Doorsteps blog posts

Blog entry by Doorsteps

Update Your Paint for a Faster Home Sale

Increasing interest for a faster home sale can be as simple as a fresh coat of paint. While the money spent on updating the exterior and interior paint colours of your home may seem like a waste when you are trying to sell, the extra money has proven to be well worth the investment. First impressions go further than just selling price and the neighbourhood. For many buyers, the aesthetics of a home are just as vital a selling point. At Doorsteps, we do everything we can to get your home sold and off the market, and we encourage you to make some small improvements such as updating the paint colours. Small changes likes paint can make or break a motivated sale. If a buyer is put off by your paint colours, they could move on to another home with more neutral shades. Follow some of these specific guidelines to catch the attention of those checking out your home.

  • Go Modern. Choose a colour scheme that it is up to date without being too trendy that it will go out of style soon. Classic tones with an updated shade are your best bet to showcase the exterior as well as the interior of your home.
  • Keep it Simple. Try to stick with one theme such as earth tones or shades of grey throughout the interior of the house. Too many colours, especially bright hues, can scare away buyers with the thought of having to redo each room with multiple layers of paint.
  • Stay away from funky techniques. Remember sponge painting? There are still multiple techniques for covering wall space that border on the arts and crafts time look. Paint the walls with regular roller/brush strokes with one colour.
  • Know your neighbourhood. Most of the time Doorsteps will recommend neutral tones for painting, but if your home is in a more artsy or flamboyant neighbourhood, it’s likely buyers are looking for something that stands out as opposed to a quiet more conservative suburb.
  • Pair it with your furnishings. The staging of your furniture and the type of decor and furnishings you own need to coordinate with your paint job. If you have a more minimalist home with modern furnishings, go with grey as opposed to warmer earth tones.

For more tips on fresh paint and other ways to make updates for a faster home sale, talk to the friendly and knowledgeable Doorsteps.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

Will Arranging My Furniture Sell My House Faster?

Have you ever perused the photos of homes for sale and been put off by empty rooms? Ever wondered how you could ever make that look like a home you could live in? Statistically, homes sell faster and for higher prices if the buyer has  visual of what the home will look like fully furnished. Many people ask us “How can I sell my house faster?” Creating that buyer-inspired visual is one great way to do just that. The concept is simple and is commonly known as staging.

The Research

A study that looked at 410 homes showed that staged homes sold on average in 42 days as opposed to non-staged homes that sold in 198 days. That’s far from the only convincing statistic in the world of home staging, though. Another study found that nearly one-third of buyers are willing to overlook flaws in the property if its well-staged.

To Get Started

If you think staging might be right for you, there are some important steps to follow when applying this technique to prepare your home correctly for a quick and successful sale. Utilise the skilled agents at Doorstep Agents to help stage your home for potential buyers at your next showing.

It’s not personal. For buyers to see the potential of your home as a home for themselves, it is necessary to remove any personal photos or memorabilia. Keeping your home looking more like a showroom can help buyers see what your home could look like if anyone owned it and not just your family.

Declutter your space. Eliminate furniture that is not necessary. For example in the living room, par down to one sofa and chair with matching end tables and one decorative floor item. Removing other furniture that takes ups space can also give the illusion of a bigger room.

Move to the middle. Arranging furniture away from the wall and more toward the centre of the room can also give the illusion of more floor space in any room. Take advantage of any place you can create the illusion of space. It will help sell your home.

Get rid of the throw space. We all tend to have an area in the home where everything gets thrown and tossed aside. Clean up this space and rearrange with a bed and dresser or desk and office area. Keep the furniture and arrangement minimalistic to give the appearance of a live-able, but chic space.

It’s all about function. Choose a function for each room and stick to that theme. If there is too much going on in one space, it may seem overwhelming and cluttered. If it is one large open room make a designated dining spacing and living space that are obviously separate from one another. In extra bedrooms, choose to make them either a bedroom, exercise room, or office but not all or two of those.

If you’re asking yourself, “How can I sell my house faster,” the quickest way is to contact us immediately. We’re here to help you at every level of selling your home. For more advice and tips on staging, contact Doorstep Agents today.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

How to Sell Your Home in the Summer

Summer is notoriously rough for the housing market, no matter where your home may be. The interest of potential home buyers has turned to planning holiday trips and relaxing, with a declined motivation to shop for houses. We know there are some things you can do to help increase the appeal and charm so you can sell your home even in the heat of the summer. To keep your motivation focused on the sale of your home, use this quick checklist of strategies to get your home off of the market.

