While current events can seem a little unsettling, the residential real estate market is prospering. With interest rates at record lows and people who’ve been home a lot growing restless, there are a lot of eager buyers on the market. Available inventory remains low, so it’s a great time to sell a home.
Following the spring shut down when people spent a long time at home, many are reevaluating what features they want in their homes and what kind of neighborhoods they prefer. Working from home looks to become a regular perk for some workers who now can live in locations remote from the office. More family members being home due to school shutdowns or job shifts mean many families need more space, indoors and outside.
Strategies for Safely Selling your Home For Sale by Owner
The home selling process has always required the seller to make some changes, from repairs and improvements to cleaning and decorating to appeal to buyers. During coronavirus, there are a few new steps that will help sellers and buyers get through the process with confidence. Taking a few creative steps in your process will not only keep your and your buyers safer, but also may help you reach a larger audience and find more interested buyers. You can still show off your home to prospective buyers and also impress them that you’re taking proper precautions to make sure they stay safe. There are a variety of new and traditional tools at your disposal to get people excited enough to make an offer.
Try some of these strategies:
- Offer a virtual open house. So much of our lives are going virtual, why not home tours? People looking for a home might feel more comfortable with a video walk-through, either live or pre-recorded. Whether it’s you walking around with a camera or someone following along with one, you can highlight the special areas, like you would an in-person tour. This also has the added benefit that it could attract potential buyers from other regions, who may not have looked at what you had to offer pre-pandemic.
- Follow up by offering in-person visits. Some people may not be interested after a virtual tour, but others may want to see more. So rather than have to do a traditional open house, offer individual tours only to those who have expressed interest and could be possible buyers.
- Create boundaries. If your home is open for walk-in tours by appointment, consider making barriers for areas visitors shouldn’t access. This could be as simple as a ribbon designating something can be looked at but not necessarily entered. The restricted areas might be routine places where prospective buyers may not want to go anyway, such as a bathroom or small pantry. This lets them see but keeps them out of your personal areas.
- Offer protective items. As a courtesy, place a variety of personal protective items at the entrance of your home, such as disposable masks, wipes and hand sanitizer. People will appreciate your attention to protecting their health.
- Consider staging. Let a visual expert rearrange your home with a sale in mind – especially during these challenging times. Home stagers can put some of your personal items out of view, such as family photos or general clutter, and move other pieces around to be visually appealing. Home selling might be new to you, but people who stage homes are familiar with visual cues that can be pleasing, such as certain colors of towels.
- Deep clean the home while it is on the market, and share this info. If you create a sales sheet, include that you take safety and hygiene seriously. List what items are included in your deep cleaning and how often you perform this task. This also could tell prospective purchasers that you take these details seriously and they’ll be purchasing a home that has received regular full cleaning.
- Emphasize healthy ventilation or outdoor features. If it’s not too chilly, keep windows open – a nice breeze will freshen the home and give people a sense they are breathing healthy air. Update and furnish your patio if you have one. These days having an attractive outdoor space is extra-appealing to home-based workers and families.
We’re definitely in new territory with this pandemic, but some of the fundamentals of real estate still apply. Make sure your online listing shows the best features of your home in quality photos, and write an appealing but accurate description so you don’t miss out on buyers looking for any of the features you have, such as wood floors, bay windows and so on. Follow up promptly on any inquiries and be considerate in accommodating any pandemic concerns buyers may express. We are all learning to cope, but, with a few extra steps, there’s every reason to believe you’ll be able to reach your home selling goals.
GoToFSBO.com has been helping For Sale By Owner home sellers since 1994 in the Virginia-Maryland-DC area sell their property and save big on real estate commissions. Your listing agent, Debbie Kent is happy to offer assistance in selling your home. Call her at (540) 582-5777 for more information.