Hello, Homeowners in Houston!
5 Tips on How To Sell Your Houston Home at the Highest Price~ FAST!
Springtime is the best time of year to sell a home just about anywhere in the Nation, but I want to focus today on 5 helpful tips for selling a home at the highest price, as quickly as possible, especially in the Houston area, as this is where I’ve lived and been a Texas Real Estate Broker for almost 40 years~ so I know the City AND real estate pretty well, if I may say so myself! I specialize in the Houston Luxury Homes market, particularly in the Memorial, Zipcode 77024, & Spring Valley, Zipcode 77055, areas of Houston, but gladly travel all over Houston to help my Clients. If you haven’t taken a peek yet at my Houston Luxury Homes App, please take a moment to do so~ it has a 5-Star Google rating on Playstore, and is also available on iPhones~ it was the 1st-ever individual real estate app, and is tied into all the IDX Houston MLS Listings. You also might enjoy watching one of my YouTube videos about the Memorial area by clicking on: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Pafj6IFZ3c
This is truly a beautiful time in Houston, when the azaleas burst forth with a profusion of brilliant colors, from fuschia to baby pink to coral, with the much-loved Azalea Trail every year, sponsored by the River Oaks Garden Club, where the Public can journey along the streets, admiring all the gorgeous gardens and flowers in the area. Bayou Bend Historic Museum is also open to the public at this time of year, where you can go inside the restored Ima Hogg mansion, then stroll through its spacious horticultural wonderland near Buffalo Bayou.
But the main reason homeowners want to sell their homes in the Spring is that it’s at the end of the school year, when approaching summer vacations afford families enough time to move without disturbing their children’s studies and extra-curricular activities. So if you own a home in Houston, and you want to sell, here are my current 5 special tips to bear in mind, in order to secure a buyer quickly, and settle for the highest price:
- Repainting~ New Paint! Nothing spiffs up a home like new paint!~ Not only do colors come and go in vogue, the smell of new paint sends a psychological message to buyers that the home has been well-cared for and is “in style” with the use of fashionable hues. The most popular shades today seem to be off-whites and light-beiges, as well as the newer pale-greys. While the walls tend to be of a darker tone, the door frames, crown molding, and floor boards are painted a much lighter color. Likewise, the faucet colors seem to favor the lighter metals, like brushed-chrome or silver-gold, instead of the darker shades such as oil-rubbed bronze that came into popularity a couple of years ago~ which are still admired, but the trend has been toward the lighter tints in bathroom & kitchen sink fixtures, just as the walls. A word of caution: IF you have a room painted with your favorite color which happens to be a vibrant color, please replace it with a pale or neutral tone~ I’ve seen SO many homes that had these strikingly-wild colors like red or purple end up in Expired Listings! What a turn-off! Better to stay “neutral”! 2. Creating Open Space~ Whether you can knock out walls that divide & cut up room space, or not, depends upon your budget, of course, but it is well worth it if you can possibly scrimp & save or find a way to do it, as this type of Floor-Plan is the Number 1 thing that most buyers, by far, seem to CRAVE today! Even if you could hire a handyman to come in and remove a small half-ledge, like a dividing bar projecting into the middle of a room~ which doesn’t involve any major structural change~ to create an illusion of more “open space” in the area of the kitchen, dining room, or living room, that would be a great help. It seems that buyers today just want to gather together and communicate while they’re cooking or preparing meals, at the same time they’re either entertaining their guests or enjoying time with children and family members who are relaxing or watching TV in the family room, or doing their homework! It’s the “Open Concept” floor plan that people are seeking nowadays, so you might to try getting real creative & think of ways you can do this, on a limited budget or without spending too much money. 3. Upgrading Kitchens & Bathrooms~ More than in any other rooms in the house, buyers nowadays want upgrades in the kitchen & the bathroom, whether it’s installing new appliances (especially stainless steel), granite counters (hint: quartz seems to be overtaking granite in popularity more recently!), new sinks & faucets with lighter metals, such as brushed-nickel or silver with a touch of bronze, are being featured more nowadays than the previous darker tones or even gold fixtures), or luxurious jacuzzis and seamless showers~ ALL these are in vogue nowadays. Adding modernized lighting fixtures and elegant mirrors above the bathroom sinks lend a decorative touch. If you can’t afford installing new entire custom-made cabinets and cupboards, then certainly putting on new doors & hardware is a sure-fire catch for a buyer today! Everyone also loves good smells, so try being adventurous with this~ bake chocolate cookies just before a Showing, or splash the bathroom with your favorite fragrance. But “clean” sells better than ANY exotic perfume! When buyers come through, be sure to keep your counters free & clear of just about anything, and that includes used towels and toothbrushes & toothpaste tubes. An occasional flower bouquet or object d’art specially placed on a counter or two is fine. But seriously, stash away as much as you can~ hide counter-clutter behind cabinet doors, in the attic, or out in the garage~ just put all your “stuff” outa sight! Also, remove any stickers or photos from the Fridge!~ it makes for a cluttered look, & buyers prefer not to see family photos here~ they don’t want to see other people’s “personal” in the kitchen~ they want to envision themselves in the new surroundings! 4. “Light & Bright” with Lots of Windows~ Here again, your budget may limit your ability to create more window-space in your home or allow more natural light to enter the rooms. But this is one of the biggest draws to attract buyers, at least in Houston. People like the idea of a fluid indoor-outdoor lifestyle, with the illusion of almost living outside enjoying fresh air, even though they are inside the house. Open windows & doors lighten anyone’s heart, enjoying the art of al-fresco living! Whether you can knock out part of an exterior wall or somehow create an opening for a window is something you may seriously wish to consider, if your house has too many solid walls, making it appear more of a dungeon than a bright-airy place in which to live. Also consider putting in French doors to replace exterior doors, leading to the patio or sunroom, as well as interior doors, leading to the study or dining room. And by all means, if you have heavy curtains blocking a beautiful view, remove them and open up~ let the sun shine in! Also remember to wash all your windows, inside/out til they’re sparkle, so people can enjoy viewing the outside. 5. Wooden &/or Ceramic Tile Floors~ Carpet, at least in the living areas, has been on its way out, and is increasingly more so, as it’s disappearing in bedrooms too! One of the biggest reasons is because of its wear & tear~ needing to be replaced in a relatively short time, as compared to wooden or tile floors~ and carpet stains are often times hard to remove. Even cement-glazed floors of a semi-dark brown or tan color inlaid with slight designs seem to be increasingly popular, as they’re also easier to care for~ even more so than wood floors, which need to be polished occasionally, or can be easily scratched. And tile grouting between the squares of tile may darken over time with grime or chemicals used to clean them, necessitating re-grouting. Besides these factors, many people have allergies that are activated by microbacterial elements which burrow into carpet, especially if you have pets, and dander or cat hairs can get stuck in those fibers which might trigger an allergy-attack. Many people also simply like the clean, neat look of hardwood floors or tile that seem so much like wood you can hardly tell the difference!~ all of which come in many different shades and sizes, possibly highlighting the beauty of Oriental rugs, enhancing colors of wall paint, or contrasting decoratively with pieces of furniture in the room. Whether you use tile or wood to replace your carpet, they’re a winner, hands-down, when it comes to pleasing today’s buyers!
IF you need help selling your home in the Houston area, please don’t hesitate to give me a call~ I’d really love to meet you! And I offer a free CMA or Comparative Market Analysis on what your home is worth on today’s current market, plus could offer some custom “staging” tips for it!
Thanks for reading my blogpost, and hope to hear from you soon!
Lois D. Myers
Broker/Owner- Energy Capital Realty