What "Turns off" Buyers
When buyers reject your home without looking it over, you need to think about what's driving them away. As a seller you might argue that the a buyer didn't stay long enough to give the home a fair chance! True, but the buyer may have had high hopes of making an offer on this home but was immediately disappointed because of a poor presentation.
Careless attention to odors, poor lighting, and dampness problems are a sure way to send prospects quickly moving along to another seller's home.
The following is a list of reactions and complaints that have killed any hope of an offer during only the first few minutes of the home visit.
Smells you're accustomed to may be repulsive to buyers who are non-smokers or have pet allergies. You're not likely to get an offer from a buyer with an allergy to cats if the most significant smell in your home is a stench from "kitty's" litter box.
Scrub the fixtures, buy a new shower curtain, rugs and towels--do what it takes to make the bathroom shine.
Poor lighting and switches that don't work
Bright, well lit rooms feel "alive" and full of energy. They stimulate more interest in the home and encourage rather than discourage possible offers. Prior to a showing, turn on all lights and open the drapes and blinds in every room. Give the buyer a relaxed, positive experience as he walks through the home, don't give him a darkened house where he has to fumble for light switches or search for basement light fixture drop cords.
Poor Curb Appeal
Take a good look at the front porch and wash, paint or repair anything that needs attention. Conditions such as a rusty mailbox, loose or sunken stairs, unpainted trim or a torn screen have probably become commonplace to you. However the buyer will be able to take it all in as he stands at your entrance waiting for the Realtor to unlock the door. Remember, this will likely be the buyer's "First (and only) Impression" of your home.
Wornout or dated carpeting
Check the grade to make sure it doesn't have low spots where pools of water can collect against the foundation. Make sure downspouts are attached so rainwater empties into the yard instead of against the foundation. Use a fan to create air movement and a dehumidifier to help dry the air.
Poor staging and awkward furniture arrangements
Deciding that it's too bad if the buyer doesn't like your furnishings and arrangements won't get it sold. Refusing to move your furniture into a more appealing arrangement will only keep your home on the market for a longer period of time. If you're serious about selling the home, the extra work is a must.
Busy wallpaper and too much of it
You want to appeal to the widest audience when selling a home, so take a serious look at your wallpaper and decide if it should be removed and replaced with paint. Don't paint over it, because it will be obvious that you did so and buyers will see it as a short cut to removing it.
Sellers who hang around during the showing