The blossoming of spring flowers typically coincides with a surge in new listings hitting the market. But this year, the coronavirus has disrupted the hot home-selling season. With shelter-in-place orders in place, home buyers are not out in their usual spring time droves. Chances are, they wish they were. Space, fresh air – these are things more urbanites are dreaming about.
There are bright spots pointing to a housing market recovery. Many New York City area families, spurred by the pandemic, are seeking to make a move now to escape to homes offering more space and more fresh air. There’s a new wave of city dwellers shopping in the suburbs, according to a recent Wall Street Journal story.
The declaration earlier this month that real estate is considered “an essential business,” fortunately, has kept things in motion, albeit at a slower pace. As an industry, we’ve adjusted the way we do business, offering virtual home tours and participating in remote home closings. It’s the new normal.
Yet, some buyers may not take the plunge until they can tour a home in person. That means that when the pandemic subsides, there could be a pent-up demand for inventory. So, this is a good time to start preparing for a housing market that will recover once this crisis is over.
Here are my tips on how to position your home to be ready for a post-pandemic sale:
Boost your home’s curb appeal: Trim shrubs, power wash your deck, paint your shutters and trim, mulch flower beds, replace any broken light fixtures, flower pots, or other décor damaged by winter. Your home needs to “wow” a buyer before they ever step foot inside the front door.
Organize the interior: With most of your meals being cooked at home, your pantry may already have undergone a makeover or a cleaning out. If not, organize shelves in the kitchen and other areas of the house. Fold towels and sheets. Consider ordering drawer organizers and/or matching baskets to keep supplies tidy.
Purge: In this time of uncertainty, consider what truly brings you happiness inside your home and do a deep purge of what doesn’t. Have a dumpster delivered and discard any furniture that is worn or outdated or otherwise overcrowding a room in your house. Work with your realtor to get some advice on what will work well when photographing your home for listing.
Fix up, renovate, and repair: Get your home in showroom-ready shape. From broken drawer pulls and torn window screens to faulty faucets and sinks slow to drain, make a list of small repairs and needed renovations throughout your home. Fix what you can and research vendors to help perform major repairs when our lockdown orders are lifted.
Interview realtors: Now is also a good time to talk with prospective real estate agents who can market your home effectively for a quick sale at the highest possible price. Seasoned real estate professionals who have seen an array of market conditions will help you navigate a post-COVID real estate sale. If you choose to work with Fiona, you will have access to a global referral network and superior technology enabling face-to-face communication between agents, sellers, and buyers.
I would be happy to discuss the preparation of your home for sale, whenever the time is right for the real estate market, and for you. I can be reached at 914-414-5147 or Fiona.firstname.lastname@example.org.