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We’ve all heard of the term “staging” when getting a property ready for the market. Staging involves making the home show at its best and may require fresh paint, new carpet or even new furniture. The final step to showing perfection is often overlooked. This is critical and should be used as a best practice when showing a home to potential buyers. Studies show that when a buyer spends more than 5 minutes in a property, they are more likely to make an offer on it.
- Be Cool: The weather will be heating up. It is only April and our outside temperatures are already in the 80’s! Turn your thermostat a few degrees lower than usual to cool down people who are coming in from the heat. When agents show a number of homes in one day, its seems that they never quite cooled down after stopping and starting the car so often. The coolness of your home will make them want to stay and look around.
- Hydrate: If your home is vacant, leave a note card on the fridge to let people know that you have chilled water bottles in the fridge. Think about it . . . many high end retail stores offer you water when you enter their doors. It is a complex emotional process but basically, when you get a bottle of water from a store clerk you just feel more obligated to stay in the store while you enjoy the water. So make sure the water is cold because a warm water bottle on the counter holds no appeal for a thirsty homebuyer. If you live in the home and know you have a showing coming up, you might buy a cute cooler to put on the counter. Fill it with ice and add small water bottles to share,
- Snacks: We have all seen the funny Snickers commercials where a normally sweet person turns into an angry ogre when they’re hungry, Afternoon blood sugar drops can be quickly cured with a small snack for a buyer. Some people will leave a bowl of chocolates on the counter. Another idea is to buy small packs of crackers or trail mix to leave in a bowl for hungry buyers to grab. Again, this will be an incentive for them to stay. Make sure you let them know to help themselves!
- Scent: Many sellers will light a scented candle or even multiple candles when getting ready for a showing. This isn’t the best idea any more because they pose a fire danger. Small children could bump a candle off a shelf and then you have a problem. The other issue is many people are sensitive to candle scents and smoke. For a different approach, try dabbing a few drops of essential oils on light bulbs of lamps, The lamp should be turned on anyway so the warmth of the light warms the oil creating a great smell. Try not to make any real odors from cooking, pets or cigarette smoke . . . you want it to be subtle.
- Information: Very few buyers will spend time perusing through your special binder on the counter that most title companies will provide. What they will do is pick up a nice color flyer showing the home inside and out. When buyers look at a number of homes in a day, it is easy to lose track of which home is which. A color flyer helps the buyer to remember where they were. It also might be nice to allow a space on the back of the flyer for “Notes” that the buyer can make about what they thought of the home.
These are just a few things you might do to make your home more inviting for buyers. The key is to get them in the door with correct pricing and good marketing with a top agent like one from The Fellwock Real Estate Group. Once a buyer is in the door, you need to make them want to stay and really feel what it would be like to make that house their home.
If you have been thinking about selling your home but wonder what it would be worth in today’s market, call our office at 281-353-8400 for a home valuation. From there we can discuss your situation and help you decide what is best.