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Selling your house is more than a mere transaction between two parties. It’s an event with long-term ramifications for everyone involved, and there’s a great deal at stake all around. The thing is, homes are not just functional spaces; they mean different things to people.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re just heading down the road, or even if you’re moving to another state, there will be a range of things you’re looking for in your new home. The very same is true for the buyers of your current home.
There are some basic things, like removing junk from your home before selling, but there are other things that folks sometimes overlook. Let’s consider a few of these.
Some buyers might hope to start a family, while others will have home businesses. Certain buyers need lots of storage space, whereas some can afford to be more minimalist about things. When you’re selling your home, it pays to cover as many of these bases as you can.
Very often, the things that stand out to prospective homeowners can be completely invisible to those who have lived in a house for years. Over time, these things just become a part of our experience of a certain space and vanish from our attention.
It can be very useful to have a fresh set of eyes at times like this. It also helps to put sentimental thoughts aside and be objective about what must be done. You might think fondly of that brightly colored mural in the back room, but others won’t.
A fresh coat of neutral colors throughout the house has more effect than you’d think, especially in the lighter tones that broaden spaces. You want the home to appeal to as many dreams as possible, so keep things broad where you can.
If you’re the sort of person who can DIY with one hand tied behind your back, then you have a real advantage when it comes to freshening up the place. If you aren’t that person, it still tends to make sense to pay someone to do it for you or read up on how to do it.
Those timber railings may look fine to you, but they’ll stand out like a beacon to someone else. If in doubt, rip it out! Bring in some fresh timber and a big pot of varnish because a little financial layout today could mean the difference tomorrow.
If there’s brickwork with crumbling mortar, have it ground out and repointed, whether it’s at eye level or on the chimney. It all counts, and buyers see everything in microscopic detail. Anything that disturbs the dream even a little can destroy the sale.
You aren’t selling a specific idea when you sell a house; you’re selling the potential for the fulfillment of multiple ideas. It’s not your portrait, but a plausible canvas for someone else’s portrait instead. They must be able to see themselves looking back from the easel.
City folks will usually not have much in the way of open space around their dwellings, but for those in the suburbs or rural locations, the garden is a standard feature. You might not care very much about gardening, and the buyer may not either, but it must be tidy.
Ensure that lawns are trim and neat, flower beds are minimal and kempt, and no heaps of anything can be seen from any vantage. There will always be that walk-around moment, once you’ve toured the interior, in which the buyers wander the outside areas.
A pile of composting leaves may very well be charming and rustic to certain people, but you just don’t want to take that sort of risk. The same applies to the exterior as to the interior here; keep open as many interpretations as you’re able.
If the garden is too wild and hectic, then get stuck in and rein it in a bit. If things seem a little bare, then bring in a couple of features to adequately fill the space. Again, don’t be specific about your choices. Stick to broad appeal every time.
Ultimately, you’re not going to be helping your goal by appealing to only yourself. In order to help yourself in the sale of your home, you must make it appeal to someone else. In fact, it must appeal to as many “someone else’s” as humanly possible.
That’s the trick. Objectivity and the search for that blank slate effect that allows strangers to see the fruition of their own desires in the space you’re providing. As sad as it can often be to think about, your time with the home is at an end right when it begins for others.