Check your curb appeal. While the landscaping and exterior attractiveness of your home may not seem like a big deal, many potential buyers make their decision before even setting foot through the front door based on curbside appeal alone. Amp up your outer charm with some simple but pretty landscaping or a fresh coat of paint. You may even want to power wash siding if needed. The initial investment will be worth your sale in a stagnant market.

Spruce up the back garden. Clean up any dying or raggedy brush and flower beds. Set up the patio furniture and add little bright pops of colour with flower planters or furniture cushions. If a buyer can envision what a living space can look like with furniture and decor, they are more likely to make an offer.

Clean up your indoor living space. Making sure the inside of your home is viewer friendly at any given time allows us the freedom to show your home when a buyer is available. Keep clutter picked up, dust regularly, do laundry, and dishes anytime there is a need to ensure your home is ready for show all times of the day. Even keeping the windows and patio doors spotless is necessary for many buyers to consider a second look at your home.

Keep it cool. Summer temps can be blistering hot, and if your interior is not cool enough, your low quality air conditioning can be a deal breaker. Keep your air conditioning set to a cool and comfortable temp for potential buyers. If they fear a less than perfect working cooling system, you could lose a successful sale.

Other helpful tips to help sell your home include offering cool drinks to buyers and providing a list of activities or attractions in the neighbourhood that may entice an offer. Doorstep Agents is here to help with any questions or other helpful hints to move your home off the market.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

Three Things that Can Boost The Value of Your Home Immediately

Three Things that Can Boost The Value of Your Home Immediately

At Doorsteps, we’ve rarely seen a home seller who didn’t want to boost the property value as quickly as possible. As a seller, you want to get as much as you can for your home, particularly if you’ve put a lot of sweat equity and money into it over the years. If you’re still not quite hitting the valuation you want, these three steps may be able to create a big boost in your selling price.

Create More Living Space

Have unused space that just doesn’t seem helpful currently? Turning it into living space may be able to increase the price of your home. If a little work in the attic means a granny flat for the mother-in-law or a quick remodel may mean the ability to add a flex room like a playroom or a home office, you’re going to have an add-on the buyer will love. Before you embark on any big remodel projects, though, do some research to make sure you have a project where you’ll see a real return on your investment.

Lower Your Energy Costs

It seems virtually everyone is trying to be a bit greener these days, and lower energy costs can move your home from an energy hogging beast to an eco-friendly spot buyers will love. There are several ways to do this from replacing old windows with more energy-efficient versions to ensuring all of your appliances are rated well for energy consumption. Simple steps like adding rain barrels in the garden and LED bulbs throughout your home can help too.

Build Curb Appeal

Many buyers make their decision about your home before they ever even walk through that door. If you haven’t brushed up on your curb appeal, lately, there’s never a better time to do it like that before you sell your home. If there are things like fences that need to be mended or trimming to do, you should absolutely take care of it. If you can plant flowering annuals before you sell, that’s an attraction, too. Small landscaping projects can help as well. Simple steps like these could bump your selling price up as much as three to five percent in the long run.
If you’re ready for a much higher selling price, you’re ready to work with Doorsteps. Give us a call today to learn what we can do for your home.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

Is Spring Actually the Best Time to Sell a Home?

It’s long been said that real estate can be a fairly seasonal business, but for those looking to sell their homes, and idea like that one can be downright frightening. After all, what if you’re trying to sell your home in the winter or the middle of the summer holiday season. Do you still have a chance at actually getting your property off the market at a price that works for you?

Understanding the Seasons

There’s a reason they say spring is the best time to sell a home. Statistically speaking, it’s absolutely true. The shift toward spring tends to mark the busiest home buying season of the year. As the weather gets warmer and the days get longer, people begin looking for that perfect home. What’s more, though, is that some people tend to shop during the summer holidays so that if it becomes necessary for the children to switch schools, they can do so before the fall term begins once more.
Homes that sell during the spring and summer months tend to valuate better, and they tend to fetch a much higher sale price. The curb appeal of a home tends to increase during the warmer months, too, because your garden looks better in bloom and, in general, homes look far better during the warmer months.

Other Seasons

If you’re not selling your home during the warmest months of the year, though, don’t fret. Your home may still perform well during other seasons. Buyers tend to be pickier because there are so many homes for sale during those warmest months. If you’re selling during the “off-season,” you’re going to find more motivated buyers who are far more serious about purchasing your home quickly.
With Doorstep Agents on your side, any time is a great time to sell your home. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you fetch the price you want, no matter what the season may be.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

Should You Declutter Before You Sell

Should You Declutter Before You Sell?

