Repurposing your garage might seem like a good pandemic project, but if you’re considering selling, real estate agent Marnie Bennett says it’s not the best move.
“Turning a garage into a ‘man’s cave’, gym, home office or playroom is not a good idea. You have to show it like a real garage.
This is just one of what Bennett calls “home seller mistakes” that can affect the sale of your home and lower its value.
If you have a strong personality and it’s all over your home, it may need to be moderated to attract a buyer.
Bennett thinks of a client who loved Mardi Gras.
“They had their exterior painted purple and lavender green. wow! They agreed to repaint it neutral.
Sometimes color isn’t the only aspect that needs to be toned down a bit.
“We had a few owners with personal boudoir photos in their bedroom. It was very awkward with our agents and we had to gently say TMI or too much sharing,” says Bennett.
Even the family aspects of visiting a home sometimes need to be addressed.
“Don’t have too many family photos scattered around. People don’t want to feel like they’re invading (your space). You have to have the eyes of the buyers.
While you’re decluttering family heirlooms, Bennett suggests putting away personal collections as well.
“If you have a collection of perfume bottles, bobble heads, or sports memorabilia, you should probably put them away until your next move.”
Before calling the real estate agent or stager, you may also need to hire a few other talented people, perhaps a painter and a handyman.
Bennett says she once visited a house for sale and her foot walked through the door.
“A first impression is a lasting impression.”
Fix leaky faucets, tighten handrails or loose door handles, Bennett says. These things are simple to fix, but if they aren’t, it can decrease the value of your home.
Sometimes a first impression is not visual, but an affront to olfactory “perfume-abilities”.
“Cigarettes, BBQ smoke, pet smells, perfumes you plug in, strong food smells, a musty smell. These odors must be dealt with. People may be allergic or find the house dirty,” says Bennett.
Bennett says remedy the smell, especially that of cigarettes.
“Any smoke diminishes the value by 30%,” Bennett pointed out.
THE 7 MARNIE BENNETT HOME SELLER MISTAKES TO AVOID AND HOW TO FIX THEM!
#1. SMELLS THAT CAN KEEP BUYERS AWAY AND YOU LOSE A SALE:
- BBQ smoke
- Pet odors
- Musty smells
- Food odors
#2. DELAYED MAINTENANCE ISSUES
- Loose railings, steps or door handles
- Rusty mailboxes and numbers
- Dented garage doors, lights and brass door handles
#3. EXTERIOR PAINTING
- Offbeat colors – don’t be Rainbow Bright! Homebuyers prefer neutrals, gray, beige, cream, black, white
#4 TOO MUCH CUSTOMIZATION / TOO MUCH CLUTTER
- original wallpaper
- Strong wall colors
- Extreme wall art
- boudoir pictures
- Family pictures
- Personal collections
#5 GARAGE CONSTRUCTION
- Turning a garage into a “man’s cave”, gym, home office or playroom, you need to show it off as a real garage, a place to park your car. It adds value.
#6 NON-CALL EDGE/MESSY LOTS – 85 PERCENT OF BUYERS ARE TURNED DOWN BY UNKEEPED EXTERIORS
- Remove debris, toys, bicycles and sand
- Dress the entrance
#7 DIY WORK GONE WRONG
- Leaky faucets
- Torn carpets
- holes in the wall
- broken tiles
Hire a “handyman” to solve obvious problems.