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Selling Secrets

Hire the right team

The sale or purchase of real estate is the biggest investment most of us make in our lifetimes. Who better to help you navigate that transaction than the #1 Mercer Island Real Estate Team, that has over 60 years of combined experience and lives, loves and sells Mercer Island every single day.

The Lou and Lori Team are here to guide and support you with all of your real estate needs. With 3 generations of real estate knowledge and expertise, you will benefit from a one of a kind, concierge -inspired approach to buying or selling your home. The Lou and Lori Team are grounded in the ideals of knowledge, honesty and trust. These values have been leading the team since its inception in 1991. Consistently ranked amongst the best, the team was honored to have achieved the Chairman’s Circle top 1% award, in 2015 and again in 2016 Our family is excited to help your family with all of your real estate needs.

How to price your home right

Get a professional opinion:

The Lou and Lori Team can help determine a price for your home. We will provide you with a researched and professional competitive market analysis (CMA.) This is a complimentary report that we provide as a service to our clients. These reports will show, in detail, current market statistics, active and sold comparables, and include adjustments for unique items that your home may offer. On Mercer Island, there are no “apples to apples” comparisons so we take bits and pieces from several different properties to put together a whole.

Today’s buyer’s are highly educated to the market:

With technology today, everyone with a phone, i-pad or computer has access to immediate information. Buyer’s are also looking at what is currently on the market, pending and sold and comparing those homes to yours. Although, they may love your home, if the price isn’t right they are not going to make an offer on it. Buyer’s aren’t necessarily looking for a bargin but are seeking value.

What is trending in the market:

Where is the local market headed? Is it going up, down or sideways? By understanding the market’s trend line you can price your home ahead of the curve instead of chasing the market. In an increasing market, with a lack of inventory and more buyers than sellers, under-pricing a property is nearly impossible as competing buyers will push the price up and establish a new market value. In a decreasing market, a more aggressive pricing structure may initially seem as if you are selling your property too cheaply, but procuring a sale quickly in the end will prove to be a winning strategy.

Preparing your home for sale

The first impression is the only impression.

No matter how good the interior of your home looks, buyers have already judged your home before they walk through the door. It’s important to make people feel warm and welcome as they approach the house. Spruce up your home’s exterior with shrubs and brightly colored flowers. You can typically get a 100% return on the money you put into your home’s curb appeal. Entryways are also important. Your family may use it as a utility space for coats and keys, but while your home is on the market, make it a welcoming space with a small bench or table with a vase of fresh cut flowers.

Always be ready to show.

Your home needs to be “show ready” at all times. You never know when the buyer is going to walk through the door. Don’t leave the house with dishes in the sink, make sure bathrooms sparkling and bedrooms tidy with beds made. It’s a bit inconvenient, but it will help get your house sold more quickly.

The kitchen comes first.

You’re not actually selling your house, you’re selling your kitchen, that’s how important it is. The benefits of remodeling your kitchen are endless and the best part of it is that you’ll probably get 85% of your money back. The cost of replacing counter-tops, for example, may be a few thousand dollars. However, a buyer may knock $20,000 off the asking price if your kitchen looks dated. If painting, use a neutral color.

Take the home out of your house.

One of the most important things to do when selling your house is to depersonalize it. The more personal, the less a buyer can visualize themselves living there. Pack up family photos, memorabilia, collections and keepsakes. De-clutter.

Don’t over upgrade.

Quick fixes and freshening before selling always pay off. Mammoth makeovers, not so much. Paint and new carpet go a long way, as do updated lighting and hardware. Don’t invest in a major remodel just to sell your home.

Conceal the critters.

You might think your cuddly dog would warm the hearts of potential buyers, but not everyone is a dog or cat lover. Buyers don’t want to walk into your home and see a bowl full of dog food, smell the kitty litter box or have pet hair stuck to their clothes. Conceal the dog beds, pet toys and food dishes. Then be sure to take your animals with you before a showing or open house.

Light it up.

Maximize the light in your home. Take down the drapes, clean the windows, change the lampshades, increase the wattage in your bulbs, and cut the bushes outside your home to let the sunshine in. In the darker days around here, anything that allows more natural light inside your home is a plus.

Half-empty closets.

Storage is something every buyer is looking for and can never have enough of. Take half of your things out of your closets and cupboards, then neatly re-organize what’s left. Buyers will be sure to open these spaces and the perception of ample storage will go a long way.