Here’s Why Some Homes Take So Long To Sell – And What To Do About It

Dear Friend,

Did you ever wonder why some homes sit on the market unsold for what seems like forever?  

The most important factors that determine whether a house will sell quickly happen in the time before the house ever goes on the market.

Did you know that homes that sell quickly almost always sell for more money than homes that sit on the market for several months?

Let's take a look at two factors that are in your control when getting ready to list.

 
Casting Out Clutter...
 
Love those toy trains from your childhood?  Totally attached to your collection of stuff animals?  Take a deep breath and a long gaze – then box ‘em up and ship them out to a storage facility or at least to a hidden spot under your bed. 
 
For no matter how much sentiment these personal items hold for you, these little treasures are nothing but CLUTTER to prospective buyers.
 
Clearing clutter from your home accomplishes two things; it makes areas of the house easier to clean and it neutralizes the space so prospective buyers can picture their own treasured items there.  So, if you begin cringing as you read the following suggestions, repeat this mantra after me: "Space sells."
 
Many folks find it easier to begin with clearing out the garage, an area where unwanted items often land.  Throw away worthless items you can do without and store important items in a warehouse or friend’s garage.  As you collect “disposable” items from your house decluttering, organize them neatly in your garage in preparation for a garage sale.
 
Many home sales experts recommend removing half your furniture from the house.  This is a good time to repeat, “Space sells.”
 
Accent tables, extra chairs, and cabinets that hold huge collections are good choices for removal.  For example, a dining room table with chairs should be kept in the room while a corner china cabinet or curio shelf would be removed.  Bedrooms should contain just one double or queen-size bed or two twin beds.  Extra beds should be stored.  Take an inventory of those items you can do without for awhile.  Make a note of where you plan to put each item when it’s removed.  Store it, sell it or give it away.
 
Depersonalize space.  Remove your teenage daughter’s poster of One-Direction from her bedroom, your husband’s stuffed deer head from the study, and any partisan items like bumper stickers, books or magazines from the family room.  All spaces should be neutral zones so potential buyers can picture their own belongings in each room.  Remind your family members that they can have these items back as soon as the house sells!
 
Just as it’s good to remember that space sells, it’s also important to remember The Rule of Three. 
 
Step one of the rule:  Take everything off the kitchen counter, bathroom vanity, table tops and mantles and wipe them clean.
 
Step two:  Return only THREE items to each space.  Yes, ONLY three.  As for the leftover items – store them, sell them or give them away.
 
Keep in mind that nothing is sacred when a house is on the market.  Anything that can be opened in any room – closets, drawers, cabinets, shower curtains, pantry doors – will be explored by potential buyers.  Clean out and organize closets, drawers and the pantry.  Keep the shower spotless and remove shampoo and conditioner bottles or any other personal care items.
 
In the bedroom, remove half the clothes from each closet, put shoes on a rack and hang purses and belts on pegs or organizers.  Don’t forget to recycle all those newspapers you have stashed in the hall closet.  Leave no cabinet door unopened or unclean.
 
Whew!  Now that you’ve decluttered your house, what do you do with the items that you no longer need but are still usable?  You have several options.  If you donate them to a charity, often these organizations will pick up donations so you can spend your time elsewhere.
 
You can always sell unwanted items through consignment shops, On-line classified ads, garage sales, social media buy and sells, you get the idea.  It might be nice to have a little extra cash to help pay moving expenses.  But if you can’t bear to part with these unnecessary treasures, self-storage may be the right answer for you.  Rented storage units are particularly convenient places to keep furniture, seasonal sports gear, holiday decorations, and patio furniture.
 
If clearing clutter seems like an overwhelming task, just remember two things.  First, reducing clutter makes each room easier to clean.  There are fewer objects to move when dusting and vacuuming. 
 
And don’t forget what’s down the road:  The move.  The more you clean out or box up, the easier it will be to prepare to move after your house sells.  Since you’ll have more important things to do at that time, doesn’t it make sense to get it done before your buyer looks at the house?
 
Pinpoint Pricing...
 
It’s true, probably the most important factor in selling quickly for top dollar is pricing your home at the optimal price.
 
One of the free services we offer is a “Pinpoint Price Analysis,” which gives you a precise range of pricing for your home – based on your home and its position in today’s market conditions.
 
Plus, we guarantee to sell your house at the Pinpoint Price in less than 30 days.
 
If you would like a Pinpoint Analysis for your home along with our "Getting Top Dollar" Show Room Shine Handbook just give us a call or email and we can arrange a convenient time to get together.
 
Courtesy of Century 21 Team Realty FREE to our Seller Clients.
Thanks for reading...
 
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Justin Lepore

Justin Lepore

Broker of Record
CENTURY 21 Team Realty Ltd., Brokerage*
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