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For the last couple of decades, open floor plans with combined kitchens and family rooms were a staple in new homes. But that trend is changing, and real estate agents need to be aware of the latest trend in new home design which is closed kitchens. Now selling older homes that don’t have open floor plans is going to get a lot easier as people realize the benefits of having a closed kitchen. If you have listings for homes that don’t have a combined kitchen and family room some of the benefits of a closed kitchen that you can highlight to prospective buyers include:

No Visible Mess

kitchen Designs EdmontonOne of the biggest reasons why people are returning to a closed kitchen is that there is no visible mess. Home cooks over the last ten years or so have realized that they don’t actually want their guests to see piles of dirty pots and pans and they don’t want to feel pressure to keep the kitchen spotless as they are trying to cook. Some homemakers also don’t want to see the inevitable chaos in the family room all the time either. Piles of books and papers, bookbags and other clutter can easily fill up the family room when everyone is hanging out there. Kitchens are returning to being a place to craft food and not put on a cooking show.

More Entertaining

As people begin to embrace the idea of their home as a sanctuary from the outside world again people want to do more entertaining and less visible cooking. Fancy place settings, good dishes, and meals centered on the conversation in a dining room rather than snacks eaten around the kitchen island are becoming the focus of entertaining.

 

Read MoreOutdated Home Design Trends That Buyers Don’t Want 

Less Pressure

Some people are finding that an open kitchen and family room area makes them feel pressured while they are cooking. In order to not give away family recipes, they’d like some privacy while cooking. And other people would like to be able to leave the kitchen mess and sit down with their families to eat rather than feeling like the mess of cooking needs to be cleaned up before they can enjoy the meal that they just cooked.

Closed kitchens offer home cooks the chance to cook without feeling like they have to perform at the same time. And the mess can be quietly hidden away to be cleaned up after the meal is over. So when you’re selling older homes or new homes that don’t have an open kitchen stress the benefits that come with a closed kitchen in order to show buyers that a closed kitchen really can work better than an open kitchen.

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With all the demands on your time, you might be tempted to let those past relationships slip through the cracks. But your relationship with a buyer or seller shouldn’t end once the house has been bought or sold. You put a lot of work into building that relationship and it still could benefit you. That’s because word of mouth referrals are still the number one way that an agent gets clients who are interested in buying or selling their home. There is absolutely no substitute for having a good relationship with a happy past client.

 

When your old clients are happy with their purchase or sale and you continue to follow up with them, comment on their social media, or take other steps to keep the relationship strong you will be the one that they tell friends and family about when their family and friends want to buy or sell a home. And getting a referral like that is what will keep you successful.

 

So after the sale closes don’t write off those buyers and sellers. Keep actively trying to build relationships with them so that you can count on them for referrals and references. Here are a few easy ways to keep those relationships strong:

Ask Them How They’re Doing

A simple way to keep those past clients engaged is just to periodically ask how they’re doing. Ask if they like the house, or if they’ve done any renovations. Ask them if they’re happy with the neighborhood or how their kids are doing in the new school. Reaching out lets them know that you’re still interested in making sure that they’re happy with their home.

Like Their Posts

Keep their posts in your social media newsfeed and when they post a photo of the house, a picture of some renovations they’re doing, or something else house related like it and comment on it. If you know they are redoing the backyard to increase the living space and you find an article about DIY fire pits drop the link their social media and let them know you hope the renovation goes well. Liking their social media posts is a quick and easy way to keep that channel of communication open.

Send Holiday Cards

The art of sending letters might be disappearing, but holiday cards are still very much appreciated. Don’t forget to send out holiday cards that include a business card or two in case they have friends or family members that are going to be interested in buying or selling a home. The cards don’t have to be customized or fancy. Just the act of remembering to send a holiday card will let your previous clients know that you still value them. 

