Preparing for Fall

The Fall real estate market in Highland Park may not be as frenzied as in the Spring, but there are still buyers who need to move. This year, with stronger than expected Spring and Summer markets, there is no way to predict what the Fall with bring.  With school starting early this year, it's time to start preparing if you are thinking of listing your home. How do you help your home stand out this Fall?

The most important factor in determining whether your home sells or sits is PRICE. With winter just around the corner, prices will continue to drop. In order to snag a buyer, your home will need to be priced either at or just below the market value to be attractive. The only exception is a home that is completely, 100% DONE, DONE, DONE. These truly rare finds can get away with being priced higher and with any luck could actually receive multiple offers. Even the most impeccable homes will turn off buyers if they are overpriced.

Since most of us live in nice homes that could still use a little work, here are some ideas that can make your home appealing to buyers this Fall:

  • Add seasonal decor to your front porch and entryway.
  • Paint your front door a rich color. First impressions are everything.
  • Plant seasonal flowers, keep the yard free of leaves and have gutters cleaned.
  • Bring as much light into your home as you can for the colder, darker months. To accentuate natural light, clean your windows and blinds, especially in rooms that get a lot of sunlight. Add lighting to darker spaces with new lamps.
  • Clean the fireplace and chimney. It’s also a good time to have the chimney inspected. Chimney repairs can be expensive, so best to take care of issues before a buyer finds them. 
  • Create a mudroom. Even if you don’t have a dedicated mudroom in your home, now’s a good time to think about organizing and stocking an entryway that will serve as a “mudroom” area for cold and wet weather. Put down an indoor-outdoor rug to protect the floor. A fun and rewarding weekend project is to build a wooden shoe rack, coat rack or storage bench for your entryway.
  • Have your furnace serviced. Nothing is more attractive to buyers than a home that feels loved and well maintained.

So, our advice this Fall is to bite the bullet and get it done. Make your house look crisp on the outside, cozy and warm on the inside, and price it with the intention of getting it sold. You might not get as much as you think your house is worth, but that’s ok. Fall is an amazing time to buy! With proper guidance from a stellar real estate agent (and we know a few), you might just make up the difference on the other side of the transaction. 

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