Spring home selling season is here, and
economists predict this will be a good year for sales as mortgage rates continue to hover at near-historic low rates.
Is it necessary to spend a lot of money in order to get a quick sale? No, says personal finance blogger Lars Peterson, who suggests five cheap and easy ways that may get you to a 'Sold' sign faster:
Clear the clutter – You love your stuff, but it may not be appealing to buyers. Pack away the knickknacks and most of the books and photos – even small pieces of furniture. A de-cluttered room looks larger and makes good features – like a chef's stove or fireplace – the focal point of the room.
Clean – Focus on rooms buyers inspect most carefully – kitchen and bathrooms, the living room and the master bedroom. Make every surface sparkle Get behind and under appliances.
In bathrooms, pay attention to mold and mildew.
Paint one room – If you can't afford the time or money to paint every room, paint one that gets a lot of attention – possibly the entryway or the kitchen. If the rooms seen first are freshly painted, it creates a good vibe for the rest of the house.
Plant colorful flowers – Since first impressions are so important, many real estate agents
advise sellers to spruce up the front of the home. Planting colorful flowers along the sidewalk or against the front of the house creates a welcoming image – or settle for a neat front lawn and a few pots of flowers on the porch.
Create a good vibe – Open windows to bring in fresh air. Open curtains and blinds to let in light. Install high wattage bulbs in your best fixtures, and turn on all the lights when showing your home. Avoid lingering cooking odors a day or two before an open house – and lightly citrus-scented candles can do a lot to make a home appealing. A recent Journal of Retailing study of retail shoppers found that simple aromas such as orange, lemon or pine boosted sales as much as 30 percent, while complex aromas – such as baking or potpourri odors – depressed sales a few percentage points.
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