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The Tao Of Home Selling: Part II - How To Make Buyers Feel Confident About Your Home

posted Jan 22, 2011, 11:39 PM by Kristen Wheatley   [ updated Feb 24, 2011, 8:00 AM ]
The Tao of Home Selling Series is not about mystic secrets to selling your home.  The word Tao literally means "way" or "path."  My experience has shown me that there is more emotion and psychology involved in the choices of home buyers than most people realize.  As a home seller, you can use this knowledge to help guide home buyers down the path to choosing your home.  You need to make potential home buyers feel WELCOMECONFIDENT, and COMFORTABLE.  Create an environment where these three conditions are met and you will be well on your way to a successful home sale.

Previously, I detailed the first condition:  Making Buyers Feel Welcome.  Now we will look at real actions you can take right now to help buyers feel confident about choosing your home and making a solid offer.

How To Make Buyers Feel Confident

In order to get top dollar for your home, buyers need to feel confident about the condition of your home's systems and structure.  If they have doubts about the heating system, roof, foundation, or other major systems, they will move on or start subtracting from their offer anticipating needed repairs.  Most buyers tend to subtract twice the amount of the actual cost of a repair.

Here is the interesting part.  Buyers will make assumptions (good and bad) about the condition of your home's major systems based on other things they see in the home.  If a home is clean and tidy, buyers will assume the major systems have been maintained properly whether they have or not.  On the flip side, you may have always maintained all of the major systems in your home, but if the basement is full of cobwebs, there are dirty light switch plates, missing outlet covers, or the foundation can not be seen due to piles of boxes, buyers will assume that you have not maintained your home.  Their offer, if they make one, will reflect their assumptions about your home's condition.

If you have actual known problems, be sure to disclose them upfront and provide professional estimates for needed repairs.  This will prevent the buyers from over estimating the cost and help them to feel confident that you are being honest with them about the condition of the home.

Confidence Builders

  • Clean or replace light switch and outlet covers.
  • Touch up chipped or flaking paint on trim and moldings.
  • Repair leaky faucets.
  • Replace any non working light bulbs.
  • Make sure all windows and doors are functional and make any needed repairs.
  • CLEAN.  Nothing says that your home has been well-maintained like a clean and tidy home.
  • Dust off your furnace and sweep out the basement.
  • Remove all cobwebs and debris inside and out.
  • Re-organize to eliminate the need for extension cords.
  • Attend to the "honey-do" list.  Don't leave any unfinished projects.
  • Label the circuits in your electrical box.  Buyers LOVE this!...and yes, they will look.
  • Clean out the cabinets under all of your sinks and wash the drain pipes if needed.
  • Consider replacing dated light fixtures.  *Enlist the help of a professional if needed.
  • A fresh coat of paint can make the oldest of homes feel new again.

Read on for part III:  How To Make Buyers Feel Comfortable.

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