Maui G
Maui G
  • Hometalker
  • Little Elm, TX
Asked on Jul 25, 2012

Trying to sell my home

Carroll AMaui GVirtually Staging Properties, Inc
+11

Answered

Hi there, I purchased my home (that was built in 2004) as a Foreclosure in 2008. It was a complete mess, the paint schemes were horrible unless you were Willy Wonka with his addiction for chocolate, Some rooms were missing carpet, there were no light fixtures, the railing on the stairs was missing and even toilets were pulled out. - I have Before pics if anyone wants to see them http://missnowmrsblogger.blogspot.com/p/our-home.html
During the time I have lived here, I made the updates and changes as I went. I kept everything neutral because I knew I would sell after I was married. I now have my home listed and have had a lot of showings and I'm being told the home is too neutral, nothing stands out and it starts to blend into the rest of the homes seen that day, and it needs to be "modernized"? I have always understood that you do not want your home to be too modern, traditional, colorful or personalized because the buyer cannot picture themselves there. What gives?
Here is the new MLS listing http://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-detail/1521-Flagstone-Ln_Little-Elm_TX_75068_M76999-71798
Help me sell my home please! We are at the end of a 10 day option period on our new home!
14 answers
  • 3po3
    on Jul 25, 2012

    Maui, What gives is that you are selling in a buyers market. It's happening all over. I know a lot of people who had to relocate and couldn't sell their homes for months or more. I think things are a little better in Texas than in many other states, but it's still surely a buyer's market. Having said that, if you post some new photos of your updated home here and on your blog, folks might be able to help you. In the meantime, check out the staging advice of Virtually Staging, this helpful, smart and friendly Hometalker: http://www.hometalk.com/r9nmpfmae7 She might also be able to help you sell the house with her virtual staging services.

  • Selling a home is a trying experience even for those who have gone through it on several occasions. You are right to keep the colors neutral. The biggest mistake people make is they make their home or show their home with to much personal items being around. When people go in a home, they need to picture themselves in it. Forget about what other people are saying about what if's. They are normally those who are not going to buy regardless of what you do. Most of them have nothing else to do then to get free cookies on a Sunday and nose into other peoples business. Offer up a few hundred dollars towards new paint at closing. Get a warranty on the home to transfer to new owners. Get a new Agent! Sometimes that is all it takes. Hang in there, It will eventually sell. From what I see there is nothing you need to do other then work on price and marketing. From the look of your area the house is priced right. Neighboring homes are on both sides of your asking price. How much effort is the realtor putting on this sale? How long have you had it on the market? According to research most have been averaging around 30 days as of late. Sometimes it seems like an eternity when your in a crunch to buy.

  • Maui G
    on Jul 25, 2012

    My selling experience when I was in GA was much easier. Out here in TX the average days on market is 40 days. I have been here nearly a month and it is just frustrating to be priced properly but get told the house needs modernization. (I still don't understand what that means LOL) I'm am definitely checking out that link. Thanks Steve!

  • According to Zillow its less time then 40 in your area. But price looks fine. Hang in there.

  • Marianne Radley
    on Jul 25, 2012

    Not a bad house, but it could still stand some work. Nothing a new homeowner couldn't do cheaply, but alot of people just can't visualize what they can't see! I think the fridge is in a weird spot, and the cabinets could be improved upon, but again, an easy fix. Here's my suggestions: Colorful solid color bedding and bath towels. You can make some nice art by stapling remnant fabric to art canvases for over the beds.(Not too small -scale should be almost as wide as the bed) Maybe some color in the front yard would help. Wish I lived there, I'd gladly come help ya! Ask your agent about bringing in a stager. They can do wonders on the cheap! If you can't swing that, stop in to a decor (or fabric)store with pics and get some suggestions from the clerks - I used to work at one, and we loved helping out. Good luck! P.S. by "modernized" I think they meant to say updated, like spend some serious $$$ and gut! I say psshaw! Buyers are getting the deal of the century these days. All it takes is ONE PERSON to get it sold!

  • Carroll A
    on Jul 25, 2012

    I bought my house almost a year ago after looking for YEARS. This is what I would suggest. You have decluttered and took all personal things out. Which is great. But you did not replace it with anything. The house needs life. So I would add plants, real not fake. You need artwork on the walls. (goodwill and second hands stores are a good place to start) Swap out the pillows on the furniture for colored ones. Curtains in bright colors in the bedrooms. (the cheap panel kind, just to frame the windows) People are thinking that is a lot of window to buy curtains for. I think Marianne's idea of a stager is a good idea. First impressions are the biggest. So work on the curb appeal. Flowers and/or update the plants out front. Paint the front door to make it pop. Your house looks clean and has lots of natural light so make sure on showing days all the curtains are open and the house is flooded with light.

