Although the real estate market is starting to drop from its COVID-fueled peak, there are still many opportunities to get the best possible asking price for your Florida property. To increase the dollar amount of the offers you get—as well as get more offers—there are a few important steps to take before you post your listing. Below, Paul Turovsky offers six key tips to help you maximize the sale price of your Florida property.
Find and use a real estate agent
It can be tempting to list a home “for sale by owner” (FSBO) to avoid paying realtor listing fees. But this decision can be penny-wise and pound-foolish. Not only does a licensed Florida real estate agent give you access to have your home listed on the MLS, but they can help you navigate the various financial issues you may run into, negotiate offers, and work with other agents. Often, a real estate agent can get you an offer significantly higher than an FSBO offer—enough to cover their commission and then some.
Provide some buyer incentives
During competitive seller’s markets, it’s important to do the groundwork to help your home stand out among the competition. One way you can do this is by offering buyer incentives—things like home warranties, brand-new appliances, or memberships to local organizations (like country clubs or golf courses). You may also offer to cover part (or all) of the closing costs, reducing the amount the buyer will be required to borrow. By highlighting these incentives, you’ll be able to set yourself apart from the crowd.
Keep your air conditioning on high
If you’re having an open house or your home is receiving a lot of interest from potential buyers, the constant opening and shutting of the door can increase the temperature in your home. And if your prospective buyers are hot, sweaty, and sticky, they may be less likely to look at your home in the best possible light. Keeping your guests cool and comfortable can set the stage for a better offer.
Some things you can do include:
- Setting the A/C to a lower temperature
- Offering ice-cold drinks to prospective buyers and their agents
- Keeping an eye on the weather forecast when scheduling showings and open houses
By taking these steps, you can show your home in the best possible light.
Update or upgrade your lighting
Speaking of the best possible light, one way to give your home a brighter and more updated look is by adding, updating, and upgrading your home’s lighting scheme. If your home has great natural light, capitalize on it by removing or updating your window coverings and making sure this lighting is front and center when prospective buyers visit your home.
If your fixtures are a little dated or drab, consider replacing them—or at least add soft LED “daylight” bulbs to give your home that Sunshine State look.
Arrange pest control
From rodents to cockroaches to love bugs to invasive snakes, Florida has some of the most intimidating pests in the country. Even if your home has a relatively typical number of outdoor pests, not much can send prospective buyers running faster than spotting roaches in your kitchen or a mosquito breeding ground in your backyard. By having a pest control company spray your home’s perimeter with insecticides, you’ll reduce the risk that any pesky pests will ruin your chances of an offer.
Clean and organize
One of the simplest—but most time-consuming—aspects of selling your home is cleaning, organizing, and staging it. Begin by removing any excess furniture or other clutter to give your home a more open look. (This process will also make it easier to do a deep clean.)
Next, give your home a top-to-bottom clean—wiping down all surfaces, washing windows, vacuuming rugs and carpets, and cleaning out from under furniture. Check for drips or spots in your kitchen cabinets, and don’t forget to dust and de-grease the top of your refrigerator!
But don’t feel as though you need to do this alone. Many companies offer home staging and cleaning services that can help you get your home in showroom condition; your real estate agent may have several leads. Some of these companies will even use their own furniture to give your home a more uniform design and style.
There is one caveat, though—if your home sits on the market for more than a couple of weeks before you accept an offer, you’ll need to continue these cleaning services (or clean your home yourself) to make sure it remains in tip-top condition until a buyer has signed on the solid line.
Following these six simple steps can help you better market your Florida property, increase the dollar amount (and number) of offers you get, and help you move on to your next adventure more quickly.