Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Tips on selling a house in this market?!

So, we have to sell our house. Which house, you say? Ah yes, we do own TWO homes...sort of. Well, the second one is not quite here yet - it's in pieces in a box trailer in Connecticut - but we OWN it! Anyway, the Spring real estate market "opens" in February (kind of sounds like the hunting season opening...and I kind of feel like I'm the one in the cross-hairs at this time!) Everyone's heard the stories about the real estate market - pretty bleak for sellers like us - but we really don't have any choice. We have to sell this house. So, I wanted to toss the question out there to you all:

Any tips on how to sell a house in this market?

I am hoping the collective wisdom of our friends and family (and anyone else out there in the blogosphere who happens to be reading this!) will produce some nuggets of advice that will help us to move this house for the right price. Post a comment or send me an email if you have any thoughts. Thanks!


david ronka said...

Ben - We had great luck selling it ourselves. Start with a low price so you can generate interest when the property is new on the market. Much of our competition started too high (figuring they could come down later), but then ended up sitting on the market forever. Those are my quick thoughts.


virginia a jacobsen said...

Hi Ben and Susi;

As I have told you many times, and will probably never get tired of telling you, I LOVE your barn project!

We'll talk more about that later but for now lets focus on selling your house. In a relatively small house like yours, the first thing I would do is declutter. By that I mean make it look like you don't live there and that you certainly don't have too many kids. Rent a stoage bin (away from the house) and empty out all your closets, drawers, bookshelves, kitchen cabinets, and yes, even your refrigerator. Store all your Summer clothing and stuff your family doesn't need right now. Even if your books fit perfectly on the skhelves, make it look like there is room for more. You have to let the prospective buyers imagine their own stuff there and for that you have to give them some empty space. During the time that you have your house on the market, make sure most of the toys are in storage. Nobody wants to visit someone else's toy store. Set aside just a small bookshelf for their toys. Return your living room to the layout you had when there were only two kids. The couple who will buy your house probably doesn't have kids or might have one or two. You want to make it look like there is plenty of space for them to grow into the house.

I found having our home on the market to be the most stessful part of the moving process. We had to have the apartment always clean and clutter-free, and yes, we had to have all the beds made, and pretned no one lived there. Make sure that there are no funny smells. Clean the windows.

If you want onsite advise, let me know and I can visit. I am a closet real estate agent...

If you need my two-cents on IKEA purchases, let me know. I am an expert IKEA shopper. BTW, loved your chair info. If you are looking for modern, informal, tough kitchen/dining room chairs, look into Kartell's Maui chair. We have them in Gloucester in our dining room and love them.

Congratulations on a very exciting project and lots of good luck!