I saw this today on another website and felt it was too important not to share!
What Does Today's Home Buyer Want? The 5 S's to Selling Your Home
"I have a couple interested in looking at your house. When would be good for you?" Your heart pounds and you scrutinize your living room. With so many factors that can influence a buyer's decision, what can you do to make your house their dream home? Here are the top five areas that you can work on to maximize your home's appeal.
When you go car shopping, what is it that makes any car on the lot attractive? In most cases, it's that "new car feel" that makes it seem like THIS car could never get dirty, ever!
The same applies to house shopping. It's so much fun to walk into a sparkling clean home and think, "Yeah! I bet this place never gets dirty!" Anything that enhances a home's ability to stay neat is a huge plus. Features like convenient laundry rooms, mudrooms, linen closets, and garage storage spaces all make it easier for buyers to imagine themselves maintaining the home easily. This is especially important for couples moving out of cramped "starter homes" where they have had to make do. Ease of maintenance and the ability to keep things looking new is a top priority for many buyers.
While for younger families, buying a new home means increasing living space, not all families are interested in gargantuan square footage. The popularity of books like "The Not-So-Big House" and other minimalist approaches has resulted in people revisiting how to use their home design efficiently. Kitchens that are designed to attractively open into the living areas reduce floor space while still feeling roomy, which is great when entertaining.
Energy efficiency is also an important factor, and wise homebuyers are much more inclined to buy a home that is well-planned. Requiring less energy to keep the home snug in the winter and cool in the summer is a plus for any family, so fireplaces, gas logs, geothermal heat pumps, and solar panels can all make a home more desirable.
Your home is your castle...until you want to sell it. At that point, all the creativity and personality you have put into your home must be subdued, especially if your castle is very individualized. Ornate light fixtures, which to you are elegant or whimsical, may need to be packed up to install in your new home in favour of more neutral choices for potential buyers. If possible, paint your house or at least touch it up. Brilliant, shocking shades are not a great idea!
Another important area to "keep it simple" is with your flooring. Hardwoods and laminates contribute so much to a home's beauty and simplicity, while stepping barefoot onto a stranger's carpet can be unsettling to a lot of people.
Although it may seem contradictory to the concept of minimalism, buyers concerned with efficiency still appreciate an uncluttered, roomy feel, particularly regarding close space. For those expanding families itching to stretch their cramped legs from tiny starter homes, the idea of large, empty walk-in closets waiting to organize their stuff is a dream too tantalizing for words.
For sellers preparing to show their homes, it's important to capitalize on areas like closets. Make sure they are neat and nothing is piled on the floors. Buyers need to see spacious closets without having to imagine how empty it could be if your stuff wasn't packed into every space.
In today's techno-savvy world, buyers are looking for homes that offer automation systems, home offices, or media rooms capable of keeping homeowners connected. Touch screen thermostats, remote motion-sensing alarms that announce visitors in the driveway, and automated locks all make a good impression on buyers, as do well-planned outlets and Internet hookups conveniently located.
It takes wisdom to make your home attractive to buyers. By offering a sparkling, streamlined, spacious, simple, and smart home, you can trust that the people walking through it can envision that your home could be their castle.