Tips for Sellers


Pricing Your Home
With good exposure for your listing, the thing that can impact the time it takes for your home to sell most is the price. Price is 80% of your marketing efforts with your home on MLS. The first 3 weeks of your listing is very important because it may be the most active time of the listing. Because the listing is new, people who have been looking and seen everything else will want to see something new if it meets their criteria. If you do not get enough showings in the first 3 weeks of your listing, there is a good chance it’s because the price you have set for your home is too high.
The closer you are to the top dollar value of your home, the less of the market share at that price will want to see your home. You can imagine that if your price is even a little higher you will get an even smaller percentage of those people coming to see your home.
To help you set a price for your home request a CMA or Comparative Market Analysis. It will give you what other houses in your neighborhood have sold for, what features they have like a pool, yard size,updated appliances and more that can give your home more or less value depending on the condition of your home. Updating your home can help the value but be carefull not to upgrade your home over the neighborhood because you can not recover your cost. If a house similar to yours has sold for $200,000 at the highest end, dont expect to get $230,000 no mater how many improvements you have done. Pools generally add about $15,000 to your value not the full cost of the pool. Lot size can affect price. A larger lot can add value or a lot in a bad location can lower your value.   
If you find your thinking of lowering the price, a good rule of thumb that some realtors use is to lower the price about once every 4 to 6 weeks and for about 3 to 5%.
When thinking about your price, people think it is good to set a number that hits just below an even number because of impression. For example, $249,995 they think looks better than $250,000. Most buyers look in blocks of even number like 250,000 to 300,000 because many website block listings in that way. If you price your house at 249,995 your only $5 off the mark but they will miss your house because you didn’t fall in that price range specified.
Photos Of Your Home
Pictures or the lack of pictures posted on your listing can significantly impact the number of showings and marketing your home. Listings with no pictures or not enough more often get passed up and on to the next home.
More quality pictures will generate more interest. The pictures will be your first impression and you want to make a good one so that the buyers want to come and see more of your home.
You may want to show good details of things about your home that you feel is a selling point of your home. That might be a great stair case, stone fireplace, upgraded appliances or lighting or well landscaped backyards.
Pictures should be taken with well light rooms. Natural lighting is better than using a flash. Don’t take pictures in a vertical format as that will not post well on the MLS listing. Pictures should be wider not taller. Also pictures should notbe too large as they will take too long to load up. A ratio of 4:3, pixels of 640X480 and of about 72 dpi is sufficient. You may want to show good details of things about your home that you feel is a selling point of your home.
Important places to include on your gallery of pictures include the kitchen, living areas, master bedroom, dining rooms, foyer, front of the house, and backyards.
If your home is larger than 4,000 sq ft you may want to consider a virtual tour. If your home is smaller than 3,000 there is no need to consider one at all.
Preparation For Showings
If a realtor is going to show your home, it is best if you leave the home because a buyer will feel that they can look through the house more freely and be able to talk about what they think to others. A realtor can be more affective in pointing things out and handling objectives if they can talk to the buyer. If you are there they may want to leave sooner than later.
It may be hard to do but try to keep the house kept in order because you may not get that much notice before a showing and little time to run around and clean up. It’s important that the kitchen is clean, no dishes in the sick. Also the bathroom must be clean.  Pick up clutter, cloths, toys and make the bed.
Turn on the lights and open the windows to let in light. A brighter house shows better than a darker house.
If you have anything special that you want a realtor to do or know when at your home, let CSS (Centralized Showing Services) know. That might be gate codes, security alarms, info about a pet etc…
If you have jewelry, guns, cash or anything else of value around the house, it is best to lock them up and out of sight during a showing. When you get back from a showing it’s a good idea to check windows and doors just to make sure that they are not left open or unlocked.
If you have pets you may want to have a place to keep them like a room, backyard,  neighbor or just take them with you if you can. Some people are allergic to animals or don’t feel comfortable with them so in any case be sure to let CSS know about them.
Staging Your Home
Staging is important because it sets the look and feel of your home. You need to give a good first impression. If you get a lot of showing appointments but you do not get any offers or they don’t even come into the house, you need to see what they are objecting to. Good staging upfront may avoid some of those issues unless it is due to price.
Since your planning on moving, this might be a good time to start packing and get rid of the clutter. That would include extra toys or personal things like pictures. You want the buyer to be able to imagine the home as theirs instead of being distracted with things that reminds them that they are in some ones house. Look at model homes for examples.
You want to remove excessive furniture so the house does not look too small for its contents.
Clean your window, walls and have the carpets cleaned.
Repair things that you can so that the house looks well maintained. Show pride of ownership.
Clean out closets and organize things. The impression of low storage space is not ideal.
Make sure the house smells good. You don’t want people saying what’s that smell. This will be particularly important if you have pets or cook a lot of unusual foods. 
The front and back yards will be the first impression people will have when they come to your home so make sure it sets a good one. Look at your front and backyards and see that the grass is cut and no weeds. You may want to add some new fresh plants or flowers. Repair the fence if there are holes or missing parts. For some buyers the yard will tell people how well you have maintained your home.
Other Information Important To Keep In Mind
If you are involved with a transaction or negotiations and have communication with the buyer’s agent please keep in mind that while they may treat you fair and honestly, they do not represent you or your best interest. If you have questions or need to ask for help, its best you don’t look to them for advice.
Keep in mind that anything you may tell the selling agent or broker pertaining to your home or property, they can convey that information to the buyer. Be mindful of what you say that will not place you at a disadvantage during negotiations. If you need assistance with any responses in negotiations or filling out any documents we suggest you do not ask the selling agent. It would be best to ask your agent or an attorney with any assistance you may need.
Be sure to check out our Free Reports and Sellers Advice page with more details on the preparation of your home and other helpful information.