Selling your Atlanta home? Avoid these five common mistakes and get more buyers through your front door.
When your Atlanta home is on the market, first impressions are everything. Research tells us that a buyer decides if they like a home in the first 15 seconds…. yes 15 seconds! This starts with the curb appeal of your home. An unkept yard or peeling paint will scare some buyers away completely, while a neat, attractive exterior will bring in more potential buyers.
Before listing your home, make sure you avoid the following common mistakes that could sabotage your curb appeal:
Mistake #1 :: Don’t do anything
Many home sellers focus on the home’s interior and neglect to look at the outside of the house.
Walk to the front of your property and take a good look at your home (from the buyer’s perspective). Do you need to trim the hedges back? Is there peeling paint? Does the walkway need to be pressure washed? Also, walk around the entire home – there may be some issues on the side of the house and you just didn’t notice because it’s not a place you frequently visit — but a serious buyer will!
Mistake #2 :: Tired landscaping
Are things looking a little droopy or overgrown? Are there too many weeds in the lawn? You don’t need to go overboard and hire a professional landscaping service, but seeding the lawn, trimming the hedges and adding pops of color with some seasonal flowers and/or bright new outdoor pillows will go a long way. The pops of color also work wonders when your home is being photographed for the listing marketing.
Mistake #3 :: Too much clutter
When you are living in a home, clutter is often unavoidable, especially when you have children. But when it is on the market, it is so important to remove toys, excess lawn furniture, old planters and that collection of shoes by the front door. The ultimate goal is to leave the basics so that your home looks warm and inviting and the potential home buyers can visualize how they might use the space.
Mistake #4 :: Cracks, Stains and/or Peeling Paint
Even if a buyer is in love with your home, if they see cracks in the foundation, stains on the porch or deck area or peeling paint, they may quickly change their minds. Even though it may just be a hairline crack, nothing scares them away faster than perceived “structural issues.” Peeling or old, stained paint is also a big deterrent. If you have peeling paint, we would highly recommend that you have the home repainted. If it’s not peeling but is stained or dirty, pressure washing the house can make a world of difference (and is usually less than $300).
Also, if your home is a unique color that’s not in keeping with the rest of the homes in the community, a neutral paint color is recommended.
Mistake #5 :: It all starts (and possibly ends) at the front door
Even if your yard looks beautiful, Atlanta home buyers quickly lose their interest when they get to the front door. While their real estate agent is trying to open the lockbox and unlock the door, buyers have plenty of time to look at your front door. Does it need paint? Are the locks old and hard to open? (big turnoff!) Is the light above the door outdated? Do you have a dirty doormat? Are there cobwebs that you missed because you always enter the home from the garage? All of these are big buyer turn-offs, especially when they see that they might have to make repairs as soon as they move into the home.
When you are selling your Atlanta home — especially in the Intown market — a new Craftsman front door and lockset can often be purchased for less than $650 and can really freshen up the look of your home’s exterior and create a (very) good first impression. A new light fixture and welcome mat are also a plus!
All of the recommendations above shouldn’t be expensive (other than painting the full exterior of your home) but we promise that it will make a big difference when selling your home… both in the time it takes to get an offer and your profit margin.
If you have any questions about the home selling process and/or would like to get a professional opinion on the exterior staging, please don’t hesitate to call the Nest Atlanta team at 404-205-8800. We’re always here to help!