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Spring sales season is closer than ever! Are you ready to have the best spring home sales season yet? If you haven’t started getting ready yet you need to start right now so that you can get the jump on the competition and start out the season strong. Here is a quick look at the things you should be doing right now to get ready for a busy spring selling season:

Update Your Marketing Materials

Do you have enough business cards? Do they have all your current social media addresses and handles? If you’re going to change your Facebook page to a Facebook group to avoid a slump because of Facebook’s new newsfeed policy you should update your marketing materials and get new ones printed. Now is the time to go over all your marketing materials and make sure that your phone number, email and social media addresses are all current. Since you may have to wait a week or two for printing and delivery get those materials updated and ordered now so that they will arrive in plenty of time.

Upgrade Your Equipment

Do you need to upgrade your smartphone? If you want to make sure that you can take amazing looking photos and videos you should upgrade your phone to the latest model of whatever platform you prefer. These days it’s more important than ever to be able to get great photos and to take streaming video that will make buyers want to tour homes. You may even want to invest in a professional quality DLSR camera to get the best possible photos. And you will need a high-quality desktop or laptop to post all your listings. If you need to update your PC or tablet now is the time to do that as well.

Be More Active On Social Media

If you slacked off on social media over the holidays now is the time to dust off those accounts and get posting again! Start engaging with your followers and building those social media relationships now so that you’ll have a great base of followers once those listings start rolling in. Make sure that you’re posting plenty of photos and make sure that your content is always informative and engaging.

 

Read More: Marketing An Open House On Social Media

Stock Your Vehicle

You will probably be spending a lot of time in your vehicle once the sales season gets rolling so make an inventory list and get that vehicle stocked. Make sure that you have plenty of marketing materials and other information. But you also should keep a backup phone charger in your car, or a battery operated phone charger. And you’ll need a cleaning kit for the homes you’re listing as well as extra water for those days when you don’t have time to stop for a drink. It never hurts to keep some protein bars or snacks in the car too. 

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The spring sales season is starting to heat up and experts predict it’s going to be one of the best sales seasons of the last few years. Are you ready for the sales blitz? You should be working on getting your Edmonton real estate listings ready for spring with a spring staging makeover that will get buyers to place offers on the spot when they tour the home. Here are 4 can’t miss spring staging tips that will make buyers want to place offers:

Lighten Up

edmonton real estateWinter is almost over and spring is in the air. When you bring potential buyers to a home or host an open house in the spring the house should be flooded with as much natural light as possible. In the spring buyers respond to homes that feel open, fresh, and airy. To make that happen repaint with light neutral or white paint in the rooms. Change the drapes and replace them with crisp white curtains. Remove the blinds and get the windows professionally cleaned. Make the house sparkle with natural light to get the immediate attention of buyers.

Freshen With Flowers

Fresh flowers are a must for spring home tours and open houses. Pick fragrant seasonal fresh cut flowers and place them in every room. If you don’t want to spend a fortune at the florist at least keep a vase of fresh flowers in the entryway where potential buyers will be greeted with the light fragrance of fresh spring flowers and then place some house plants throughout the house to make it feel fresher. Fresh flowers are also a must to make bathrooms seem more spa-like and inviting.

Boost Curb Appeal

The way that the outside of the house looks is critically important. Buyers will decide in the first minute of seeing the house if they like it or don’t like it and the curb appeal has a lot to do with what they decide. Make sure that branches and brush are cleared out of the yard. Trim the hedges and overhanging trees. Sweep off the driveway and the walkways around the house. Add some solar lights so that the paths will be nice and bright at night or for evening showings. You can leave some white holiday lights up on the bushes or around the backyard because neutral white lights can be used all year. But pack all the other holiday decorations away.

 

Read More : 3 Ways To Boost Curb Appeal For Spring Homes Sale


Set The Stage For Outdoor Living

Buyers now expect a home to have some kind of outdoor living and spring is the perfect time to show off a home’s potential for summer get-togethers and evenings spent outside. Make sure that you highlight outdoor living space by dressing the patio, deck or yard with tables and chairs or other outdoor furniture. A chimney or fire pit is also something that buyers like to see. 

 

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Spring is the busiest home selling season. But even a strong market won’t help bring in buyers if a home isn’t staged to reflect the season. Staging always matters. Aside from the usual things that should be done before buyers tour a house adding some seasonal spring elements to your staging is important when it comes to making a great first impression on potential buyers. Here are a few spring staging tips that expert home stagers swear by for attracting the right kind of attention from spring Leduc home buyers:

Get Rid Of Seasonal Décor

Some people like to leave their holiday decorations up long after the holidays. While the owners might think it makes the house look festive it really makes it look tired and outdated to buyers. Spring is all about starting over and new beginnings and buyers want to envision themselves living in a new home. They can’t do that if the Christmas tree is still standing the corner, or there’s still a holiday wreath on the door, or if the Christmas lights never got taken down. Make sure that the owners remove or put into storage all holiday decorations and items so that the home looks fresh and new.

Hire A Cleaning Service

Leduc real estateA good basic cleaning might be fine at other times of the year, but potential buyers will except homes to sparkle from a fresh spring cleaning when they’re looking for a home in the spring. The best way to make sure the home is as clean as it can be is to hire a professional cleaning time. The cost is a great investment in attracting buyers. Professional cleaners will get all those hard to reach or easy to forget spots and the house will look and smell brand new again.

 

Read More: Why Do Real Estate Agents Use Home Staging Services?

Put Out Fresh Flowers

Nothing invokes the spirit of the spring-like fresh seasonal flowers. Put vases of tulips, daisies or other spring flowers in each room. The buyers who tour the home will get a great impression of the home when they see bright and cheerful fresh flowers in every room. Houseplants are another great item to use when staging a Leduc home to sell in the spring. The house should be brimming with new life and greenery to really capture the feeling of the season.

Get The Windows Cleaned

Spring home buyers will respond better to homes that seem light and airy. To make sure that the home is flooded with sunlight and looks bright and open replace the blinds and drapes and get a professional window cleaning crew to come and clean the inside and outside windows. A professional window cleaner can clean skylights, picture windows, and other special windows so that the house gets as much natural sunlight as possible flowing in. 

 

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Once the spring buying season begins home buyers will be inundated with Leduc home listings. After a while, all of those listings will start to look the same to them. If you want to catch the attention of spring home buyers you will have to make your listings stand out so that they really grab the attention of the buyers who are browsing for a new home. According to some of the top selling agents, these are the things that buyers will notice right away in a real estate listing:

Have A Great Photo

Edmonton home listingsWhen home buyers are looking through listing apps they are just skimming for houses that they find attractive. If the photo you’re using as a thumbnail or the main image on the listing isn’t a great one buyers won’t even open the page. The first photo should always be a well-lit shot of the front of the home. The house should look inviting and have great curb appeal. If the home doesn’t have great curb appeal then the first photo should be of one of the best features of the home. Maybe it’s a new kitchen or a spa-like bathroom. Whatever the best feature of the home is that should be your first photo if you don’t have a great photo of the front of the house.

Video Tours Are A Must

Today’s home buyers are sophisticated and used to modern technology. They want to see a video walkthrough of the home and the property before they decide they want to see the home in person. Adding video tours to your online and mobile listings is the best way to convince potential buyers that the home you’re listing could be great for them. Learn how to take good video tours and add them to your listings. It really is worth the effort.

Put The Important Information At The Top

Potential buyers will skim over the information in the listing looking for the important information. So put that information front and center at the top of the listing. Don’t get bogged down in words trying to pitch the house to them. Just give them the facts. Include the square footage, information about the nearest schools, and any selling points like a new roof, renovated kitchen, or bonus rooms. You can go into more detail further down in the listing. But if you want to get the buyer’s attention give them all the information they really want to know at the top of the listing. If they’re interested they will keep reading. If not, then they weren’t the right buyer for that home and burying that information lower in the listing won’t grab their attention anyway. 

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Spring selling season is just around the corner! What are you doing to get ready? If you haven’t started preparing for spring selling season you need to get started. During the holiday slow time is the best time to make sure that you have everything you need to hit the ground running once those spring listings start and spring homebuyers start contacting you. Here are the things you should be doing right now to get ready for the busy spring selling season:

Work On Your Listing Skills

Do you have a phone with a good camera or a professional quality camera to take great photos, create video tours, and film your listings? If not you need to get shopping. And once you have the right equipment you need to learn how to use it. Take that camera for a test drive and start practicing creating video home tours, video listings, and other multi-media listings. Those multi-media pitches are the things that are going to sell more houses this spring.

 

Read More : 

 

Why Photos Are So Important In Real Estate Listings

 

Update Your Promotional Materials

When was the last time you ordered business cards? You need to make sure that you have plenty on hand for the busy spring season. And when was the last time you updated your cards? Make sure that they have your current phone number as well as all your social media handles and your website on them. If clients can’t reach you or don’t know where to look for your listings that will end up impacting your sales.

Stock Your Vehicle

Make sure that you have a cleaning kit, extra promotional materials, extra phone chargers and other equipment that you might need already packed up in your vehicle. It’s also a good idea to put some water and some snacks or protein bars in there too. When you’re running back and forth on a busy day of showings and open houses having plenty of water and healthy snacks will save you time and cut down on the chances that you will end up eating unhealthy drive through because you’re pressed for time. Plan ahead and stay organized if you want to make this the best selling season yet.

Update Your Computer

When you work in the real estate industry you have to have the best tech available. It will save you a lot of time and frustration. So if it’s been a few years since you bought yourself a new laptop or computer check the post-holiday sales and upgrade your computer now. That way you’ll have time to get familiar with it and learn how to use all the cool features it has before the season really gets going. Making listings, keeping in touch with clients, and doing other work will be a lot faster and easier if you have an updated computer to work on. 


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Experts are predicting that 2018 will see a huge surge in home sales. When the spring buying season kicks off buyers are going to want to see these features in the homes that they are considering purchasing. If you have sellers who are getting their homes ready for the spring selling season these are some of the features that are going to make houses more attractive to buyers:

Quartz Counters

Granite countertops are out for modern homebuyers. That’s good news for sellers because functional and durable quartz countertops are a lot less expensive to install than granite countertops. Quarts is the new hot material for kitchen counters and sellers that are trying to upgrade their kitchens to be more attractive to buyers should definitely think about installing quartz countertops instead of granite.

Freestanding Tubs

One of the best upgrades that sellers can make in the bathroom, especially in a master suite, is to install a freestanding tub. Most buyers these days expect to see a freestanding tub or a garden tub in the master suite if not in the main bathroom. It gives that little bit of extra luxury that will make potential buyers more likely to buy a home.

Upgraded Bathrooms

If sellers don’t want to install a freestanding tub they should at least upgrade the bathrooms to have new fixtures, storage, and as many little spa like touches as possible. Homebuyers want to think of their new home as having a spa like retreat in the bathroom. To help make the bathroom look more appealing sellers should also put in a new bath mat and invest in new linens. If there isn’t a freestanding tub then new white fabric shower curtain and luxury linens will make a better impression on potential buyers.

 

. Easy Home Updates That Sell Homes Every Time

Storage Everywhere

Smart storage is one of the most often cited new trends when it comes to home sales. Buyers will be much more inclined to buy a house that has built in storage everywhere. This could be built in shelves in the living room, extra storage from open shelving and above counter storage over the cupboards in the kitchen, built in storage dining benches in the living room or any kind of storage that can be worked into the home’s existing framework.

 

It may cost sellers a little more to have custom cabinets and built ins made for the house but they will get that money back in a quick sale and increased asking price for the home. Storage is one of the best things that a motivated seller can add to a home to make it sell more quickly. If the house is older then added storage is even more important to make the home more likely to appeal to buyers.

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The winter season is notoriously slow when it comes to home sales. But the busy spring sales season is approaching fast. During the slower winter months, it’s the perfect time to make sure that you’re ready to hit the ground running when the spring buying boom begins. Here are four things that real estate agents should be doing during those slower winter months to get ready for the spring home buyers who are going to be swarming soon:

Educate Potential Buyers

Do you have a pool of buyers that are going to be looking for a home in the spring? If you don’t, why not? If you do, now is the perfect time to get them ready for home buying in the spring. You can send out newsletters with information about home loans and how to make sure their finances in good shape to buy a new home. Or you can host a small seminar for potential buyers to share information about buying a new home. Any activities that get your potential buyers thinking about what they need to do in order to be ready to buy in the spring is an activity that will keep you connected with potential buyers and get them focused on buying a new home.

