Fall in New England is one of the most lucrative seasons to sell a home. In fact, this time of year tends to generate more serious buyers and sellers who are looking to complete transactions before winter sets in and the holidays are here. Subsequently, fall real estate transactions can happen more quickly than during other time of the year.
These simple projects will get your home noticed by serious buyers and give you an advantage over other homes in your price range.
1. Fall Yard Clean Up
Make your home's curb appeal a priority. A pleasing impact from the road attracts more buyers who are willing to come inside.
- Rake dead leaves.
- Cut back bushes and trees blocking windows and paths.
- Clean out your gardens. (Don't forget to edge them.)
- Add a pop of color to walkways and entryways with long-blooming “mums” or a pumpkin display.
2. Make the Windows Sparkle
Even if your windows appear clean, wash them inside and outside. This will make your house shine and create a positive impact from every angle. Another option: remove your screens altogether. This makes for a cleaner look and brings more light into your home.
3. Your Home Should Smell as Fresh as it Looks
Cold weather means closed windows. There are a few things you can do to keep your inside air from smelling stale.
- Change your furnace filter. Check the HVAC before you turn on the furnace. Better yet, schedule your yearly service and furnace cleaning now. When service is complete, have your provider leave a sticker or magnet behind to indicate to buyers your system is in tip top shape.
- Vacuum out the fireplace.
- Clean carpets and floors.
- Dust all surfaces.
- If you have pets, make sure to rid your home of any lingering pet odors.
4. Clear Away Clutter
Clean, clean, and clean again. Potential buyers want to visualize themselves living in your home. The best way for them to do so is to remove your personal belongings.
- Take down family photos
- Clear off shelves and counter tops.
- Box up collectibles, stacks of books, toys, and knick knacks.
- If you have hardwood floors, remove rugs to highlight them.
5. Light It Up
The days are shorter and the sun sets earlier in the fall. Open the curtains. Turn on the lights. Illuminate dark rooms. Consider adding floor lamps to lighten darkened corners. Change out your light bulbs. Daylight bulbs work well in the living spaces and soft white bulbs make bedrooms feel cozy. Don't forget to check that your closet lights are working.
6. Get a Pre-Inspection
Hire your own expert to pre-inspect your home and stay a step ahead of the buyer's home inspection. If you discover problems, you can fix them before your home goes on the market. Subsequently, you'll be more confident when it comes time to price your home.
7. Price your Home to Sell
Pricing your home is both an art and a science. Achieving the optimal price is the result of objective research into comparable properties and a professional understanding about the current market. Hire a real estate professional who will guide you through the basic steps for determining the right price.
8. Photograph the Property ASAP
Take professional real estate pictures as soon as possible. The earlier in the fall they’re taken the better the natural light will be and the nicer your outdoor spaces will look. Plus, if you decide to sell in the spring instead, you'll have beautiful pictures ready to go.
Selling your home in the fall market can sometimes add extra stress. Buyers may want faster turn-around times in order to move in before winter or the holidays. While this is certainly possible, there is still just as much work to do. The most important step for a successful fall sale is hiring a real estate professional who you know and trust, and who will guide you through every step of the process. A real estate professional who understands the process will bring you smoothly through the finish line.
When it's all said and done, no matter what time of year you decide to sell the ultimate key is being prepared. Click here for a complete list of how the right agency will successfully market your home. And, download this free guide to prepare your home for a successful sale.