Home Selling 101: Sell the House, Not the “Home”

Out of all the home selling secrets you’ll find here on this site, this one seems to bring all of it together in a nice packaged present with a bow, like it’s a Christmas! Only it’s not…. We’re not quite there yet to see Santa Claus come down our chimneys, but we can dream, can’t we? Still, when you get that buyer making the perfect offer, and you sign off on escrow to reap the financial benefits as you move out and find your zero-down home with H.O.P.E. to Own, we can all celebrate the holidays (even though we’re just on the cusp of Spring here). How? By “de-personalizing” your space. Completely.

Did I Just Throw You a Major Home Selling Curve Ball?home selling curio cabinet

No. Stay with me, folks. This home selling stuff will all make sense.

The thing is buyers don’t want to buy your house. They’re not buying your memories, they’re not buying your beds, your TV, your KitchenAid mixer, or even the cute knickknacks in your bathroom. As beautiful as your curio cabinet may be, they’re really not even basing their decision on that. They don’t even care about your innovative outdoor living features, such as your built-in deck or hot tub.

Rather, buyers are simply interested in your house itself. It’s not YOUR house anymore (at least in an interested buyer’s mind). And, yes, that’s true, or else you wouldn’t be knee-deep in trying to sell the darn thing. Sure, legally the house is still yours until the deed passes over and you’re in escrow, but at the heart of it all, this dwelling where your shoes still sit in the closet is no longer your place at all. You have to have that mindset — or else you won’t sell at all.

Come On — That Seems Far-Fetched

No, not at all. So let me get down to the real details of this post about home selling and say that you need a home stager. Or learn how to effectively home stage all on your own by taking all of the “personal” clutter out of your house, make your home into sort of a model spectacle for all to see. Do you see what I mean? When they see just the property itself, they don’t see you living in it.

They see the space. They see the benefits. They see the cleanliness. They see every detail, and trust me — they’re loving it.

Effective home selling through home staging includes removing all family photos, memorabilia collections, keepsakes, and other things that would keep the dwelling way too personal and distracting for home buyers. Get all of that stored away somewhere. Out of sight. Out of mind. Let the buyers imagine the house being their home.

Then You Can Ensure a Big Bidding War!

Like Jack Bauer, you mean business in this war. Only not with terrorists. Enjoy the bidding. Because when all the dust settles and you’re signing on the dotted line, you’ll be well on your way.

Outgrowing Your Home With No Chance for Renovation: What Can You Do?

For those families or individuals considering a move “up” in the real estate market, there’s the other option: renovation. It’s convenient, it’s creative, it offers options, and you develop a sense of accomplishment as you make a house into a home. Your home. However, sometimes situations can prevent you from ever doing anything even close to a lick of a paint can and roller on just one wall in your living room.

Why You Might Just Have to Consider a Move to a New Homerenovation real estate

Your rent-to-own home through the H.O.P.E. Program might have the option; make no mistake about that (because your landlord’s laid back, of course). Here’s the thing, though: perhaps your local ordinance won’t allow a renovation, adding new square footage. If that’s the case, what other option do you have?

Your other issue just might be all about the hassle. Think of the plastic wrap, dust, paint cans, ladders, and other non-specific “hazards” associated with a renovation, and if you’re the certain type of homeowner who doesn’t want to deal with all that — as well as shell out the costs from your valuable home equity loan — might want to consider a major move into a larger dwelling.

There’s the issue, too, of over-improving for your area. In the long run, if you’re maximizing sweat equity for your home, adding too much might be a disadvantage to you. Look at the comparables, for one thing — look around your neighborhood. You just might find that a renovation might put your home above the market, hence whenever the time’s right for you to sell and make some profit from all your investment, you could stand the chance of your home sitting there collecting dust while buyers pass you by. Might not be something you want to face!

A Renovation Might Not Be the Best Course of Action, But….

Every homeowner’s situation is different. You might be happy with your tiny Maine house. Who knows. That renovation might be the best idea, as long as your ordinance allows it. If not, though, pack up your stuff!

Yes, Your Landlord Is an Actual Human Being and Not the Terminator

It’s sad that everyone thinks of a landlord as that cybernetic killer, preying on the innocent and taking your money. Your landlord is not the Terminator, people. Arnold Schwarzenegger would retch at the thought. In truth, your landlord’s probably one of the most harmless mammals known to man, and if you really get to know your landlord well, that mammal might actually be adorable! (Not really)

The Unfortunate Stigma of Your Landlord

This does contribute to the negative connotation simply because we don’t like to address concerns with landlords. Your landlord just might evict you — shudder at the thought! Bear this in mind, please: if it real estate terminatorwasn’t for you, the tenant, your landlord wouldn’t have a shred of revenue come in! Your landlord needs you.

Additionally, by law, your landlord has a responsibility to you — to the well-being of the dwelling as far as maintenance and safety are concerned — which means his or her first priority is to ensure that all your needs are met. Rental tips for the up-and-coming home renter never saw this coming as positive as it is: you can talk to your landlord about your problems, and he or she will address them immediately.

Just be upfront and honest. If you’re having trouble paying this month’s rent, bring it up immediately. Don’t hide. Don’t give your landlord a reason to start banging on your door.

If you’re getting really sick of hearing that faucet drip, be honest: let your landlord know. It’s his/her job to get it fixed. By law, it’s a requirement.

Communication Is the Key to Success as a First-Time Renter

I’d venture to say that your landlord probably appreciates it. Honesty, openness, laid-back. The reverse is the same for landlords far and wide. They won’t normal tenants on their books, people. Not crazy people. So when they’re facing the decision of signing a rental agreement for a rent-to-own home with the H.O.P.E. Program and a particular tenant, it’s clear that the decision has to be a sound one.

You ensure your landlord’s confidence in the best way — by always being a tremendous communicator. Even during Judgment Day.