One thing Doorsteps has often noticed is that almost every buyer wants the ability to picture themselves inside of a property. They want to be able to imagine their furniture, their wall art, and their belongings inside your space. The problem with that, though, is that if your stuff is all over the place, it’s really difficult to do just that. Even if your home is clean, it might still be filled with clutter that can be a huge turnoff to buyers. What’s more, though, is that if you declutter, your house might actually look bigger and appear to have more storage, which means potential buyers may think more of your space than they would with your stuff everywhere.

Where Am I Going to Put Everything?

Achieving the decluttered look can be tough. You basically have two choices – dumping your excess or storing it somewhere nearby. If you’re planning to dump your excess, you can think about whether you’d prefer to have a rummage sale or donate it to a charity shop. If you decide to store it, perhaps you can borrow a corner of your mum’s basement. You may also want to rent a storage unit somewhere nearby. Whatever you choose, you won’t want to store it anywhere on your property. Shoving it in the basement or a garage could be a potential turn-off for buyers. Before you decide to store your stuff, talk to us about the average timeframe for home sales in your area. This can shift, but whatever it is, you’ll want to double it as you plan where to put things.

Getting Started

Not sure what to remove? Begin by thinking personally. You’ll want to remove as many personal pictures and certificates as you can, because they might distract your buyer from the great features of the home.
Once you’ve done that, start thinking seasonally. You can pack almost anything that is currently out of season or is about to be. Seasonal clothes, bedding, and the like can all be removed while you’re trying to sell your home.
In the kitchen and bathroom, keep only what you need. You can pack quite a bit of the other stuff to move in to your new home once you’ve sold this one. People want to sell counter space and cabinet space in both places, so make certain it looks like there’s room to spare in these areas.
If you’re having trouble with the clutter, you may want to ask your agent to recommend a professional organizer to come in and help you get rid of some of the clutter until the home sells.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

Three Home Renovations That Really Pay Off When It’s Time to Sell

Making big changes to the inside of your home can mean it becomes your ideal space. Given that statistics indicate people change houses at least once a decade, though, it may not stay your ideal space for long. If you’ve made those big changes, then, are you simply out of luck when it comes to recouping your investment? Absolutely not. At Doorsteps, we’ve seen some renovations mean a serious increase in the selling price of a home. Wondering what pays off the most? Take a look at the top three.

  1. The Kitchen
  2. Believe it or not, the kitchen has become king in many spaces. Thanks to a growing foodie culture around the world, people want spacious, beautiful kitchens that can serve as much as a gathering space as they do a food prep space. If you have the money to spend, think stainless steel appliances, stone countertops, and wood flooring. Upgrades like these can mean up to a 50% return on your investment.

  3. A Conservatory
  4. You’ll have to give up a little garden space to add this to your home, but they typically come with a full return on the investment. Because a conservatory is typically small, you don’t even need planning permission to add one. You can also forget about the structure and fire safety regulations because so much of it will be glazed glass. What’s more is that it’s separated from your home with an external door, so that means an additional break on regulations. While you see low costs, buyers will see a room bathed in sunlight without having to deal with poor weather conditions.

  5. A Loft
  6. The Nationwide Building Society has found that lofts increase property values by up to 20%, making them an amazing investment. Adding a loft may mean extra bedroom space or even home office space that your current space sorely lacks. Potential buyers will find many imaginative uses for the loft you added, and that can only mean an increased base price.
    Make the most of your home now by choose renovations that will pay off when it is time to sell!

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

Should You Have an Open House?

There is some disagreement as to whether an open house will actually help to sell your home. Many agents will swear by them and make it a habit to host an open house for practically every home they have listed. Others claim they have sold no more homes by hosting open houses than by showing their listings based on interest and individual appointments. It may come down to your own personal preference as a homeowner getting ready to list your home for sale. Do you wish to have an open house. Discuss the pros and cons with Doorsteps to make your final decision.

Some of the Benefits

  • You may draw in a potential buyer who otherwise wouldn’t have called an agent to view your home. Driving by and seeing an open house sign or noticing an advertisement on social media could bring in more traffic to view your home and drive up interest.
  • These open houses may feel like less pressure to make a decision on whether to buy the house. If there are multiple people looking through the home then there will be less focus on just one buyer and what they like/don’t like about the home.
  • You have time to set the scene. In some cases, you may feel a bit rushed before a potential buyer views your home, but because you hold an open house on your own time, you have as much time as necessary to set the scene properly.

