Seller's Special: 7 Things that will turn off a potential buyer


Seller's Special:

The Top 7 things that will turn off any buyer looking at your home

1. Dirt & Odors

Hands down.  Nothing turns off a buyer quicker than a dirty house. It's the No. 1 biggest mistake- not getting the home in the best possible condition.

Buyers, buy with their noses. Make sure your home smells fresh and inviting. Odors are a deal breaker- especially kitchen odors.

Pets in the home? You have to deal with that. Like yesterday. If you're a dog person, you tend to think everyone else is a dog person. You're wrong- 50 percent of the population hates dogs and doesn't want to be near them.  Eliminate all traces of pets, and have a "pet plan" to make sure the animals are not around when the house is shown.

The same rules hold true for smokers: While your home is on the market, remove all smoker paraphernalia and SMOKE OUTSIDE! Smoking in the house is not an option. It's is the most offensive smell to family looking for a family home.

BONUS TIP:  Besides the stinky cooking odors that come from the kitchen, the smelliest room in the house is actually the living room. All that fabric absorbs odors quickly.

2. Old fixtures & Hardware

Want buyers to roll their eyes? Leave old fixtures on your doors and cabinets.

New cabinet hardware and doorknobs will probably cost all of $400 or $500, but it makes a huge difference. The same holds true for dated ceiling fans, light fixtures and kitchen appliances.

You might think the buyers can take care of personalizing that. Well, yes they can, but it will impede you from obtaining the highest possible price.


3. Dated Accents: Wallpaper & Popcorn Ceilings

Today's buyer wants no part of wallpaper.

Wallpaper is a pain to remove and simply adds another chore to a buyer's to-do list. It is a definite No-No.

Times change. The popcorn acoustic ceiling is a major, major turnoff to buyers these days


4. Too many personal items

When buyers tour a home, they're trying it on to see how it fits, just as they would a skirt or a pair of pants. If your house is cluttered with too many personal items, it's like the buyer is trying on those clothes with you still in them.

Sellers should try to eliminate personal items, including family photos, personal effects and even unique colors.

BONUS TIP: If you really want to hook a buyer? Place a mirror strategically so that people can actually see themselves in the home.

5. Snoopy sellers

Realtors and buyers alike cringe when they arrive for a showing and the Sellers are waiting at the front door.

Some sellers want to walk around with the potential buyer and put in their two cents' worth. It's not good.  Make a point to be away during showings. 


6. Poor curb appeal

Curb Appeal: Your home's handshake. It's the critical first impression that lasts with most buyers.

You have to trim and edge your yard to get it into the most immaculate condition you can.  Every little detail counts.


7. Clutter

Whether inside or out, less is more when it comes to clutter.

Your closets should be half-full with nothing on the floor. Why? Because most people looking for a house have outgrown their previous house. Showing them that you've still got room to grow gives them a reason to buy.

Kitchens and built-in bookshelves should showcase spaciousness by following the rule of three. For kitchens, there should be no more than three counter top appliances. Meanwhile, bookshelves should be divided into thirds: one-third books, one-third vases and pictures, and one-third empty.


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Rose Sicoli

Rose Sicoli

CENTURY 21 Professional Group Inc., Brokerage*
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