Up until recently, selling your house basically meant sticking a sign in the lawn, and getting piles of offers within hours. But now that it's a buyer's market, you may have to work harder to sell your home. So, here are the tricks for selling your house in one week or less, courtesy of real estate expert Barbara Corcoran and ABC News:
- Boost your curb appeal. Do whatever you can to make the yard look bigger. Because it'll make your house look bigger and more inviting. In other words, remove the trash cans and your kid's climbing fort, and replace any big, bushy plants with low-to-the-ground flowers.
- If there's a name-plate on the front, or your door mat says, "Welcome to the Petersons" - get rid of it. Experts say you shouldn't display anything that's too personal. You want the buyer to walk in and feel like the house is theirs.
- So, what can you do inside your house to speed up the sale? Get rid of the clutter. If you want prospective buyers to notice things like size and shape of the rooms, the windows, or hardwood floors, get rid of any messy distractions. In fact, leave no more than 3 knickknacks on any piece of furniture or countertop. And that includes family photos and kitchen appliances. People like to visualize their own things in a home - and they can't do it if your stuff is all over the place. And if you have too much furniture - put some in the garage.
- And on open house days, send your pets on vacation to a friend's house, or a kennel. Get a lint roller and de-fur the furniture. And boil some water on the stove with cinnamon and orange peel to get rid of any "pet smell."
- Clean out the closets. Why? Because prospective buyers will open them! And if you can't fit all your clothes and things in there without cramming, they'll think that their stuff won't fit either.If you'd like to go further, check out Barbara Corcoran's book Use What You've Got, and Other Business Lessons I Learned from My Mom.