February 16 2017
Over the years, we’ve proudly helped stage many homes. Some occupied, some vacant. Our goal always being to help the home sell quickly and for top dollar. Through our home staging journey, we’ve learned that selling your home is a lot like a math equation. Sorry to bring math into the mix, but hear us out… There are a few components that need to be included in order to make up the winning equation and provide the correct result. Skip out on one of those components in the equation, and you might not get the outcome you intended (part marks were just never good enough).
Luckily for you, we’ve landed on that perfect equation and we’re willing to share it with you. To make it even easier, we’ve also come up with an easy way to remember it – The 4 P’s for a Successful Home Sale.
For those marketers out there, the 4 P’s might ring a bell. We’ve borrowed the name but our model is a bit different. When it comes to selling your home, here are the four components you should focus your attention to that will significantly increase the chances of your home being sold and with the returns you are looking for:
Price + Preparation + Photography + Presentation = 4 P’s for a Successful Home Sale
You really can’t have one without the others. We’ve seen homeowners try and as suspected, the results almost always fall short. Let us elaborate on each component a bit more to show you why each is equally as important as the others.
#1: Price | Equation for a Successful Home Sale
Once you’ve decided to put your home up for sale, pricing it right for the community and neighborhood in which you live in, is just the first important step in the equation. Price it too low, and it may sell quickly but you might be disappointed with the return. Price it too high, and it may deter potential buyers from viewing the property altogether, even if the house is in a desirable location. Plus, buyers are quite savvy. They’ve likely done their homework (with or without a professional) and they know what other comparables are like around town.
Yourself, being just as savvy, should take the time to find out what your home is really worth. You can do this either on your own or with a knowledgeable appraiser or agent. The goal is to help you better understand the local market to figure out how your home lines up with other homes that are currently listed or recently sold in your neighborhood and city.
Gathering a list of 10 to 15 homes in your area is a good starting point if you are doing this on your own, or solicit the help of a real estate professional in your area to gain a deeper gage. Many realtors offer a free home evaluation or comparative market analysis upon request which will give you an understanding of the bigger picture so you can price your home strategically. Take advantage of the knowledge and tools available to you to ensure you don’t miss the mark on pricing your home accurately.
#2: Preparation | Equation for a Successful Home Sale
This next step is a big one as it involves many things to help get your home ready for the market. Preparation is often the most stressful step in the whole process for a family because it’s where a lot of the action happens. There’s cleaning, packing, home repairs and even upgrades that may have to be done in order to get the home ready for potential buyers to view.
This is where home staging comes to the rescue! Did you know that only 10% of buyers can see the potential in a home? That means 90% can’t overlook dirt, clutter and personal items. Home staging is much more than just placing pretty things to fill a space. It’s now seen as an essential investment to make that will work to highlight your homes strengths and enhance the space so that those coming through the door can easily imagine themselves living there. It’s goal is to unlock the full potential of your home to help your home appeal to the greatest pool of prospective buyers while helping it sell fast and for asking price or beyond. A professionally staged home will sell for up to 10% more than unstaged homes.
With our home staging services at Centre Staged Inc., we’re with you each step of the way to ensure less stress during the preparation process and assist with a smooth home sale. We provide you with an in depth Home Staging Consultation Report acting as your preparation checklist so no detail is left forgotten. We make recommendations on repairs or small improvements to be made if needed, can connect you to our preferred vendors and have access to our quality staging inventory to make suggestions on how to make your home shine it’s brightest.
#3: Photography| Equation for a Successful Home Sale
Photography is the step that often get’s overlooked or gets the cut due to budget restrictions. We’ve seen people try to DIY the photos themselves or pursue the help of a friend or family member who is “good with a camera”. Although we’re sure you’re friend’s sister’s boyfriend, Tom, has a good eye, there is a reason why the phrase “leave it to the professionals” was invented. Potential buyers flipping through listings will quickly say “pass” on homes with photos that are either too dark, too fuzzy, too small or just don’t highlight the homes best angles.
If you are not a real estate photographer, leave it to someone who is. Photography goes hand-in hand with home staging as it’s a crucial step and a golden opportunity for your home to make it’s first impression to the public. And first impressions are the ones that matter the most.
Which of the photos below do you find most appealing? They are actually the same space but one is photographed by a professional photographer and the other is not. Case in point.
In today’s competitive real estate market where everything is quickly accessible online, you can’t afford not to have high quality photos of your home. Professional photos of your home make the difference between someone deciding to view your home instead of someone else’s. They make their decision in a matter of seconds and based pictures alone, so those photos need to leave a strong impact.
#4: Presentation | Equation for a Successful Home Sale
You can’t have the other three steps without this last part of the equation. The presentation is what ties the whole package together. The best way to prepare your home for great presentation is to work with a real estate professional who will represent you in marketing your home.
The real estate process of selling your home is not always as easy as it has many layers involved. Having a professional by your side to help you navigate through the process and difficult situations that can arise can be well worth the realtor’s commission rates. Here are just a few of our reasons why it may be in your best interest to work with a realtor to present your home in the best light:
- They have the right knowledge, skills and education. They have access to a large network of other realtors, buyers and sellers and hold recent sales information about the neighborhood you live in that you just don’t have (even if you’ve lived in the neighborhood for a long time). They can also guide you on pricing strategies, which leads us all the way back to our first “P”.
- Realtors act as a buffer between you, the homeowner, and potential buyers and can largely help navigate difficult negotiations so no feathers go ruffled. They also take care of managing the contracts and paperwork so you don’t have to. And there does tend to be a lot of paperwork involved.
- It provides convenience for you and creates a wide reach for your listing as they often offer complete marketing packages which include photography, brochures, online listing links, open house representation, etc. As the busy homeowner you are, consider if you have time to take on all these efforts yourself.
Working with a realtor also means that your listing will be included in your region’s MLS (multiple listing service). The MLS is the largest database of homes for sale and the number one tool buyers and agents will use to search for a home. Having your home easily searchable on the MLS will increase the reach of both agents and buyers who can view your home listing.
We’re all looking for more time to add into our already busy lives, so leaving the logistics and marketing the presentation of your home sale in the hands of a realtor who has the career, knowledge and expertise to do the legwork will be in your favor.
The key, however, is to find the RIGHT agent to work with. Each realtor is different, but finding the right one who understands what you are looking for and that you work well with, will make the whole process a smooth and enjoyable one. To help you find your perfect realtor match, look to family and friends for recommendations based on proven success and service.
Ultimately, first impressions only happen once. Create your home’s best first impression possible by following our perfect equation to a successful home sale. The 4 P’s will be your best sidekick in helping the reduce the amount of stress you take on during the process, allowing you to spend your quality time where it counts the most – with your family.
To access more advice and information on preparing your home for a successful sale, download our Guide to Successful Home Staging here.