Motivate Sellers To Start Getting Their Homes Ready

Are your sellers ready to put their homes on the market? If not, now is the time to get them started. The spring will be here before you know it and there’s always a lot of work that sellers should be doing to get their homes ready to go on the market. Keep in touch with your pool of sellers and regularly suggest tasks they can do now to make their homes ready to sell. Sent out regular reminders and a checklist of tasks that should be done before they market their homes.

Update Your Open House Kit

The winter time is the perfect time to overhaul your open house kit. Buy new cleaning supplies, stock up on candles, make sure your marketing materials look great and that you have enough of them. Make an inventory and keep it updated. The spring is going to be a very busy season so getting your kit ready to go now will save you a lot of time and stress in the spring. If you have new ideas for ways that you can impress buyers at an open house make sure those items are in the kit. Also, update your kit to include spring items like spring scented candles and other items.

Update Your Promotional Materials

When was the last time you updated your business cards and other promotional materials? Take this time to get new marketing materials printed. Update your website. Take care of all those little things you haven’t had time to do.

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Winter can be a tough time to sell homes. But updating your home staging and encouraging homeowners to try some of the hottest Pinterest and social media design trends can do wonders to encourage buyer interest even during the winter. Heading into the winter selling season you will sell more if you use some of these current design trends in your home staging:

Wood Accents

Smart homes are all the rage, but most homebuyers don’t want their homes to look like a cold industrial technology paradise. Adding wood accents is easy and inexpensive to do and it makes homes look warmer and more inviting. Great ways to use wood in your staging include things like adding a butcher block top island in the kitchen, using polished wood furniture in dining rooms and kitchen nooks, and staging living rooms with classic sofas and chairs that have wood accents.

A bolder approach is to create a wood accent wall in the living room or the bathroom to make the rooms like more modern but still cozy. If a home has wood paneling, which has been considered outdated for many years now, changing the color with some paint is a great way to make use of the existing paneling without making the home look dated.

Geometric Patterns

Geometric patterned wallpaper and backsplashes, along with geometric floor tiles, can turn a dated entryway, kitchen or bathroom into a social media ready and buyer friendly feature. Best of all you can use geometrically patterned vinyl decals on existing tiles to get the look you want easily and cheaply. Use geometric vinyl wall stickers to create a showstopping accent wall in the living room. The decals are easy to remove if the buyer wants to remove them but they change the look of the room instantly and cost very little. You can even get custom patterns and colors from sellers on sites like Etsy to create a unique one of a kind look for a home that you’re trying to sell.

Metallic Accents

Metallic accents done with a paint can transform a room. Light bouncing off the metallic accents will make the room look bigger. In addition, in the winter time, a touch of silvery shimmer or burnished bronze can make a home seem cozier, warmer, and more family friendly. Try painting crown molding with a metallic paint for a look that will instantly get buyer’s attention. Another great idea, put in some metallic tile accents in the bathroom to make it look more like a spa retreat. White towels and linens in a bathroom that has warm bronze or copper metallic accents will really appeal to buyers and make an older home look a lot more modern to today’s buyers.

 

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Feeling independent and responsible is a big part of home ownership. The best age to strive for a house is your twenties when you are still much agile so as to retire young.

 

Buying is absolutely different from renting. If you are considering renting over buying, you need to know what you stand to benefit from buying a house of your own.


Some of The Benefits of Buying Instead of Renting

 

You stand to benefit the following when you own a home of your own;

