Okay, folks. I know it’s the middle of winter, and it’s been a mild one so far (fingers crossed!). But if you are buying or selling a Hoboken property, you really do need to start getting ready for spring. Use these next few weeks wisely, and you’ll save yourself headaches when the time comes to put your place on the market. This week we’ll concentrate on a few seller strategies for getting your condo ready. Next week we’ll talk to buyers.
Don’t wait till the last minute to de-clutter; do those little repairs and start the deep cleaning. You never know when people will start looking at properties! And if you read the Buyer section next week, you’ll understand.
First off, go out and rent a unit at the nearest self-storage facility, and start going through the house (and garage if you’re lucky enough to have one!) one room at a time. I promise you’ll be glad you did. You’re going to have to go through stuff before you move anyway, right? Why not start now when you can take your time about it. Buyers have a lot easier time imagining their stuff in the condo if they don’t have all your stuff to visualize through! Your rooms will look larger with less stuff in them anyway.
You know those bothersome little household repairs on your “Honey Do” list? Now is the time to get on them. You’re stuck inside for the next two months anyway. Put the time to good use. While those little imperfections irritate you, they’ll have buyers seeing potential repair dollar signs … and wondering what else needs to be taken care of that they aren’t seeing. Like the commercial says, “Just do it!” Remember, everything you can see and don’t repair is potentially a negotiating point for buyers looking to get you to lower your price.
Don’t forget the exterior! Start speaking with your condo association about any common area repairs or upgrades that may be needed as it could take a few months to get board approval and get the work completed. Remember the importance of those first impressions! Take a look at your buildings front façade and landscaping. Could it use new plantings, paint or brick re-pointing? Updates to these can add value to everyone’s homes and make it a more enjoyable place to live.
Take a look at your building's hallways, mailbox, laundry and storage areas. What can be done to give the best impression to potential buyers? Sometimes simply enforcing the current building rules and regulations, such as limiting items left in hallways, can help with how your building will show.
Now let’s talk about your roommates. Not the buddies from college but the furry ones we call pets. You may not smell them, but if you have carpets, upholstered furniture and even one little dog … or a litter box and one little kitten … newcomers to the house will smell them. And if the buyer has pet allergies, watch out! No amount of sprays or powders will cover the smell. If you are serious about selling, you need to have the carpets, drapes and upholstered furniture steam cleaned. Try to decide on an area (preferably uncarpeted) that the pets can be restricted to, and determine what to do with them when the house is going to be shown. Doggy day care? Pet carrier? Mom's house? If possible, have the pets removed from the condo during showings.
These are just a few suggestions to keep in mind and to get started on now so that you’ll be able to hit the ground running when your place goes onto the market!
Next week, buyer suggestions!
About Eddie: Eddie Perez is a resident of Hoboken and works as a New Jersey licensed Broker – REALTOR. His goal is to educate both buyers and sellers so that they can make the most of their bottom line while saving time and having fun during the process of buying or selling condominiums and brownstones in Hoboken and the surrounding metro communities including Jersey City and Weehawken, New Jersey. He has personally sold over 135 homes and is among the top producing agents in Hudson County. You can email questions to eddie@InvestHoboken.com. To schedule an appointment to meet with Eddie, call him direct at 201-344-2886.