Anchorage has historically low inventory right now with only 463 single family homes for sale so if you’ve been contemplating selling your home, now is the time. PLUS, mortgage interest rates have just dropped to 4% for a 30 year fixed rate.    Low rates put more first time home buyers in the market which catapults move-up buyers into the market. So here are some helpful hints if you’re ready to put your home on the market. Let’s start at the front door with a new welcome mat.  In another week or two, you will be able to re-stain or paint your front steps and add a fresh coat of designer color  to the front door. It’s too soon to hang a flower basket but make sure your walk-way is free of any ice or dirt.  

Now for the inside. Get your windows washed inside and out, including any lint on the screens. Shampoo the carpets and send out your area rugs to be cleaned. If you have draperies, get them cleaned as well. This may sound silly but change out all your light bulbs to the highest wattage possible and leave them all on for a showing. If your carpet is more than ten years old, you may want to consider replacing it. A single carpet color throughout the house will make your home more spacious. The more flooring breaks in the home, the more disjointed and smaller the space  will appear. The same is true for wall color. Your favorite color may be blue but it may not be your potential buyer’s so paint it out.  

When preparing your home for sale, your goal is to create a neutral shell that any buyer can visualize living in with their existing furnishings. That includes taking down stuffed animal heads and in today’s world, political memorabilia. If you have pets, make sure you eliminate any bad odors by removing little boxes and doggie diapers and spray an air neutralizer, as well as opening windows for fresh air.

Many sellers are confused about whether to remodel the kitchen which is the most expensive room in the home. My answer to that is NO and it’s also a NO to the bathrooms. At best, spending thousands of dollars on those two remodels may only return fifty cents on the dollar if you are lucky. But, you are still second guessing what a future buyer’s vision may be for those rooms. Instead, add some new knobs and pulls.  Clean the garage and  consider putting a primer on the walls. It is also fairly inexpensive to paint the floor. Garages are important to buyers so don’t forget about them and also the homes’ closets. Take a lesson or two from Marie Kondo and only keep clothing that gives you joy and brings back fond memories. I tend to shop when I’m on vacation, despite my husband’s protests, so much of my clothing reminds me of the trips I’ve taken. At least that’s the justification for my over-stuffed closet. Nevertheless, I’m going to make a public promise to practice KonMari during my Easter break! 

There are also little things to do prior to a showing like closing the lid on the toilet, making the bed, doing the dishes and turning on all the lights. I crave fresh spring flowers and a vase full of flowers on the dining room table or kitchen island makes everyone feel like spring is really here, especially if they are yellow, the happy color. What buyers want most is to know that the home has been well-maintained and cared for by the seller and you’ve demonstrated that by doing all of the above. And best of all, you’ve added value to your home.