When it comes to selling your home, there is much to be done. It may seem like an overwhelming task, but if you space out your work to do one different task each day, in 12 days you can have your home completely ready to sell before the holidays! Here are the 12 steps to selling your home in the Columbia area before Christmas:
1. Find an Agent & See How They Can Sell Your Home
Make sure to look at the potential agent’s credentials, licensing, and ask for references. When you talk to your potential agent, find out their strategy on how they will sell your home. Do they plan on auctioning your house? Will they use the internet to help advertise?
2. See What Your Home is Worth
Look up other homes in the area that have recently sold and find out what they were sold for. Then, you can talk to your agent and use their comparative market analysis to figure out where along the line your house should be listed at. You can also use our free home valuation tool to see what your Columbia home is worth:
3. Decide on a Listing Price
You always want to set the listing price higher than you expect to get. Very often people who are interested in the house will give you a counter offer, so you want several thousand dollars of negotiating leeway. But you don’t want it too high, as an unaffordable price will keep folks from coming to see it. Your agent will also be a good guide to pricing your home in line with the current real estate market around Columbia, SC.
4. Make any Necessary Repairs
You need your home to be in good condition so that it still has an appeal and it doesn’t turn people off. So if you have broken flooring, a cracked window, or a hole in the wall, you’ll want to get that repaired to maintain the image of the house.
5. Clear the Clutter in Each Room
Cluttered homes mean one thing: Not enough space. To avoid sending that signal to home buyers, remove any clutter lying around the house. Pick up children’s toys scattered across the bedroom and organize the closets (yes, buyers will look in there). Remove any stacks of paper on your home office desk and minimize your kitchen appliances on countertops.
6. Arrange Furniture in a Way that Sells
Pick a few of your best-looking furniture pieces per room, and make sure there is no room that is empty or overstuffed. Give each room a clear purpose and use the furniture to create a focal point. Spread your items out in pairs or trios, making things look uniform and together, and make sure you can easily get through each room.
7. Stage the Bathroom
Remove all of your personal items from the bathroom. Then clean the room from top to bottom until it sparkles. If you plan to paint or add new colors, try to use neutrals, like tranquil blue for the walls, a white shower curtain, and dark brown cabinets. Hang some soft-colored art on the walls, and think “spa”.
8. Stage the Kitchen
De-clutter your counters, cabinets, and fridge and clean everything spotlessly. Then choose 1-2 items to keep on your counter, such as a toaster and coffee maker. Don’t keep more than 6 chairs at your table, and put a nice centerpiece in the middle. Let in some good light, make any necessary upgrades, and get rid of anything that’s broken.
9. Enhance the Curb Appeal
First impressions are very important, so you want your clients to be impressed with the outside as soon as they pull up to the house. Make sure you get your grass cut, pull up any weeds, rake up your leaves, and any other necessary cleaning.
10. Add Seasonal Touches
To welcome the holiday cheer, put a wreath on your door or on the mantel. You can light scented candles around the house, and hang lights over a few doorways and windows. Keep decorative bowls of Christmas flowers, ivy, and pine cones on the table. These seasonal touches will resonate with the home buyer’s mindset — showing them what the home would look like if they were living in it at this moment (during the holiday season).
11. Prepare & Host an Open House
Set an early date that won’t conflict with holiday schedules, and then pass out fliers, invitations, etc. Make sure you give clear directions to your home and specify the time. Remember that it’s casual and lots of walking around, so make the bathroom easily accessible, remove breakable items and provide easy finger foods with sugar free options for dieters. And always exude holiday cheer!
12. Review Feedback from the Open House
Once the open house is over, you and your agent will take all the reactions, positive and negative, and discuss any changes that are needed. If no one made an offer to you on the house, you may want to adjust the price. Settle on a final strategy, and then you’re ready to sell!
Selling Your Home in Columbia, SC
If you’d like more information about selling your home in Columbia, read our free home seller’s eBook: