Making Your Home Stand Out

    wp10I was recently reading an article on preparing homes to sell.  Go figure that one!!!

    Obviously, I like to keep up with the trends and what other real estate experts are saying in order to give my clients the best and most up-to-date information in the industry!  However, this article was more interesting than most because it listed a few things that most sellers don’t think about.

    Of course, some of the main ideas were to go ahead and start packing so the home isn’t too cluttered, get a home inspection so needed repairs are known and to stage the home for the best possible arrangements so buyers can see themselves living there.  These things are in many articles and are always noted.

    However, what I found interesting were the seven items that the article mentioned that buyers are looking for these days.

    1.       Nice size laundry room

    2.       Exterior lighting

    3.       Energy-efficient windows and appliances

    4.       Patio or deck

    5.       Hardwood flooring or tile

    6.       Storage space in the garage

    7.       Kitchens with eat-in areas

    Many of the above-mentioned items may not be cost effective to do before you put your home on the market, but you can play up some of these points by using what you do have!

    For example, the laundry room isn’t going to get bigger without a major renovation.  However, you can clear out the clutter and make it as useful as possible with the size you already have.

    Additionally, make sure all exterior lights have new and bright light bulbs in them.  If you don’t already have lights on the outside of your home, you can inexpensively put a few path lights or lights that focus on trees in the front or back yards.

    Obviously, energy-efficient windows and appliances are big ticket items.  So, if you know you will be moving in a few years, start replacing a few at time.  Also, make sure you do your research and figure out what items are tax deductible…this can be a huge savings.  Plus, with new windows you might be pleasantly surprised how much your energy bill will go down.

    Now, most homes have some sort of patio or deck…it might just be small.  If adding on to what you currently have isn’t doable, you can always dress up the space that you do have with flowers, furniture, outdoor carpets and lighting.  It’s amazing what a few flowers will do for a space!!

    Adding hardwood flooring or tile is another large ticket item, but is definitely necessary in most cases.  Make it a priority and start saving now so that you can at least add hardwood or tile to heavy trafficked areas and for all wet areas (baths, laundry, kitchen, etc.)  However, even if you need to sell your home tomorrow…updating the flooring is never a bad idea and something that you can potentially re-coop from the sale of your home.

    Storage space in the garage is not as hard as it seems. The first thing on the agenda should be to clear out all of the junk, garbage and clutter.  Putting in shelving units or hangers for lawn tools and toys not only tidies the space, but also gives an appearance of more room than you may have.

    On the other hand, kitchens with eat-in areas may not be feasible in your home, but that doesn’t mean you are without hope.  For one, you can add bar stools to kitchen bars that are already there or purchase an island to a kitchen that doesn’t have one (these can be found in almost any home goods store).  Another idea is to take whatever kind of kitchen you have and browse the internet for ideas that others have come up with and copy them in your own space.

    Buyers are looking for the perfect home for their family.  To ensure your home makes the cut, emulate the model home to the best of your ability.  Neutral colors, decluttering, good furniture placement and cleanliness go a long way towards getting that sale!!!

    If you or someone you know is interested in buying or selling real estate in the Austin area, please contact Kathleen Bucher at KathleenBucher@mac.com or 512.794.6644.  It would be an honor to earn your business!

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