The National Association of Realtors (NAR) Sellers Survey for 2008 showed that:
• Buyers used a variety of resources in searching for a home: 87 percent used the Internet.
• Fewer buyers rely on a home book or magazine, home builders, television, billboards and relocation companies. Buyers most commonly start their search process online.
• When asked where they first learned about the home they purchased 32 percent said the Internet; 15 percent from yard signs; 7 percent from a friend, neighbor or relative; 7 percent home builders; 3 percent a print or newspaper ad; 2 percent directly from the seller; and 1 percent a home book or magazine.
• Local metropolitan multiple listing service Web sites were the most popular Internet resource, used by 60 percent of buyers.
• Buyers searched a median of 10 weeks and viewed 10 homes.
What do these statistics say? They say that the majority of home buyers, (87%) are starting their search on the internet, as their main source for buying a home. A picture is worth a thousand words, and if your photo's don't reflect a warm and inviting, picture perfect home on the internet, buyers won't even make it to your front door.
It also means there is a short timeframe they are looking and a small amount of homes that they are viewing. Why? Because they have already looked on the internet and ruled out the homes they weren't interested in. This means you have to be the most competitive and aggressive with how your home looks. If home buyers are only looking at a total of 10, odds are if your house is not picture perfect, it won't even get the chance of a walk-through from a buyer.
Home sellers can't afford not to be ready for the selling season; you have to be show ready when buyers are out looking. When you miss that short period of time, your house becomes a stale listing, and real estate agents don't show it as much, because it has lost its appeal, they will show the newer fresher listings. It also shouldn't stay on the market a long period of time, this tells the buyer, that a price-reduction is probably imminent.
Don't think that de-cluttering, cleaning, picking up all of the toys, and straightening up will do the trick either. That is not home staging, and don't be mislead that it is. That is getting your house clean, and ready to be staged. Home Buyers are looking for their perfect dream home, they want to imagine what it would be like to live there.
If it's vacant, your chances are even worse, buyers want to see a homey place; they want to see livability, functionality, and use of space. Not poorly rearranged mis-matched furniture, that is outdated and thread bear.
This is probably your biggest investment; spend a few hundred to a few thousand dollars to not only get your home sold, but to get it sold fast. Make your home the stellar stand-out in the area that outshines all of the others you are competing with.
We highly recommend a home staging consultation for any home, no matter of age, size or condition. It will be the least amount of money for your biggest investment to merchandise your property, which is unfortunately mandatory in this economy being a buyer's market. Home buyers have a mass amount of homes to choose from.
Make yours stand out!
Cindy Bryant - Owner of Redesign Etc. a Home Staging & Interior Redesign Service.Serving Houston's Bay & Gulf Coast.Featured on ABC Channel KTRK Channel 13 Houston in two segments called "Strech Your Dollar". Segment one on Redesigning A Home. Segment two on Tips for Redesigning Your Own Home.Cindy has also been featured in the Houston Chronicle, and Chron.com in "Money Matters". Appearances on Am Talk Radio "Keeping You In The Loop".Cindy is the Regional Vice President for RESA (Real Estate Staging Association) for TX, NM, AK, OK, LA.Member of ASHSR (American Society of Home Stagers & Redesigners).Cindy is Houston's "Ask the Expert" for StagersList.com.
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