One very common question I get from customers is "how do I get my house ready to be put on the market?" As a local agent, I feel that it is my duty to give you some tips that will help you in your quest! I have been selling real estate in Guerneville for a while and have come across some area-specific things that will help with selling your home!
The first is your curb appeal! When you have a house that you are listing in the redwood forest most likely it has accumulated some fallen leaves and spider webs over the past few years. A good idea when you are selling your home is to get a leaf blower and make sure you blow away all of the debris that has ended up on your home. Following that with a power washer will give your home a little more sparkle and shine that will cause people to look twice! Also, it is a good idea to trim bushes and trees that are overgrown and pick up any children's toys, personal items or garbage that may be cluttering the outside of your home. Then take a rake and make sure the area is as level as possible so that it poses less of a hazard to people who come to view your home!
The next thing you should do is take all personal items such as personal photographs, books, trinkets, and your great grandmother's handmade quilt out of your Russian River home. This is important because these items represent you and your imprint on the home. The important thing to think about when selling a home is that you don't want someone to come in and see your imprint there, you want them to imagine what their imprint would look like there! Use this as an opportunity to get a head start on your packing!
The next thing to do is get your home organized!!! This is so important for a few different reasons. One reason is that when you get to your new home you don't want to have to sort through everything and organize it. You will want to set up your new home quickly and get back to living. Another reason is buyers are nosy! They will want to open closets and cabinets just to see what is in them. If everything is messy and things are falling out then they will get the idea that you are not taking care of your things so you probably didn't care for the house very well. If you have all your shoes lined up, shirts hanging the same direction, all of your cans and jars lined up and plates and cups stacked beautifully then they will see that you have taken the time and energy to take care of your belongings and therefore will believe that the home has also been well cared for.
Another good thing to remember here on the Russian River is less is more! If you have lots of furniture in your home remove a lot of it and put it into a storage unit for a short time. Leave enough items in each room to let people know what each room is used for. A good example would be to pack up all of your office supplies and your computer but to leave the desk and chair so that potential buyers can see that you have been using the space as your office.
One of the biggest problems that I have to face on a regular basis with homes for sale on the Russian River is personal property. If you have appliances, ceiling fans, chandeliers, planter boxes, etc that have sentimental value then remove and/or replace them before you put your home on the market. This is important because many times the buyer will think that the stunning chandelier in the dining room is part of the home and when they find out that it was a wedding present to the seller and will, therefore, be going with them, they get angry and the whole deal falls apart. It's a good idea to make sure that there is not an open gap in the ceiling where the chandelier used to be either, so you'll want to go to the hardware store and find a light fixture at a low cost and install that in place of the chandelier before you put your home on the market. This way what the buyer sees the buyer gets and there are no surprises.
Another thing that is good to do is to make minor repairs and do a deep clean. Make sure that if there a burned out light bulbs that they are replaced and that the carpets are cleaned. Clear away dust and spiderwebs and make sure that leaky faucets are repaired. It seems silly to fix a house that you are about to leave but in truth, you want to get top dollar for your home and you want someone to move in who will love it and grow attached to it the way you did. Making it beautiful before you pass it on will help you to accomplish both tasks.
The last and final thing you should do before you put your home on the market is detach. This is by far the hardest part for a seller. This has been your home for some time and you have made memories in it and have grown attached to it. It is always a little bit scary to make a change like selling a home and that fear is always accented if you are emotionally attached to the home. It is important to start viewing your home as just a house and picture yourself handing the keys over to the buyers. Go into each room and say your goodbyes and start looking to the future and all of the amazing things that you will be doing. Try not to dwell in the memories that you have made in the home. It will soon belong to someone else and you will be closing this chapter in your life and beginning a new one full of endless possibilities. Focus on this and call your agent. You are now ready to sell your home! Good luck and Congratulations on having the courage to take this step and move forward into the future!
If you are thinking about selling a home on the Russian River and have taken the steps in this blog to get your home ready to put on the market call David R. Millar at 707-217-1786. We will make sure your home is marketed with stunning fineness so that we can generate the most buyers and get you the best value for your home!