocating, call me, Michelle Gillespie, for all your real estate needs at 508-934-9818, or e-mail [email protected]. Visit my website at www.michellegillespie.com for more information.
An independently owned and operated broker member of BRER Affiliates Inc. Prudential, the Prudential logo and the Rock symbol are registered service marks of Prudential Financial, Inc. and its related entities, registered in many jurisdictions worldwide. Used under license with no other affiliation of Prudential.? Equal Housing Opportunity.