Repairs. Decluttering. Staging. Increasing curb appeal. Finding the right agent. All of these things will affect not only how fast your home sells, but the price you get for it — and naturally, you want that price to be as high as possible.
With all of these moving parts, it can be hard to know where to focus your attention and investments. Here are a few tips to help ensure that you are making the smartest financial decisions possible during your home sale.
Spend time and money making repairs and improvements that offer a high return on investment (ROI).
As a general rule, major improvements such as a kitchen renovation or bathroom overhaul do not give you a solid payoff when you’re selling your home. In other words, you likely won’t get back nearly what you put into the project. Projects of this scale often require a heavy investment that may not be valued properly by potential buyers.
Instead, focus your efforts on small, high-impact home improvement projects like these:
- Basic landscaping – 352% ROI
- Deep cleaning – 935% ROI
- Decluttering – 432% ROI
All of these efforts are relatively low-cost, which means they won’t blow your home repair budget.
As you declutter, let go of the items you no longer need.
Decluttering a home you’ve lived in for years is a time-intensive project, undoubtedly. However, it’s also an opportunity to make some extra money — especially if you find larger or more valuable items that you no longer need, like furniture in good condition or expensive watches or jewelry you never wear.
Selling on online forums like Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, or eBay is the easiest way to do this. If you price your items fairly, chances are you’ll find a buyer within a week or so.
Pay attention to any problems that will make the property hard to insure.
One thing that’s easy to overlook is your homeowners’ insurance and whether there are any issues that will make the property hard for the next owners to insure.
For example, many older homes have polybutylene piping, a type of plumbing pipe that can degrade over time and cause major leaks. If you bought your home several years ago, those pipes may have been grandfathered in by your insurance company — but once it sells, your buyer may have trouble getting insurance, which can hold up your sale or even make it fall through.
Loop in your homeowners insurance agent and your real estate agent to identify and remedy any issues like this that could trip up the insurance process.
Price your home correctly from the start.
Many home sellers seem to think that it’s in their best interest to price their home high, and come down over time.
This, however, is untrue. Instead of resulting in a higher final offer, it’s more likely to increase your days on market and scare away buyers. If your home is priced high, they may think you’re an unreasonable seller; if it languishes on the market for months, they’ll likely think there’s something wrong with it.
If you price it to sell from the start, however, you’re much more likely to attract a greater number of potential buyers, as well as attract multiple offers. You’re also more likely to attract reasonable cash offers, which can greatly speed up your time to closing because there’s no need for financing.
Staying financially savvy when selling your home requires paying attention to many different details at once. But if you know where to focus your attention, you’ll be on your way to getting a great offer on your home in no time.
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