Bergen County NJ Real Estate Tour  


Dress Your Home for Success




It's more than a house.
You're not selling a house ... you're selling a home. Far more than four walls and a roof, a home is a personal shelter, a haven from the pressures of the outside world, and a warm, inviting setting for family living.

Terry & Bill spend hours helping clients stage their homes to maximum advantage.  Here are 16 Ways to "Dress your Home for Success."

 1 The importance of curb appeal can't be over-emphasized.  If you were a buyer, would you be excited about going through the front door of your home? Many a broker has had to cancel a showing because buyers, upon seeing a house from the car, wanted to keep driving past. A neat yard, bright flowers, a clean pathway and an inviting front door create an initial positive impression.

2 The front door should be filled with life. Especially welcoming is a new door mat. Door hardware should be sparkling; the key should turn easily. Make sure the doorbell works.

3 What is the first thing your buyers will see and smell when they open the front door? This room, its accessories and its fragrance will be critical to your buyers' first impressions. They may not yet be consciously aware of it, but, at some level, the buyers have already made a decision at this point as to whether your home is on the list or off the list. If you lose them here, it will be extremely difficult to win back their enthusiasm, no matter how nice the rest of your home.

4 If it's broken, fix it. Most buyers tend to overestimate the cost of repairs, assuming it will cost 2-3 times what it actually will to make them. If they remain interested, buyers will deduct this amount from their offers. More often, though, buyers assume evidence of needed repairs suggests your home hasn't been well-maintained, and their there are likely to be other problems they can't see.

5 Fresh, fragrant flowers throughout your home are a delight, especially in the entry, living room, kitchen, bedrooms and baths. This is one of the easiest things you can do to ensure your property shows beautifully.

6 Set your table as if you're expecting to entertain important friends that night. You're in the imagination business now, and efforts such as this help your buyers visualize themselves at that table when your house becomes theirs.

7 Check out your linens. Use your most attractive, bright sheets, and pillow shams, as well as matching towels and bath mats. Buyers love that beautiful Ralph Lauren/Polo look. You will be amazed at what a difference this effort will make in how your home is perceived.

8  When you know your home is going to be shown, open all the draperies, turn on all the lights and leave classical or other calming music playing in the background. If showing agents have to do all this while their with their buyers, they can't more fast enough to stay ahead of them -- and dark, lifeless impressions of your home will already have been made.

9 With all the latest advances in aromatherapy, it's easy to make your home smell wonderful. Diffusers can leave a lavender scent in the bedrooms, rose in the baths, orange in the living room. You've heard that baking a batch of chocolate chip cookies just before your buyers arrive is appreciated. Don't have time? Try a couple of drops of vanilla on the bottom of a 250-degree oven -- it produces the same effect and won't add calories.

10 Reduce family photos to a treasured few. Remember, you're a home seller now, not a homeowner. It's time to put away collections that personalize your house. Try to make it easy for buyers to picture your house as their own.

11 If your home has patios and decks, make sure they're not places to store junk. Consider these outdoor spaces additional rooms that buyers will imagine themselves using. Arrange them with patio furniture and a profusion of flowers. If you have great vistas or a lovely yard, these are places you want your prospective purchasers to linger awhile. Make these places inviting!

12 Unmade beds, dishes in the sink, toilet seats up, hair in the shower, and visible trash in the wastebaskets are complete turnoffs for buyers. It's the hardest thing to do as a seller, but don't leave your home without putting it in show-perfect condition. The ideal buyer may arrive an hour after you walk out the door.

13 The mechanical area is a surprisingly good place to invest some elbow grease. Make this area sparkle like a ship's engine room: be sure all the equipment is dust-free and the walls painted (rather than the typical drywall-taped look.) Consider giving the floor a coat of paint. When the guts of your home look well maintained, it inspires confidence in the buyers, prompting them to think you have taken excellent care of your property.

14 Garages are often the last place given attention by sellers, and this is a major mistake. These spaces should be immaculate, well organized, and look finished.

15 Many sellers ask us about whether making certain home improvements would facilitate selling their property faster or for more money. Here are the very best places to invest money before putting your home on the market: the replacement of worn-out or dated carpet and a fresh coat of exterior and interior paint. As long as your color choices are neutral, the impact of these two efforts is tremendous. Your property will seem fresh and new to buyers and superior to most of the competition they will also be seeing.

16 If you do nothing else, be sure your property is spotless, organized and squeaky clean. The result of this one effort cannot be overstated.



Research shows ... 

Buyers make the real decision about a house in the first 11 seconds of seeing it.  



Although a home is the biggest purchase most couples ever make, the decision to buy is never a purely rational one. They buy more with their hearts than with their heads. 

Beyond the obvious considerations of location, size, quality and design, buyers look for special qualities that appeal to their emotions. 



"Terry and Bill"
Licensed as Theresa and William Hassan
Coldwell Banker
55 N. Maple Ave. Ridgewood, New Jersey

"Bergen County, NJ - A wonderful place to call home"
Bergen County Real Estate Specialists