  1. Personalization and customization of your place
    You now own a house, no more rental agreement to stop you from getting a dog, cat or alligator. you can always tear out a wall, change the bathroom tile to one of your choice. Surely, an improvement made would increase the value of your property if well done. Doing all these in a rental house is not advisable, they only favor the landlord
  2. Increase in Value
    The value of homes increases over time, they tend to appreciate with time. When you sell your home/investment, any gain or return on it is yours to keep. But as a renter, it is your landlord's
  3. Device for Personal Finance Management
    Being a house owner can be a device for personal finance management. Since you know what to expect on your payments over the year, you can always prepare, plan and invest ahead for the future
  4. Being your own landlord
    The thought of owning a home is a great achievement and confident of its own. You can always watch the television late without your parent scolding you, your friends can party at yours without your landlord neither stalking aggressively at you nor banging on your door.
  5. Collateral for Bank
    You own a house, you own a bank collateral for loans. If there is a need to get a loan, you might not need to worry about being approved or not as you have a collateral worth the loan requested
  6. Extra Cash Flow
    You might not have to worry about working extra hours to get all your expenses catered for monthly, as that can be taken care of if your home as vacant space. Getting a tenant to rent it out to is a stand-by monthly income without stress

So, why not buy if you can afford it now rather than renting?

 

Thinking of how you might go cashless after buying a house?


Here are some things to do not to go cashless:

  1. Vigorously Save For Months (8 - 12months)
    Make sure you save up a large part of your paycheck if you really want to be a house owner at a young age.
    You might want to consider owning and monetizing a blog to help increase your stream of income to be saved
  2. Know The Area You Like to Live
    Some people don't see buying a house an option because they are not married and don't know where their spouse would like to live. Trust, if you are single and already own a house, your spouse would see the attribute of responsibility in you
  3. Stop Procrastinating
    "Procrastination is the thief of time". If are thinking of having a home in your twenties and you still find it difficult to save up 70% of your income now, you might end up not being able to achieve your desired aim. If buying a house is worth doing at all, do it well.
  4. Know How Much You Need
    You can't vividly get a house without knowing the exact amount you need to spend. You need to know if you would need a mortgage and how to get one. Be also aware of the types of loans that exist and see where you fit.
  5. Buy a home you know you can afford
    Being approved for a particular amount does not mean you must acquire a house up to that limit.
    Do not buy a house you would not be able to afford nor maintain.

 

Are you still thinking of renting a home over buying this 2018?

 

Have a wise rethink and choose the best, tomorrow might be too late.

 

 

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In the past, it was necessary for agents to have a really nice camera in order to get great photos for real estate listings. Nevertheless, these days modern smartphones have some pretty advanced cameras and it’s totally possible to get great photos just with a cell phone. That is if you know some of these cell phone cameras hacks to make sure that you’re getting the best possible photos:

Get The Lighting Right

You should never use the flash on your cell phone camera. It will make pictures look grainy and overexposed. The best way to get great photos indoors with your cell phone camera is to make sure that you get the indoor lighting perfect. Natural light is best, so open all the shades and drapes to illuminate the room. But if the day is cloudy or you’re taking photos at night you need to have professional studio lights. The good news is that these days portable photography lights can be purchased for very cheap on Amazon and other sites. For around $20 you can get professional quality lights that you can easily transport to houses. It’s a great investment that is well worth the cost.

Don’t Use Filters

You may be tempted to use filters on your photos in order to correct the lighting or make the photos look more appealing. Don’t. It’s easy to see when filters are being used and if you use them the potential buyers will wonder what you’re trying to hide by using filters. Don’t get too artsy with these photos. You’re trying to sell a home not make an Instagram art installation.

Use A Mount Or A Stand

If you’re taking photos in a low light environment, like indoors, the camera shutter will slow down to let more light in to get a better photo. That means there is plenty of time for your hands to shake, or jerk, or move and ruin the photos. The best way to get great photos of a home’s interior is to use a stand, a tripod, or some kind of mount so that you will be sure that the camera stays steady. You can use the auto self-timer on the phone camera to make sure that you have time to line up the photo and put the camera on the stand or mount before the phone takes the camera.

Don’t Use Fish Eye Lens

You might be tempted to use a fisheye lens to try and get more of the room in the photo. But a fisheye lens distorts the photo and makes it harder for people to gauge the size of the room. Take simple photos without any special lenses to get photos that accurately represent the room. 

