You don’t put your house for sale to have a sign sit idly in your backyard. You put your house on the market to sell it. The quicker your home sells, the more likely you are to get that ideal price point. Two days = better than 2 months. Plus, you don’t want to be worrying about your current home when you’re ready to move into a new one. So what’s the difference between a quick listing and a stalled one?

Every house and market is unique. Popularity of the neighborhood, amenities, location, nearby schools, and much more factor into the success of your sale. However, here are five dependable ways to ensure you get your asking price fast:

1. Hire a good realtor who is a skilled negotiator/marketer.

To get the desired price for your home, you need someone in your corner who can negotiate. It’s tempting to jump at the first offer, but what if it’s not as high as you wanted? This is where a good relator comes in. The right person can explain the true value of your home and defend it. They also can get the word out about your listing to the right people so you receive offers of higher caliber.

2. Fresh paint in neutral colors.

A new coat of paint goes a long way in rejuvenating an aging room. Don’t fall into the trap of picking a trendy color that will go out of style. Focus on bright, neutral colors that are timeless and pair well with the new homeowner’s furniture. Also keep in mind how the paint shows up when photographed. For many people the pictures you post are their first impression of your home.

3. Keep your home "show ready".

Have you ever been to a model home? They’re perfect. You won’t find trash in the open trash cans, messy closets, or stains on the tile. Sure, this isn’t reality for most people. But when selling a home, you want potential buyers to embrace the fantasy of living there. You want them to picture themselves in the space, not see how someone else currently uses it. Getting your house to this level takes effort – and you may have to hire outside help. But it’s worth the investment.

4. Professional Photos

Because of technology it’s easier than ever to take and upload pictures. The cell phone camera has certainly evolved. However a listing with professional pictures is still going to stand out. Lighting, angles, viewpoint…A professional home photographer knows how to present your home as the best it can be. They can also set up virtual tours and presentations for the photos that help potential buyers easily navigate your home from the web. When looking for a new home, a buyer is likely going to click on the flashy, easier to understand listing over grainy and dark images.

5. Expert pre-marketing/web presence

Google “homes for sale.” You'll see a ton of results! Don’t let your house get lost in the sea of options. Make sure you’re working with a realtor who can get best utilize the assets available on the web. This is your chance to show a potential buyer how AWESOME your home is. A good agent can put that awesomeness into words and combine it with those great photos to create a vision that stands out from the crowd. And they’ll do it fast – the sooner the word is out, the sooner your homes sells.

Unforeseen circumstances occur. A buyer backs out. You have to make repairs on your home. These things are often out of your control. But what you CAN control is choosing the right real estate agent for your home. The right agent will walk you through the best practices to get your home show ready and then make sure it hits the market swinging. Say goodbye to that “For Sale” sign and hello to the “Sold” sticker.

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