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For years the idea of a starter home has usually meant a property that may need some work, but a recent survey by Caldwell Banker discovered  that most first-time buyers aren’t in the market for those kinds of houses. According to the poll, 87 percent of recent first-time buyers said that finding a move-in ready home was important to them. These buyers, who accounted for 33 percent of existing home sales in December, stated that the condition and quality of the Chester County PA real estate they purchased mattered a great deal. One Realtor has referred to these folks as “HGTV buyers.’

“This is absolutely the story of the market, “ says real estate agent Beth Freed. “It seems buyers will pay a premium , engage in a bidding war, and even overpay just to avoid buying a ‘project’ house.” So what does this mean for you as a seller of Chester County PA real estatehouses? Nearly all Realtors will tell you that a house which has been well maintained and needs few, if any, repairs, even cosmetic ones, will sell faster than others. While some renovations/repairs may be relatively expensive, such as installing a new roof, repaving the driveway, or upgrading appliances, most agents advise a seller not to undertake major renovations, especially in the kitchen or bathrooms. They advise not spending more than you’ll recoup in the sales price and understanding that major renovations are generally a matter of personal taste..

Remodeling is for buyers, not sellers. Major renovations usually don’t pay for themselves, let alone add enough value for you to make a profit. So why would you want to go through the hassle and the expense right before you move? Concentrate instead on smaller fixes with bigger impact and let your buyers remodel to suit themselves. In addition to removing all clutter from your Chester County PA real estate, , thoroughly cleaning the whole house, and downsizing in regards to furniture and personal items, you should also seriously consider:

  • Adding a fresh coat of paint (in a neutral shade) where needed
  • Presenting a well-tended yard
  • Fixing dripping faucets and checking all caulking

If you are prepared to invest some money to improve your home’s presentation, start with the most cost-effective projects and remember to keep a journal of jobs and receipts. Home improvement costs are often deductible (when costs are incurred 90 days before the sale and paid within 30 days after the sale). While lawn-mowing and weekly cleaning bills do not qualify according to IRS regulations, new paint, a new water heater, or new gutters usually do apply. Some hints:

  • Replace broken gutters and shutters.
  • New paint indoors or out is usually approved by the IRS for deduction if completed and paid for near the time of sale.
  • New floor coverings (in neutral shades) on kitchen and bathroom floors may be another affordable investment which can speed a sale by appealing to buyers’ desire for a property that is ‘ready to move in,’ particularly if the current style of colors are dated.
  • Repair broken woodwork, loose planks, and creaky stairs. No buyer wants a home that needs structural repairs.

Hardwood floors are a plus. If you have hardwood floors, consider removing anything covering, them up, especially if the carpet is worn. Refinish the wood if necessary.

So if you want a quick sale and hope for top dollar, take steps in advance of listing to convince potential buyers that your home is move-in ready and definitely one worthy of an “HGTV” buyer!

Want New Windows and Doors For Your Chester County PA Real Estate?

  


For the latest Chester County PA real estate market conditions in your neighborhood, please call me at 610-564-SCOT or visit
ChesterCountyHomeSource.com.

Summer Time Bug Defense

by Scott Darling

Visit houselogic.com for more articles like this.

Copyright 2011 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®

Displaying blog entries 1-3 of 3

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Scott Darling
RE/MAX Action Associates
403 W. Lincoln Highway #101
Exton PA 19341
(610) 594-SCOT
610-363-2001
Fax: (610) 363-5275