We all know on some level that presentation matters in sales, but it’s not always clear what that means when preparing a home for sale.
Your seller’s agent will likely be able to fill in several of these blanks for you, but beyond that there are a few steps you can take to improve how quickly and readily a potential buyer will take interest in your home.
Getting the home professionally cleaned prior to a showing.
Some degree of cleaning probably makes sense to everyone, but the extra care that goes into a professional deep clean can really make a difference.
For example, a quick wipe down of counters and floors definitely avoids obvious eyesores, but the amount of luster restored to light-colored trim, doorways, and even cupboards really makes the features pop. Some of that involves being on your hands and knees, and isn’t something a lot of homeowners want to get into with all the other moving parts of, well, moving at play.
Vacuuming and cleaning behind furniture, behind fixtures and even within lighting can also make things subtly more inviting. Behind the furniture matters because a formal showing sometimes involves staging the space, which we’ll get into more below.
Any time the home is staged for specific buyers, it may involve repositioning furniture and other items. That’s why you can’t count on a couch being where it is and no one seeing all the dust and gunk underneath it.
Plus, it makes things a lot smoother once you actually sell the home and have to move your things out to already have fully cleaned carpets.
The Advantages of Staging The Home For A Showing
It’s overly reductive to simply say that making the home look “lived in” makes it more inviting to prospective buyers.
A more useful explanation would be to say that keeping a certain style in mind for a particular personality can make a stronger impression during the showing.
In fact, several buyers agents surveyed said that keeping a particular buyer in mind and staging the home for their style positively affects their perception of the home’s value.
In other words, a home that seems suited to that buyer seems more valuable and more ideal, which makes them more likely to submit an offer and to offer higher.
Consensus there hovers between an increase of 1%-5% in perceived home value. That may not seem like a lot, but when you’re talking a $200,000 home, for instance, a 2% increase is $4000.
Other advantages of staging the home:
- The new layout is suggestive of the lifestyle one could lead while living in this home. If it’s not a setup the buyer has ever had before, seeing and walking through that layout is something of a commercial in itself. As anyone can study of the marketing industry, positioning a product for a particular buyer and allowing themselves to see themselves using it is powerful.
- The process of walking through the space can be tailored. Where you’ve had the sofa, for example, might have made the room feel cozy to you but may also require someone to walk several steps around it. Repositioning it and other seating can subtly make moving about the space feel more seamless, which factors into the impression.
- Staging allows your agent to tell more of a story with the home. Which rooms to visit first, the sense of continuity between them, and the ability to visually highlight each room’s best features makes for a more compelling walk-away feeling.
Cleaning helps make the preliminary inspection process simpler and more seamless.
Preliminary home inspections often occur during a showing, and allow a home inspector to make observations to a prospective buyer as they walk around. The cleaner, neater, and easier the space is to move about, the smoother that process can go.
Since a preliminary inspection can be make or break for a buyer’s interest in the property, it’s not something to take lightly.
A pre-inspection cleaning can stack the deck in your favor.
A professionally pre-cleaned space could mean the difference between a couple points of potential concern being mentioned or not, or even of a couple comments seeming less significant because of the overwhelmingly positive experience otherwise.
The same is true of the full home inspection, which comes later into the process and generally after a potential buyer has made their good faith payment.
Call us today to learn more about how we can help prepare your home for a sale!