5 Issues Buyers Look For In A Home (That You Forgot)

By July 18, 2011 SELL
House in Meadowlark, Edmonton

 

The most unobservant person becomes an eagle-eyed sleuth when it comes to homebuying. You may have gotten used to your home’s quirks and inconveniences, but a potential buyer will not be as forgiving. Similarly, while unfinished projects around the house may not bother you, rest assured that those who tour your home will notice each and every one – and expect a price reduction for them if they do decide to buy. Fortunately, you can clean up the most obvious things that send buyers packing. Be sure to check out these specific areas when you’re looking to sell.

You may have gotten used to your home’s quirks and inconveniences, but a potential buyer will not be as forgiving

Cracks

If you look carefully enough, all homes have cracks. And although not all cracks in ceilings, walls or basements matter, a buyer may not be aware of that. After all, cracked concrete in driveways, on garage floors and in basements may have occurred 20 years ago, but to a buyer, those cracks could look like a money pit. If there is a way to fill cracks in and tidy them up, you probably should. Cracks in a home’s walls and ceilings are extremely common and don’t always indicate a problem. As long as there isn’t an issue that indicates a material defect, it’s fine to cover them up with some caulking and paint. Consider scheduling a professional home inspection before you sell and ask your inspector about any issues which you may have with cracks in your walls or floors. He or she will have an idea of which ones are of consequence and which are not. Any repairs that need to be done should be done before your home goes on the market, so whether your home has serious cracks or minor ones, leave plenty of time to get them fixed before you list your home.

Closet Space

It’s difficult to change the amount of closet space in your home without doing major renovations, so the key to making the most of what you have is decluttering and organizing. A buyer will have to imagine all their stuff fitting into your closets so you want to make them look as roomy as possible. If they’re full to the brim (with a bowling ball on top), you probably have some junk to get rid of. You might not even have small closets, but rather too much in them! Start by emptying those closets out, and then organize everything you have stored in an attractive way to ensure that you give buyers the impression of your home’s storage.

Take care to repair, clean or replace anything that really stands out

Floor Damage

Every house has damage to the floor to some degree or other. Homeowners notice the first scratch or stain on a new floor; after that, the damage is soon forgotten and subsequent damage becomes old news. But to a buyer, all these scratches, stains or runs are a first. After they have lived in a new home for a few months they will take ownership of that damage, but it will still put them off when they view a house for the first time. Take care to repair, clean or replace anything that really stands out when it comes to flooring damage. Try to look at your floor with fresh eyes before you sell, or ask a friend to come over and point out what they notice.

Fencing

When a buyer is paying a large amount of money for a plot of land, that buyer will want to know where the property begins and where it ends. Not all fences are made for the same purpose, and there’s no way to predict what a buyer will want in a fence, but there are a few things they will certainly not want. First, there should be a fence, but if the fence is in horrible shape, replace it or remove it. The only thing worse than no fence is a fence that needs to be taken down. If you just have a little straightening or painting to do, it shouldn’t be that much trouble, but don’t underestimate the value in replacing a fence to add to the attractiveness of your home. It makes a big difference, and if you can do some of the work yourself, it may be an affordable way to spruce up your lot.

When it comes to selling a home, the details really matter

Water Damage

Maybe you had a broken pipe at one point and it stained a ceiling tile. Now that the pipe is fixed, no problem, right? Wrong again. You need to get rid of the evidence of that water problem. Leaking pipes, old faucets, a dripping hot water tank – whatever it is, fix the leak and clean up any and all signs of water damage. Signs of water issues include peeling paint, mold, staining or even dust collecting in a certain pattern on a concrete floor. All of these problems can be fixed with a little work, and as long as you have taken care of the problem that caused the leak or damage, there is nothing wrong with tidying the area up to eliminate evidence of a past problem. You can’t hide an ongoing leak, but if you completely fix it, don’t forget to fix the cosmetic issues as well as the physical ones.

We’ve all heard the usual tips on selling a house, but I hope these commonly forgotten areas will provide a look at the bigger picture. When it comes to selling a home, the details really matter. If you are the kind of seller who has a tough time putting yourself in a buyer’s shoes, get some help from friends and family, but whatever you do, don’t just ignore the situation. Sometimes something simple will bring out the best in your home. Showcasing a spacious, well-maintained home is the key to maximizing your selling price and minimizing the time it takes to sell your house. If you put in your best effort to get your home in tip-top shape, you are more likely to get what you’re asking for.


 

by +Alan F Macdonald REALTOR® | Copyright © – gimme-shelter.com

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Alan F Macdonald

Author Alan F Macdonald

Alan F Macdonald is a real estate agent with Maxwell Challenge Realty in Edmonton, Alberta.

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