Monday, January 3, 2011

How January Is Good To Home Stagers

Are you ready for the adventures a new year brings?

This could be the start of the year you sell your house and make more money than you thought you could.

Because you staged it! Starting now.

Now, January, is the time of fresh starts. People are beginning new regimens, new habits, new plans to achieve new goals.

Many people have postponed plans to move until after the holidays. Now, the search begins in earnest.

Families want to settle in before school starts in the fall, and no one prefers moving in the heat of summer or in the fickle weather of winter, but that's not to say many people aren't shopping for a home.

Even now,  in mid-winter, the market is ready for your home!

Don't worry. You can still be ready for buyers when you have an organized plan.

Here are three steps that take advantage of new beginnings.

Do Your Homework

It's never too early to begin researching the market. While others might be still just considering a sale, and businesses are relaxing after the end of year bustle, you can be moving full steam ahead.

Research how houses similar to yours are priced. What do they look like? Decide what will be your least acceptable offer.

Some of these facts you can glean online yourself. Other data you can get from a Realtor. Now's a good time to research real estate agencies and choose your agent.

If you schedule a home inspector now, you'll have a better idea what needs to be done prior to listing. Next step is to draft a tentative budget for improvements, staging and moving.

Decide on a timeline and get recommendations for contractors if necessary. Depending on where you live, tradespeople might not be busy now and likely to give you full attention for quotes and suggestions. I find that the more tradespeople people I talk to, the more I learn about approaches to repairs and upgrades, so don't be shy about getting multiple quotes.

Plan Your Staging

Educate yourself about what styles will work for your home and what your typical buyer expects.

Investigate off-site storage facilities or other options for storing excess furniture and belongings.

Begin listing what furnishings you already own that make your home look valuable -- the furnishings you'll use to help to stage your property to maximize its potential. Think about how you will rearrange furniture to improve traffic flow and make your interior spaces appear larger.

Download my eBook, DIY Home Staging Tips to Sell Your Home Fast and for Top Dollar, to learn everything you need to know.

Look for Deals

Shop thrift stores and estate sales to find steals on accessories.

At the beginning of the year, many people go on organizing binges, discarding what doesn't work for them but might be perfect for staging your home.

At the same time, you can begin decluttering your own home of whatever doesn't do your home justice.

And don't forget to get some good photos of your home's exterior in the clear light of winter.

Use January to kick-start your campaign to get your home sold. You will be ready when homebuyers are ready, and before your competition is ready.


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