By Kevin Oakley
For many new home buyers, a key step in building your dream home is selling your current home. As you consider the best time to sell your existing home, many real estate professionals will tell you that summer is one of the hottest seasons for home sales (pun intended).
You may also hear that spring is an even better time to list your home for sale. Across the nation, and especially in northern markets, buyers get more active each year as winter fades away.
Regardless of what part of the country you live in, most real estate professionals agree that summer is a better time to sell your home than fall or winter, when fewer people move. That’s especially true for family-friendly homes. Many parents of school age children don’t like to move in the middle of a school year.
While spring and summer are traditionally the best months to sell a home, one downside to selling in the summer is that you’ll have more competition. But fear not. We’re here to help you with five key tips on selling your home as quickly as possible (and perhaps even at a higher price) this summer.
1. Make sure your flora is flourishing.
In the summer, buyer’s eyes are naturally drawn to inviting, beautiful outdoor living spaces and landscaping. Your neighbors (and other homes for sale nearby) may have blooming flowers and charming shrubbery. Make sure the first impression of your home’s exterior is inviting — and better than other nearby homes for sale.
Tip: Invest in fresh, seasonal plants. Healthy plants exude a vibe of vitality; plants past their prime give your home a stale feel. Remember, curb appeal matters. Plants are a powerful and inexpensive edge for your home versus others on the market.
2. Make sure your grass is greener.
Your lawn’s appearance is especially important. Vibrant green grass in the peak of health creates an aura around your home. Getting great grass isn’t easy, so make sure you’re taking care of it now.
Tip: Lawn care experts advise you to water thoroughly no more than once or twice a week, which encourages deep and drought-resistant roots. Keep your mower’s blade sharp and set the blade height high to trim off less per mow. Green grass sells homes; an unkempt lawn is unappealing.
3. Be cool.
Be liberal with air conditioning. When potential buyers visit your home is not the time to try to save electricity; doing so can cost you. You want buyers (better thought of as guests) to be as comfortable as possible. In great part, their home buying decision will be based on how comfortable your home was during their visit.
Tip: Provide sufficient AC when buyers tour your home to make sure their comfort meters register high.
4. Let a little light shine in.
Let the natural light of summer accentuate your home. Open curtains and blinds to provide an inviting, radiant ambiance. However, don’t wait until just before shoppers arrive to shed light. Do so well in advance.
Tip: Check your home’s interior in full sunlight. Correct the inevitable and often minor issues and imperfections that you’ll find — and do so before buyers spot them. Check the view through your windows. Consider upgrading landscaping where needed. A fresh coat of stain on a fence or storing a grill will also improve the view.
5. Smells don’t sell.
Experts on staging your home for sale urge you to make sure your home is free of unappealing odors. That’s especially important in summer months, when odors can be more intense.
Tip: Have a friend or relative walk through your house with you, before potential buyers do so. Ask your designated “nose” to be candid. You may be surprised what your nose has grown accustomed to.
Selling your current home is not as exciting as selecting the floorplan, features and options for your brand-new dream home. However, the simple steps above will put your best foot forward compared to other homes potential buyers will see. Carefully staging your current home for sale can speed your journey to the new home you’re building — and it may even generate more money for you
from the sale of your current home .
Kevin Oakley is director of marketing at Heartland Homes, a leading custom home builder based in Pittsburgh, PA.