If you're selling your home, you want to ensure that every aspect of the transaction goes smoothly in order to ensure a quick sale at a price point you're hoping to attain. The last thing you want to do is sabotage your efforts by turning buyers off and sending them running in the opposite direction.
Here are 5 things that turn buyers off that you need to avoid like the plague when selling your home.
1. Nasty Odours
Whether it's from last night's fish dinner, grandpa's cigarette smoking in the basement, or your furry friend's kitty litter, nothing turns off buyers more than a home that smells bad. You could have the most lovely decor, but gross odours will totally mask it.
The problem with many sellers is that they don't even realize that their homes smell bad. They're there all day, every day, so they become "odour blind." Trust your agent when they tell you that there are certain smells in the home that need to be dealt with, and do what's necessary to eliminate them.
Remove all remnants of your pet, and have them stay at a friend's or neighbour's while you're showing the home. Don't cook anything potent-smelling the night before a showing, and make sure no smoking takes place inside the house, especially while it's on the market.
2. Outdated Appliances and Fixtures
Buyers don't really want to see any green refrigerators and ovens that were all the rage back in 1976 (although depending on the home they may look really cool). They also don't want to have to look at old and outdated fixtures - such as light fixtures, door knobs, and cabinet handles.
You'd be well advised to swap these old components for newer ones. While it might cost you a little bit of money upfront, you can get that money back in spades by selling at a higher price. Making changes like these will make a massive difference to buyers, who will be more open to offering a higher price in exchange for modern appliances and fixtures.
It's not uncommon for homeowners to have clutter built up in their homes. Whether the kids leave their toys laying around, or you've got a stack of magazines piled up on the living room floor, or the laundry load is really starting to grow, clutter is a given when you own a home. But when your home is listed for sale, that clutter needs to go.
Buyers get immediately turned off if they have to tiptoe through clutter that should otherwise be tucked away out of sight. Even your closets should be organized because buyers will definitely open them up so see what type of storage your home offers. Do yourself a favour and start cleaning your house up right now before you even take photos of your home for your online listing.
4. Too Many Personal Items
Buying a house is kind of like buying a pair of shoes. Buyers are essentially "trying on" your home to see how it fits their lifestyle and their family. If you've got too many personal items out, this can distract the buyer, and a good fit is highly unlikely.
Anything that makes your home scream that another family is currently living there - despite the fact that buyers obviously knows this - is not what you want. Instead, what you want is for buyers to be able to easily visualize what it would be like to live in your home and call it their own.
Too many personal items will make it very difficult for them to do that. You want buyers to make an emotional connection with your home, so take down your family photos, religious artifacts, or political art, and replace them with more neutral pieces that don't make it seem like you live there at all.
5. Bad Curb Appeal
The front of your home is the first thing that buyers will see, so you want to be sure that it makes a good impression on buyers when they first pull up to your property. It's not uncommon for buyers to not even bother getting out of their car if they don't like what they see based on your home's curb appeal.
If your grass is overgrown, the weeds are invasive, the driveway is cracked and full of potholes, or the front door's paint is peeling, buyers will definitely be turned off. Take the time to spruce up your home's exterior, including updating your landscaping, front and garage doors, and even your mailbox or house numbers. Updating these components can go a long way in improving your home's curb appeal.
The Bottom Line
As a seller, your job is to do whatever you can to peak buyers interests and make them fall in love with your home - not the opposite. Don't kill the deal before it even starts by making the above mistakes. Take your real estate agent's advice about what needs to be done to your home to make it appeal to the masses of buyers looking in your neighbourhood right now.
If you would to scheduel an appointment I would be happy to do a walk through of your home to help you make it "show ready". Contact me anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org