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Potential home buyers do notice the small stuff, even the stuff that homeowners might think won’t get noticed. Things like clutter and personalized photos can make buyers lose interest in a home. But so can many other small details. So when you’re working a homeowner to get a home ready to sell make sure that they don’t forget about those five small details that potential buyer is going to notice:

The Front Door

The front of the house needs to make a great first impression or buyers will lose interest immediately. But there’s more to the front of the house than just the paint color or windows. The front door can either welcome potential buyers into the home or make them want to walk away without even going inside. The front door should always be power washed at the very least. But if possible it’s better to give it a fresh coat of paint and make it look bright and new.

The Driveway

The driveway is the first thing buyers will see when they pull up to the house. The driveway should be swept and look clean if it’s in the spring, summer or fall. In the winter it needs to be plowed or shoveled and should be free of ice. If there are cracks or defects in the driveway those should be fixed before the homeowner starts showing the house. The path to the house should also be clean or shoveled and any broken concrete or paving stones should be fixed.

Bathroom Grout

Dirty grout makes bathrooms look old and dirty even if they have been professionally cleaned. A quick and cheap fix is to through and regrouts the shower, tub, and other areas so that the grout looks fresh and clean when potential buyers are going to come to the house. Paying attention to small details like the grout can make even older bathrooms and kitchens appeal to buyers.

Smells

Don’t bother trying to disguise a bad odor in a home. The potential buyers will notice immediately. Avoid using wall plugins and other home fragrances. They can smell cheap and can trigger allergies in those that are sensitive to scents. Instead, make sure that you eliminate the source of any smells. Get carpets professionally cleaned, especially if pets were living in the home. Use a fabric refresher on upholstered furniture. If you want to make the house smell great bake something like cookies or pie.

Cracks And Blemishes

Homeowners might have lived with small cracks in the walls, paint blemishes and other defects for so long that they don’t even really see them anymore. But potential buyers will definitely notice them. Spackle any nail holes or cracks in the walls and make sure the rooms and the trim in the rooms get fresh coats of paint before showing the house. 

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The winter months are usually a slow time when it comes to selling real estate. But if you stage homes that are for sale properly that will boost potential buyer interest in the home quite a bit. The key to getting homes to sell during this slower period of the year is to make sure that your staging is beautiful and will make potential buyers want to have their own holidays in the home. Decorate with heavy throws, pretty window treatments, and seasonal décor to play up the potential of the home to be a great family gathering place. Here are some winter staging tips from expert home stagers to inspire your own winter staging strategies:

Keep Snow Where It Belongs

A cozy home with a beautiful snowy landscape will impress buyers, but you should make sure that the snow stays in the yard where it is supposed to be. Make sure that all walkways and the driveway are cleared of snow and salted. You need to be sure that buyers can get safely to the door and move safely around the property. Make sure there are no large snowdrifts on the edges of the driveway or on the patio or deck.

Turn Up the Heat

You are selling the idea that the home is warm and cozy in the winter cold. You can’t do that if it’s freezing inside. Make sure the heat is set at leave 70 degrees and give the house time to warm up before you have potential buyers in the home. That way when people come in from outside they will subconsciously think the house is warm and cozy.

Bake Something Seasonal

The smell of baking cookies, pies, or other sweets will enhance that cozy sensation for buyers. The home will seem like a perfect home for the holidays when they walk into the sweet smell of holiday goodies. It’s also a good idea to set up a coffee and tea station with seasonally flavored drinks so that they can help themselves to a hot beverage.

Organize the Front Hall or Foyer

When people come in, they are going to be wearing coats, snowy boots, hats and other winter gear. Set up a hanging rack or a pretty entry way storage bench with a floor mat so that people can wipe their feet or remove their boots, hang up their coats, and keep all their hats and mittens and other items organized. This will not only protect the home’s interior from wet or muddy shoes it will also show potential buyers that the house is functional in the winter and there is plenty of room to take off winter gear when people come in the house. If the home has a mud room come in that way instead of through the front door. 

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While it is a little tougher to sell houses during the winter, it is not impossible. The key to selling homes during the winter is to make sure that the house is inviting to buyers and looks appropriate for the season. Here are some tips from veteran real estate agents to make your winter open house more successful:

Make the House Look Welcoming

Pull out all the stops to make the house look welcoming to potential buyers. Make sure that all the paths and the driveway are clear of snow and well salted so that they are not slippery. Add a festive wreath or other decorations to the front of the house. Put some solar lights on the path to the door so that the path is easy to see. Holiday decorations and lights are a nice festive touch.

