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Selling a Home When It's Time to Go Back to School

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New England temperatures are cooling down and we switch from vacation mode, trips to the beach and care-free living to settling into our children's school schedules, new jobs or perhaps empty nest living.  Take this opportunity to assess your current housing situation and should your thoughts turn to selling your current home then now is best time to start planning rather than later. To determine the best time to put your home on the market you may wish to contact your local real estate agent. He or she will help you with strategies to get the highest and best sales price. And speaking of agents, it’s strongly suggested to interview a few Realtors, experience and personalities are important to determine who will be the most successful in coordinating your transaction. Click here for some questions to ask when choosing a Realtor to list your property with.

Before you begin interviewing Realtors, take time to assess both your current and future housing needs. For example, if you are single yet you plan to have a family in the near future, consider the distance to the local school and recreation programs.  Perhaps you have your last child attending college this year and will soon find you are an empty nester, this is a good time to take the opportunity to downsize to a home that's on one level and requires less maintenance or whatever fits your life style.  For more information on choosing the home that's right for you. 

When you decide to list your home, have found the agent you are comfortable with and know will do the best job for you, start packing!  That’s right, start packing up personal possessions now as a home that’s been depersonalized will be more attractive to a larger pool of buyers. Think of it this way, you want the new potential buyer to see their family photos on the wall not your grandma or favorite pet hanging on the wall. It’s important to create a blank slate anyone could visualize themselves living in. Pack and label items neatly in storage totes that can be stored in the basement, garage, shed or attic anywhere out of the way. If you have limited storage space, invest in a paid storage unit to keep things out of view of potential buyers.

Don’t get caught off guard when a potential buyer request short notice to view your home.  Here’s a great checklist to keep handy so you can make your home showcase ready within an hour or two,  And don’t forget about the home’s exterior, roll up garden houses, sweep walk-ways and keep your lawn freshly mowed. Remember first impressions are that, first impressions, it is rare to get a second chance when the first impression is negative.  

You’ll also need an “escape plan” so you, the kids and Scruffy have a place to go during showings. It’s extremely important for pets to be removed from the home; it can be an immediate turn-off to a non-dog-loving potential buyer. And be sure to have “supplies” in a to-go bag that’s packed and ready to go with everything you might need for yourself, the kids or pets at a moment’s notice.

Selling a home for some can be very stressful, no matter how smoothly you anticipate the process will be. You can make it easier on yourself by simply thinking ahead and being prepared.