When preparing to sell your home, there are several things you can do before and during the home sale process that will help you get maximum returns and reduce your time on the market. Often, some contractors like to push for a whole-house renovation but Teris Pantazes, co-founder of Baltimore and Washington D.C. Based Settle Rite Pre Sale Home Improvement has advice and warns against this.
For over 30 years, Mr. Pantazes has worked on hundreds of homes that were being sold or being prepared to be put on the market. His experience includes working with home sellers, banks, and even municipalities and developing a plan which would help a home move quickly.
“The key is knowing your market” Pantazes states. “Simply taking a shotgun approach and replacing everything in the home is not always the best option, in fact, it can reduce your return on investment and often money is wasted by a contractor who wants to install a high price home improvement product that buyers really don’t want and your realtor doesn’t need”. Pantazes is referring to items that often are high dollar but rarely fetch a return.
A recent study found that the average homebuyer spends between 15 and 25 minutes in a home prior to making a decision. If this is accurate, an item like focusing your funds or finances on a kitchen or bathroom remodel gives the highest return, because those are the items that buyers remember. However, there is a point of diminishing returns as home sellers decide to invest money in their homes and each circumstance is unique. A kitchen or bathroom investment might have a 60% return for some home sellers whereas sealing your driveway might provide none (imagine how many home buyers look at a driveway before making an offer compared to the new countertops you have installed).
Pantazes also highlights the amount of time it takes to renovate an entire home. “When selling a property, as any realtor would attest, time is of the essence and a home seller must hit at the right moment and be ready for negotiation. Realtors don’t want to engage on your property and then wait 2 months for a contractor to do a full renovation or rehab. This holds up the sale”. In fact, in the U.S., most homes are sold in the warmer spring and summer months and if a home seller were to start a renovation in mid-summer, chances are they would lose most of the potential buyers for that home sale season.
In summary, when preparing your home for the market, it is much more important to use a professional group that is focused on precision updates that have the highest return, not a shotgun approach of renovating everything. Each property is unique and you want to work with a company like Settle Rite to determine which updates and improvement will get you the most return on your investment and interest buyers to move quickly.