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Your Fixer Upper Will Sell In No Time If You Do These Things

Fixer Upper

So it’s time to sell that fixer-upper that you’ve been wanting to put on the market forever, but you’re not sure how to market your listing in the most attractive light. We’ve got some advice. You don’t have to be a magician to sell a fixer-upper, but you do have to do a few things in order to make your listing seem more attractive.

No home is perfect, but there are certain homes that are perfect for the right buyer. Here are a few tips that will allow you to get the most out of your fixer-upper.

List your home at a reasonable price

A home with a good value will sell itself, but it’s not as easy as simply subtracting the cost of repairs from your home’s value. Newer homes sell for top dollar, because they don’t require any work. Be realistic when you’re setting the listing price for your fixer-upper.  If your home is in need of some major renovations, don’t expect to sell it for what you bought it for. With that being said, buyers aren’t always searching for just a home. Sometimes, they are in need of a location that’s close to work or a top-notch school district. Evaluate all of these things when you set your listing price. If you need to adjust along the way, then do so!

Use an agent

A good realtor knows that each home has its own quirks. A good realtor also knows their target market, and can most likely help to sell your home more quickly than you would be able to by doing it without his or her assistance. Real estate agents also have plenty of experience in setting price points and usually have a solid understanding of what will sell and what wont.

Don’t alienate non-traditional buyers

Your target buyer doesn’t particularly have to be one looking for a home. Contractors and property investors are also options when it comes to selling your fixer-upper. Some investors see these types of property as the perfect opportunity to turn into a quick profit. With that being said, some buyers who are interested in flipping by making necessary repairs will find your home attractive in order to rent or resell. You never know who your home is going to appeal, so don’t exclude anyone from the audience pool.

Highlight the best features

Are there gorgeous hardwood floors underneath that old carpet? How about a lot of acreage that will allow for additional square footage? Make sure to play up your fixer-upper’s appeal by emphasizing all of your home’s best qualities. Buyers want to feel connected to a home, so use that as an opportunity to share what you love about it. Check to see if you can afford to fix up several aspects of the home before listing it, even if they are small repairs. Even these things can go a long way when it comes to being able to tell buyers what you have invested into the home.

Exposure is key

Targeting a wide market is the best thing that you can do for your fixer-upper. This means pulling out all of the stops when it comes to marketing your property. At The Real Estate Book, we offer a comprehensive marketing package that involves a multimedia package for listings. Real estate agents can manage listings, create ads, and use digital exposure in order to push your listings out to an expansive audience. In the age of digital media, Facebook advertising can be successful as well. Just made sure your pictures are clear and clean. Your potential buyer for a fixer-upper is going to look different than the traditional homebuyer, so it’s important to market your property as many ways as you can.

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5 Key Areas to Declutter Before You Move

By Aly Finkelstein, Houzz

Moving is stressful, expensive and time-consuming. As a professional organizer for going on six years, I have yet to meet a client who has looked at me and said, “I love this!” It is the universal misery.

While I understand people not enjoying the process of moving, it can be made much less painful if it’s done in a systematic and efficient way. Here are five areas of your home to declutter before you move. Starting in these areas will greatly reduce the amount of stuff you take with you from your current home to your new space.

Declutter 1: Organized by Aly, original photo on Houzz

1. Medicine Cabinet

You won’t believe how much stuff you have in this space that you never use. First, remove every pill box and bottle. Lay them out on your counter and dispose of expired meds. To safely dispose of medicine, check out the Food and Drug Administration’s site or contact your local trash or recycling facility about proper disposal methods.

Once you have cleared out your unwanted meds, place the items you wish to keep in a clearly labeled moving box.

Tip: Use a piece of paper to create a moving key. Label each of your boxes with a number. Then write down the contents of that box next to its corresponding number on the moving key. Every item that is moved from your old home to your current home should go in a numbered box and be on the corresponding list on the moving key.

Declutter 2: Neat Method San Diego, original photo on Houzz

2. Pantry

Like the medicine cabinet, the pantry is a place of no return! Declutter your pantry by emptying it shelf by shelf. Check expiration dates and staleness. If you are sure you won’t use something and it is still fresh, donate it to your local food pantry. Plenty of people can benefit from the things you no longer want or need.

I recommend decluttering your pantry three days before your move. Leave out necessities to consume before the moving trucks arrive.

Declutter 3: Case Design/Remodeling Indy, original photo on Houzz

3. Basement

Basements tend to be universal dumping grounds. If you have been living in your home for a long time, it may be necessary to go as far as getting a dumpster to unload no longer used items.

Be as honest with yourself as you can about what is essential to take with you. I can’t tell you the number of people who have stored every last Lego and art project from their now-grown children. Remember that saving your most special items is not the same as saving everything.

Ask family members what they would like to keep, and arrange a time far in advance of your moving day for them to come and collect their belongings.