  • Stacey
    on Jul 25, 2012

    Okay, this is what i see, your home looks very well kept and from what i can tell the price is good, but unfortunately you have what i call "cookie cutter syndrome." 1) It's your typical tract home. It doesn't stand out. 2). You still have what is known in the business as, "builders grade" cabinets, countertops, bathroom mirrors etc. Unfortunately you are competing with foreclosures that have been upgraded and if i were a buyer i would be looking for those things. Even if i had to spend a little more to get them. My suggestions: Keep the neutral colors PLEASE. Add pops of color by accessorizing, pillows, flowers, artwork, etc. To save money staging, hit up your friends and family members and see what you can borrow! Remove any personal items, pictures etc. Don't go crazy accessorizing though, you still want to keep that nice, uncluttered look you've got now you just want to get some ooohs and aaahs. Unfortunately buyers forget that they are buying your house and not your stuff and that can work to your advantage if you play it right! Do your homework find out what's selling in your area and why and take your clues from that. i.e. upgrades, price, lot size etc. Curb appeal, if possible, paint your front door a different color, plant some colorful flowers, Change the house numbers etc. Here's a good link to what i'm talking about. http://www.bhg.com/home-improvement/exteriors/curb-appeal/budget-curb-appeal/ Hook 'em the minute they pull up and hopefully by the changes you've made on the inside, you can reel 'em in! Good luck!

  • Maui G
    on Jul 25, 2012

    Thanks Stacey! Welcome to Home Owners Asssociation Hell. I cannot add house numbers, cannot change door paint, I cannot add any flowers other than what are approved. The good news is there are no foreclosures or anything in my size and price range in the area other than new builds. I think my largest problems are the "no shows" from Agents that I keep getting. So frustrating!

  • Joan Good
    on Jul 26, 2012

    I second the advice to stage it better. I think that will go a long way with helping out once people are inside. You have that great game room! I'd really play that up! Toss the balls on the table and leave out a stick so people are enticed to play a little. Leave out a little pail of cokes on ice and some snacks. Let them imagine having their friends over to hang out and play pool when they live there! Call a coin op rental place and see about renting a classic video game or pinball machine (both set to free play) to put in the space for a month. You'd have the guys hooked in a minute! One thing that stands out to me in your pictures is the fridge, it's way too small for the space and gives it that "college students live here" feel. Could you rent a larger, fancier one? The kind that people who like to cook are likely to remember? As for the HOA, I live in a place with a very strict one! Read through it again for loopholes. Ours has some specifics that don't require approval, decor under a certain height, changes to plantings in certain areas, etc. Yours may have something similar that would allow you to put out a few pots of flowers, maybe one with a little house number sign in it! What about putting out the pots on days you have showings and then bringing them inside? Usually an HOA violation gives you 14-30 days to fix the problem, and you'll have fixed it by dinnertime. Also, try getting the names and numbers of the realtors who call to make appointments and call them back to ask if they came by and if not, why not. If they ran out of time that's one thing, but if they drove by and didn't come in, then you know you need to work on curb appeal! Good luck!

  • Jeanette S
    on Jul 26, 2012

    It has been proven that empty homes do not sell as quickly as do furnihsed ones...even builders stage homes. Good luck to you!

  • Stacey
    on Jul 26, 2012

    Oh, Maui, I feel your pain with the HOA my first home was in as HOA neighborhood, the would have a fit if we left our trashcans out to long or didn't mow our grass on time every week, i can't believe you can't plant flowers, that's ridiculous!! Have you had an open house yet? That might be something to try.

  • Your home looks charming online but definitely needs a staging makeover. The pictures just don't have that wow factor and 90% of home buyers search for their next home online and they say its the photos that are the most important factor so they have to stand out against the competition. We highly suggest hiring a staging professional right away! You need to spice up the living areas with colorful wall hangings, flowers and neutral rugs. Some pretty lamps and a simple white, sage green or tan coverlet on the bed with colorful pillows and wall hanging above bed for example. Check out our traditional staging website and click on the Gallery page at www.novacancy-atl.com to give you ideas of the staged look you need to achieve to get your home in more marketable condition to sell! Let us know your progress and would love to see some new pics of the makeover soon!

  • Maui G
    on Aug 14, 2012

    Home is sold!!! Wooohooo!!!!!

  • Carroll A
    on Aug 14, 2012

    Congrats!!!!!!

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