In Praise of a Clean Slate

By on 11 January, 2017 in Real Estate, Sandra Nickel with 0 Comments

cleanslateThe New Year always excites me. I see it as a “clean slate,” and an opportunity both to start anew and to start new things. 2017 is no different.

Last weekend I purged my closet of years’ accumulation of miscellaneous stuff. This past Friday our Hat Team met with a facilitator to brainstorm how better to serve our clients and customers in the coming year. And my desk today is covered with materials I’ve assembled to help us implement those ideas.

What, might you wonder, does this have to do with real estate in Midtown Montgomery? Everything! For you see, buyers are always looking—subconsciously or otherwise—for an opportunity to start anew and solve their problems in the process. That’s why property condition and presentation is so darned important!

When they move, buyers want to solve their own space problems. So we’re always counseling prospective sellers about the importance of decluttering, both room by room and in key storage areas like cabinets and closets.

Most of us live day-to-day with little imperfections in our surroundings. But when we are getting ready to move, we talk about “looking for a new place.” So when the search begins, the impressionable little person in our subconscious takes us literally and expects “new.” That’s why as a seller you hurt your value by offering an allowance for improvements (carpet, for example) or repairs. That subconscious in the buyers’ mind can’t see the new thing so just rejects the home as needing too much work.

Paint and cleaning products are cheap. And elbow grease is free! So if you’re thinking about selling your home this year, remember that a clean slate is what you’ll want to create to get top dollar for your home. Happy purging!

Sandra Nickel has been listing and selling residential real estate for over 30 years, most with an intense focus on Montgomery’s Midtown neighborhoods. Sandra serves on the Mid-Alabama Coalition for the Homeless, the Cloverdale Business Coalition, Historic Southview, the Volunteer and Information Center, Landmarks Foundation and her own neighborhood Garden District Preservation Association.

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