By Patti Stern, PJ & Company Staging and Interior Decorating
Has your property been on the market for months with little buyer interest? With a competitive fall market ahead, it may help to reassess the condition of your home, make necessary updates, then re-list a new and improved staged property to generate new buzz and buyer interest. Here are some questions sellers should ask themselves to get their home on top of the list and ahead of the competition.
Does it Make the Best First Impression?
The key is to look at your home from the perspective of the buyer. With more than 97 percent of homes sold on the Internet, the first point of engagement for buyers today is the online listing. Therefore, it’s more important than ever to feature professional quality photos using the best lighting to encourage buyers to schedule a showing. Once they arrive, be sure that your curb appeal and front entry are well maintained, tidy, and welcoming by trimming bushes, cleaning walkways, making repairs, and adding seasonal touches to the front porch.
Does it Appeal to The Target Market?
According to a National Association of REALTORS(R) recent trends report, 66 percent of today’s first-time buyers are millennials, and they are looking for a home that is in move-in ready condition. These buyers will turn away instantly if the home is dated and gives the impression that it’s in need of renovation. They will, however, ultimately pay more for a home that looks fresh and inviting. Be sure that necessary repairs and cosmetic updates are made such as freshening up walls and cabinets with a coat of neutral paint, polishing hardwood floors, replacing lighting, hardware, appliances, etc.
Can Buyers Visualize Living in This Home?
Whether selling an occupied or vacant home, keep in mind that If buyers can’t emotionally connect, it won’t be memorable. Consider renting furniture for vacant properties to show buyers how they can use their own furnishings in the space. For occupied properties make sure there are no distractions such as personal items on walls, shelves and tables. Showcase every key room from the entry to the basement with a clean look and minimal accessories such as colorful pillows, wall art and simple vignettes.
Are Key Features Highlighted?
Be sure that your home’s best assets are not hidden. Is your stone fireplace covered with a cluttered mantle or distracting wall art? Are hardwood floors covered up with dated carpeting? Are floor to ceiling windows hidden behind heavy curtains? Are built-in shelves cluttered with old books and photos? If so, remove and simplify to show these features off, bring new life and increase perceived value to your home.
For more examples of interior decorating and home staging, visit www.pjstagingdecorating.com.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Patti Stern, principal, interior decorator and professional stager of PJ & Company Staging and Interior Decorating, has been decorating and staging homes since 2005. She and her team provide turnkey, full service home staging and interior decorating to clients across Connecticut, New York and Massachusetts. She also developed an award winning staging program for luxury homebuilder, Toll Brothers. Her company has received Houzz 2015 and 2016 Awards for Customer Service. Stern has been featured in Connecticut Magazine, the Hartford Courant, Danbury News-Times and on NBC Connecticut and FOX TV. She is a regular contributor to REALTOR® Magazine’s Styled, Staged and Sold. For more information, contact Patti Stern at 203-640-3762 or firstname.lastname@example.org