The Drawbacks

  • Open houses are not known to boost the sale of your home. In some areas, an open house will get a house sold about 2% of the time. Not great numbers when you are motivated to sell. Private showings where buyers can take their time and ask questions are usually more successful for selling a home.
  • Buyers who come to an open house have probably not gone through the pre-approval process for a home loan. They may be first time home buyers who are just looking to get started on their search. Without pre-approval the process for making an offer and getting financing could take more time delaying the sale date.
  • It’s not really buyers looking through your home. At lot of the traffic during your open house may just be curious passers-by or even neighbors. Having an open house makes it easy for anyone to walk through your home without having any serious interest to buy.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

Sell Your Home Fast in a Buyers’ Market

A buyers’ market is great when you are looking for a new home to purchase but can be disheartening when you are on the other end trying to sell your home. When the market becomes overrun with similar houses, buyers are in a position to offer low and get a great house far under list price. So how do you sell your home fast and for a good price when the market is tilted in favour of the buyer? There are some great tips for getting your home sold fast.

  1. Don’t overprice. Yes, we all want the top price for our homes but when the market is flooded with homes be realistic. Buyers tend to stay away from homes priced at the top of their value because they are worried the seller won’t be willing to negotiate. Find a price somewhere between your bottom price and the top value of your home. Some experts recommend coming in at least 20% lower than highest value for a quick sale.
  1. House selling 101. The same top tips are consistent no matter who you speak to. Update your paint, landscape and enhance the exterior or curb appeal of your place, and declutter your space. These basic tips give the appearance of a clean and open space giving you an edge over other home sellers.
  1. Show it off. Getting buyers to check out your house within the first 2 weeks of listing is vital to selling your home quickly. Advertise on social media and schedule an open house to increase the amount of traffic your home sees. Aggressively listing and showing your home are key to a quick sale. Be flexible and agree to showings anytime it is convenient for the potential buyers. Declining a showing because the house isn’t ready could lose you a buyer.
  1. Hire a photographer. The key to a great online listing is all in the photographs. Buyers get a feel for a home just by skimming through the photos you have taken. Hiring a photographer skilled in taking home photos will help capture the best images showcasing lighting and space sure to draw in buyers. Great photographs can help you get a fast sale.
  1. Don’t forget to talk up your location. Online advertising is great but be sure to include information about the area your house is located. Many buyers are looking for a specific vibe in the neighbourhood they will reside. Talk up your area and neighbours to enhance your property.

For information to help you sell in a buyers’ market, get in touch with Doorsteps today.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

Home Remodels that Increase the Value of Your Home

No one wants to put a lot of money and time into a house they are just going to list for sale. There are times, however, when spending a little money home remodels can actually pay back big time when it comes to listing your house for sale. Investing in rooms like the kitchen or bathrooms are some of the most expensive renovations but can pay off by adding value to your home increasing the sale price. The real updates that payoff and could prevent a sale if you don’t follow through with them are your roof, furnace/air, and siding. To decide which remodel you should make read on about each of these fixes that will boost the price of your home.

The Roof

There is no quicker way to end a potential sale than to learn that the roof is leaking or needs replaced. Repairing or replacing a roof is one of the most expensive home repairs in existence. Unless you are prepared to come down a great deal on your price get the roof fixed.

Heating and Cooling

Installing newer energy efficient central air con and heating can increase your home’s value as well as perk up the ears of buyers who learn the furnace and air are new. No one wants to purchase a home that will automatically need updates. Taking care of the hard stuff now before your sale will move your home for a fast sale.

New siding

Old wooden siding that is warped or damaged damages your curb appeal and keeps buyers from looking at your home. Investing in vinyl or metal side can increase your return profit over 90% of the time.

Bathroom and Kitchens

While updating the bathrooms and kitchens with granite countertops and new cabinets won’t necessarily help improve the price of your home, upgrading the showers and sink features can help with the value of your home. Installing dishwashers and showers where there were none will most definitely help to sell your home.

Putting off necessary repairs and updates will not only decrease the value of your home but could also end a sale once they potential buyers find out there are problems. Adding these home remodels and repairs will guarantee selling your home and for the top amount of money. For help with these repairs and advice on which updates and repairs to make, contact Doorsteps today.

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