1. The Numbers Matter
Do your homework, and know exactly what your home is worth. Setting a specific price will show prospective buyers that you know what you are talking about, and have invested in maintaining the quality of the home. Round numbers can make it seem like you have no idea what you’re doing. “$150k? That sounds about right!” If you and your agent conclude that your home is worth $196k, you might want to ask $206k.
In addition, avoid listing something using a whole mess of 9’s. “Our home is $299,999.99!.” People see through this and can make you seem gimmicky. This isn’t what people are looking for when making such a large purchase.
2. Engage the Senses
But not TOO much. Make people have that “WOW” feeling the minute they walk in the door.
You don’t need to burn your basil, rain, lavender blend incense. But you do want to make sure there is a light and pleasant smell throughout. People love the smell of a freshly cleaned home. Don’t go crazy with the bleach, but rather use something citrus or pine scented. These aromas are universally appealing, just don’t let them become overpowering.
As far as what people hear, keep music mild and low. Everyone has different taste, and you don’t want to subconsciously make buyers want to leave the room. Let the light in.
And always…. always, let the light in. Open the curtains, the blinds and turn on a light if you have to. Dark and shadowy places are often ignored.
3. Don’t Get Too Personal
Put away your vacation pictures and clean the paperwork off your desk. People don’t want to feel as if they are “intruding” on your space. Making them feel uncomfortable right from the get go, isn’t the best way to sell. You want to find the balance of making the house feel “homey” without feeling too specific. Think about a catalog shoot when you are staging. You don’t have to go overboard, but include some pieces of interest that aren’t excessively powerful. This will allow people to imagine themselves in the space, so make it warm and inviting.
This will also make the selling process easier for you. Putting your personal effects away will give you a headstart in leaving the place you’ve called home. Being emotionally ready to sell will make the whole process less stressful.
4. Throw a Party
It’s likely that the people coming to your open house have been to a few others just like it. Do something different, and have your open house in the evening or on a Sunday for a BBQ and a football game. This will bring in a whole new crowd and will definitely make your house stand out above the rest. If you show people a good time, they will be able to envision themselves living in the home, and enjoying it just as much as you do.
5. Love at First Sight
People decide if they are going to buy within the first few seconds of seeing your home. It is up to you to make those first few seconds count. Of course, there are always exceptions to this rule, but first impressions go a long way. If your yard is overgrown or messy, people aren’t going to feel a welcoming vibe. Make sure your yard is well groomed and take care of some easy cosmetic fixes. (New house numbers, a mailbox refresh or some paint touch-ups.)
You will also want to give some attention to your entry area and the places people see upon walking in. Add some flowers and make sure the lighting is on point. Don’t leave clutter around as this is often the place where shoes, backpacks and other miscellaneous items pile up.