Declutter 4: California Closets HQ, original photo on Houzz

4. Garage

Like the basement, the garage typically holds tools and household items that are rarely, if ever, used. Moving is the time to ask yourself what value these items hold.

When decluttering the garage, use three large cardboard boxes: Label one “trash,” one “donate” and one “keep.” Use these boxes to help sort what is coming with you from what is garbage and being given away. Using a system to declutter will help you visualize how much you have, and it often helps people feel better about throwing things out and giving items away.

Label the “keep” box with a number, add the contents to your moving list, and you are on your way!

Declutter 5: Organized by Aly, original photo on Houzz

5. Closets

If you aren’t someone who declutters on an annual basis, this area of the home may seem daunting, but in truth it’s the easiest. You know what you wear and what you love.

As a professional organizer, I love this place the most in regard to a move. This is the chance to really change the look of your closet.

I recommend that my clients purchase all the same hangers and sort their clothing into categories. I put all the blazers together, for example, and sort them by color. Then all the denim, all the tops and so on. Your closet can actually be completely organized in its old space and moved in wardrobe boxes. This way, your catalog and sorting systems stay perfectly in place if you label your boxes and unpack in order.

If you declutter your closet well before you move, you can use large plastic containers to pack away off-season items. Remember to label those containers as well and add them to your moving key.

Related Links:

Clear Out Medicine Cabinets First

Take Time to Tackle the Basement Mess

Closet Organizers to Help You Pack Up Neatly

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Opportunities to Make a Home “Green” Exist on a Spectrum

Green Homes

When thinking about “green” homes, consumers often think first about new home construction and the opportunity to build a fully sustainable home from the ground up. However, there are also vast unrealized opportunities to increase the resource efficiency of existing homes. In the recent major revision of coursework for the National Association of Realtor’s Green Designation, the content was revised to amplify the focus on existing homes.

The opportunities to increase a home’s efficiency occur on a spectrum, from energy surveys – a systematic review of how energy is used within your house – to major remodeling and retrofitting, and finally to new home construction. We will discuss each of these opportunities here briefly, but urge all interested readers to obtain additional education on the topic with Green Designation coursework through NAR, either in the classroom or online.

In each of these phases, smart home devices and technology may be installed as needed or desired. Smart home installations have applications across the entire spectrum.

Energy Survey

The simplest and quickest approach to increasing your home’s efficiency is to do a walk-through energy survey of your house. An energy survey is sometimes called a clipboard audit, simple assessment, screening or preliminary audit. The walk-through survey usually doesn’t include any diagnostic testing, but it might. The evaluator may look for symptoms that indicate a problem, or concentrate on a particular problem like comfort or health issues. A home energy survey takes about an hour to complete. After the survey, you can implement suggested improvements immediately, or over time.

Resource Efficiency

After performing your energy survey, the opportunity is to increase a home’s resource-efficiency as part of routine or major maintenance projects. These can include replacement of major appliances, heating/cooling systems, windows, entryways, security systems, ventilation, plumbing, and so on. Upgrade projects like these enhance or maintain a home’s value when compared with new and upgraded homes in the market area.

A quick and easy fix is replacing your old incandescent or fluorescent light bulbs with more energy efficient LED light bulbs. Not only do these LED bulbs save energy, which in turn saves you money, they last longer than traditional bulbs, sometimes lasting years depending on how often you use them. And as the technology has improved, the price of LED bulbs has dropped dramatically over the years, making their use a no-brainer.

Also use surge protectors for entertainment systems or other high-energy drawing electronics. Make the surge protector easily accessible, so that at night or when not in use, you can turn everything off with the flick of one switch. This helps prevent “ghosting”, or the draining of electricity by electronics even when they are turned off.

Further, consider installing new fixtures like water-saving faucet aerators in the bathroom or kitchen. Pipe wraps around your pipes will also help save energy.


Opportunities for resource-efficiency retrofitting are enormous during major renovations. Deep energy retrofits are on the extreme end of cost and effort when it comes to making homes more energy-efficient, but can achieve dramatic energy savings.

The process typically involves resealing the building envelope, super-insulating, upgrading systems including HVAC, and installing energy generation capacity like solar photovoltaic (PV) panels. If a homeowner plans to do major renovations such as replacing a roof or siding, it may be an opportunity for a whole-house deep energy retrofit. The first step is a thorough, professional energy assessment to determine which actions will produce the most benefit.

New Home

Finally, a new home, especially a custom home, provides the opportunity to make a myriad of choices to achieve all the benefits of a resource-efficient home. From high-efficiency systems to innovative materials, and more, the opportunities for upgrades are vast. The real estate professional can play a valuable role in guiding a client to authoritative sources of information and helping put together the design-and-build team who will transform the client’s vision of a new, resource-efficient home into a reality.

Some real estate professionals who have made sustainability a major focus of their businesses find that clients and customers turn to them as a source of information about greening homes. Expanding your network to include green vendors, energy assessors, builders, designers, and other service providers benefits your clients and customers and enhances your reputation, credibility, and appeal.

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