"Buy My House, Please!"
FOR SALE ... STILL!
Steve and Deborah put their home on the market eight months ago. After several slow months, they lowered the selling price substantially, but that still failed to attract any offers. Deborah's frustration is mounting. "Why doesn't somebody want to buy this house?" she says. "Now we are getting anxious. We definitely have to start stepping it up to get it sold."
The couple wants to spruce up the inside of their home to make it more appealing to buyers, and there's no one better suited for the job then Rachael's DIY buddy, Kristan Cunningham! Before she gets to work on the couple's home, she tells Rachael the one thing homeowners should do once they put their house on the market.
• Depersonalize your home to entice buyers. "People can't detach from their homes," Kristan says. "They keep lots of personal items, lots of family photographs, art that's very specific. Those are all things that when a potential buyer comes in, they have a hard time envisioning their own stuff there. What you want people to do when they walk into your house when it's for sale is to say, 'I see my family living here. This feels like home.'"
Kristan says, "If you're trying to sell your house and it's been on the market more than six months, there's only one thing left to do: staging -- taking your house to its maximum potential to make it most appealing to buyers." She sets off to help Steve and Deborah do just that.
Kristan's staging tips:
• Focus on the two most important areas: the family room and the entry. "Most people don't have the time or money to take on the entire house and you're not going to remodel an entire house when you're trying to unload it. So focus on the areas that are going to be the most important to buyers: the family room, and the entry -- the first thing you see when you enter the house -- big impact!"
• Window treatments make the difference. "Window treatments can really drive home a high-dollar feel. You know what mascara does for your face? That's what good window treatments can do for a room."
• A little paint goes a long way. "Paint is a minimal investment. Takes a lot of work, but it's a $20 can of paint. There's nothing that, as a blanket statement, makes a bigger impact."
• Harmony is important. "Keeping furniture styles, paint colors all kind of the same general feel is huge. When there's a harmony about the house, people walk in and just feel good. So you have to really detatch. It has nothing to do with you and your taste. It has everything to do about the house and its potential for somebody else."
With Deborah and Steve's home all fixed up and ready to show to more potential buyers, Kristan has one final word of advice for other homeowners who are having difficulty selling their homes: "Don't start slashing prices before you try staging!"
Follow-up with Deborah and Steve
Deborah says that after Kristan and her team finished making over the entry and the family room, she and Steve refinished all the hardwood floors and went to work on the kitchen. Now that spring is here, their flowers are starting to bloom, the melting snow has given way to green grass, and they're about to open up the pool. They look forward to meeting more potential buyers -- perhaps even someone who saw their house on Rachael Ray!
If you'd interested in buying a home in Orange County, NY, that was made over by the Rachael Ray show, contact Deborah & Steve's realtor at Smitchger Realty.
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