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How To Showcase Your Property To Enchant Buyers

Updated on January 28, 2010

Many sellers do not realize that a relatively small investment in minor cosmetic enhancements can pay back dividends of many times the original expenditure. Especially in the current "buyer's market" economy, sellers should be meticulous about maintaining their properties in clean, attractive and well kept condition. The cost of painting exterior and interior walls, fixing broken eaves, fascia and downspouts, repairing ripped flooring, adjusting window treatments, and even staging a property with designer furniture and accessories is only a fraction of the additional value which the buyer will be happy to pay for a property that looks inviting and elegant.

Buyers are increasingly sophisticated and insightful, thus realize that cosmetic defects or shortcomings can indicate expensive hidden problems which even a home inspection may not uncover. The expected cost of repairs for the property skyrockets in the minds of buyers when they see chipped bathtubs, mouldy grout, warped doors, stained walls and all the other sure-fire tip-offs that the home has been neglected. That expectation of paying more after the purchase inevitably lowers the price the buyer is willing to offer as they are reserving a greater margin for repairs and maintenance. From improving the curb appeal, to making sure the kitchen and bathrooms are clean and tidy, all the way to baking a loaf of bread in the oven on open house day to fill the property with that magnificent aroma that speaks of home, a professional Realtor can guide the seller into taking the proper steps which can magnify the selling price of any property.

Over-improving a property can be as derogatory an activity as under-improving it. Buyers tend to get turned off by a level of "dolling up" which is outside the realm of the type of property and the price point. Many sellers tend to over-decorate their homes in their own personal styles, preferences and color palettes, without realizing that it can make the property look quirky and uninviting. A completely neutral color palette is always preferred to day-glo neon colors or funereal darks, and the furnishings and accessories should be tasteful, restrained, and quietly elegant. An experienced Realtor can advise the seller on areas such as bathrooms and kitchens where the property value can be increased several times the cost of the actual improvement, as long as it is done to a neutral style which will appeal to the greatest number of buyers. That is the primary reason why a seller should always consult with a professional Realtor before committing to a series of upgrades to the property.

Curb appeal is of primary importance thus your yard must be free from clutter, all walkway and driveway areas must be in good condition, and the lawn must be as close to golf course fairway quality as you can achieve. The windows and walls must be clean and any defects or damage painted over. The downspouts and eaves must also be cleaned and not overflowing with leaves and debris. If your roof leaks, pools water, has curled up shingles or sagging sections, those must be rectified before listing. Roof repairs can be extremely expensive and a buyer will reel away from a house that needs a new roof.

Continued In How To Showcase Your Property To Enchant Buyers, Part 2


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