Make Sure the House Is Warm Enough

winter open houseIt is cold outside to make sure that it’s cozy and warm inside. Set the heat to at least 70 degrees so that people will want to take off their coats and spend some time in the house. If it’s a particularly cold day or if the house has drafts you might want to turn the heat up to about 72 degrees so that the entire house will be warm when the buyers are walking around the house.

If the home has a fireplace make sure that there is a roaring fire. That will add to the warmth of the home and show buyers that the fireplace is fully functional.

Decorate For the Holidays

Potential buyers will be thinking about how the house will be for entertaining and having family holidays. So play up the holiday theme. Add a decorated Christmas tree in the living room with lots of lights. Set up a dining table and chairs in the dining room and set the table for a holiday dinner. Add holiday themed throws and pillows around the house. And use holiday-themed mugs for offering coffee and tea and hot chocolate.

Get the Oven Going

Nothing says holidays like the smell of holiday cookies or pies baking. Bake a batch of sugar cookies or heat up a pumpkin or apple pie in the oven so that potential buyers are greeted with warm and familiar holiday scents like cinnamon and vanilla when they walk in the door. That will make the house instantly feel like home and make buyers visualize what it would be like to host their own holiday gatherings in the home.

Play Festive Music

Background music should be kept low, but it can definitely help the mood in the home. Play seasonal carols or light classical music to welcome buyers and encourage them to stay and look through the house. 

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Homebuyers are getting tired of cookie cutter granite counters and cutesy accents. Today’s buyers are looking for modern design elements and avoiding outdated trends like kitchen desks. Get a jump on selling in 2018 by learning more about the design trends that experts are predicting home buyers will be flocking to in the coming year like:

Quartz Countertops

Home Buyers EdmontonGranite has had its day. Now granite is played out and home buyers are looking for kitchen counters that are more durable and less hard work to take care of. Quartz countertops are inexpensive, durable, and look great in any kitchen. Expect buyers to be looking for homes that have updated kitchens that include quartz countertops in the coming year.

Colorful Kitchens and Bathrooms

Neutrals are out, especially in kitchens and bathrooms. Buyers want a retro looking colorful kitchens and bathrooms now. Remember those 70s kitchens with Avocado Green and Harvest Gold appliances? They’re back in a modern and updated way. Design experts also predict even more retro kitchen styles like the 20s and 30s era red, blue and even pink kitchen colors will be in high demand. Since the kitchen really is the heart of the home these days buyers want fun family friendly colors in the kitchen and not glaring white walls and stainless appliances. Black appliances will be more in demand than stainless. In addition, in the bathrooms fun colors are popping up on all the high-end designers must have listed.

Black Accents Everywhere

Buyers have had enough of generic brushed nickel accents. Black is the in color this year for everything from lighting fixtures to floor tiles to shower molding. An unexpected pop of black is a lot more appealing to modern buyers than brushed nickel or silver hardware. Changing out light fixtures and hardware is an easy an inexpensive way to get buyers more interested in a new home.

Painted Brick

Exposed brick is lovely, but buyers have had enough. Painted brick is the next big trend in homes that have exposed brick. Whitewashed brick or brick that has been painted a bright cheerful color is going to be a lot more appealing to buyers than a plain exposed brick in the coming year.

Geometric Patterns

Now that replaceable wallpaper has become cheap and easy to find geometric patterns are going to be everywhere in 2018. Buyers will be looking for fun geometric backsplashes in kitchens and bathrooms as well as geometric tiles on the floors in those rooms. Adding a few bright colored geometric tiles is easy to do and will make even an outdated kitchen look more appealing to modern buyers. Accent walls with geometric wallpaper sheets or walls that have painted geometric borders are what will be bringing in the buyers in the next year. An easy way to get this designer look is to use a patterned paint roller and a bright accent color paint.

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Data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by the REALTORS® Association of Edmonton.