Anyone who’s ever sold a home in Scottsdale will tell you it's stressful. Listings, lockboxes, agents, open houses--the list of things to keep track of goes on and on. Even though it's one of the top five hottest housing markets in the country, Phoenix homeowners can still expect some anxiety during the process. But, there are plenty of opportunities to make your home stand out. It's the details that make a difference when staging your home.
The old saying is true. You never get a second chance to make a first impression. Would-be buyers will form their opinion between their car and your front door. Focus on areas they'll notice first. You'll find plenty of visible items that are easy and inexpensive to upgrade or replace.
The path that brings visitors to your home should be a top priority when staging. It should be roomy enough to navigate without difficulty. It should be as clean, neat, and orderly as you can make it. There are a handful of places that really pack a punch for potential buyers. But compared to kitchens and bathrooms, walkways and entrances are very affordable to spruce up. Power-wash the walkway and front porch. Replace any loose pavers.
Make sure the lawn is thick, green and well-manicured. Before you begin showing, make sure to mow every week. And mow in a different direction each time to prevent the grass blades from leaning over to one side — the cut is more ragged when they’re allowed to do that. Edge every other week and pull all weeds.
Note: Potential buyers won’t intuitively know if you use a side door rather than the front door as the primary entrance. So, when you’re showing your house, make sure both entrances scream “Welcome to Your New Home”!
Another inexpensive way to make a great first impression is to revamp your landscaping. Accent with flowers and decorative plants to gets visitors thinking about the yard's potential. Consider choosing native plants for any new landscape additions. Native species look great and are much easier to maintain because they naturally thrive in the Phoenix climate. Few people want to invest in a home they'll have to work hard to maintain.
Clean and Declutter
You're competing with a lot of newly constructed homes on the market. Make sure yours is just as clean. The kitchen and bathroom should sparkle. That goes for all appliances and fixtures. While you're at it, make sure to lower the toilet seat!
Those vintage baseballs on the mantel or religious artifacts on the table may have special meaning to you, but they detract from the room. Box up personal items and store all the clutter. The next owners want to picture their things in the home.
Let the Sunshine In
Windows and window treatments are key elements. Make sure the glass is crystal clear; clean or replace aging curtains and blinds. Natural Light can do wonders for how a room looks and feels. You'll also want to turn on all indoor lights to make the rooms appear bigger. Sunlight is powerful and can sometimes highlight problem areas that light bulbs don’t.
Skip the Guesswork and Hire a Real Estate Agent
Getting a house ready for a huge market takes a lot of effort. Rely on your real estate agent to make the process a smooth one. Experienced sellers have a laundry list of prepping and staging tactics they’ll use to encourage buyers to make an offer.
Depend on a Friend
Take advantage of a useful tool: fresh eyes. People who live in a house are often blind to its flaws because they’ve gotten used to them. Before you invite potential buyers over, invite a friend who’s never been to your home to do a quick walk-through. Chances are, your friend can point out areas that could discourage a sale.