Mike Lightbourn's Bahama Advice Column
Prepping Your Bahamas Home for Sale
2017-08-25 10:16:33 by Mike Lightbourn
Getting ready to sell your Bahamas home?
Here are a few frequently asked questions.
– How do I prepare my home for sale?
– First of all, you’ll need to find the right Bahamas Real Estate Association-licensed agent to work with.
This can be a bit awkward because we live in small communities. Most people seem to know and are on friendly terms with at least a handful of agents and brokers. How do you choose?
Simple. You select an agent the same way you would pick a lawyer, architect or doctor.
You’re going to want an agent who’s committed to the process. That means someone who will work with you for weeks, perhaps even months, before the home actually sells.
What happens before the listing is signed?
The agent will walk through your home to view the property with you. He or she will draw up a list of any improvements that should be done to ready the home for sale.
This may include anything from trimming the bushes in the garden and decluttering to repairing cracks in the walls and painting.
With a fresh eye, your agent will pick up things you no longer see because you’ve become accustomed to them.
For instance, the faucets in your bathroom may be coated in lime and need replacing.
Your agent may be able to recommend reliable tradesman who will get the job done on schedule.
Name the three top rules for sellers?
– Is the Bahamas home in market ready condition? Has it been well maintained with periodic updates?
Are there any eyesores? For instance, is the wrought iron gate rusted? Is the front entrance shabby? Are the light fixtures encrusted in dirt and filled with dead bugs?
The seller may have become so used to these “little” things he’s stopped seeing them. Small things can make a big impact.
In terms of updates, are your counter tops dated? Do your cabinets need painting?
I’m not for one minute suggesting major updates unless they are entirely necessary. Typically, the seller will not recoup major costs, but these are sometimes necessary to put a home in a more saleable condition. However, there are several relatively inexpensive improvements that can help prep your home for sale.
– By now, my readers are familiar with the concept of decluttering.
It can’t be overstated.
The typical Bahamas homeowner accumulates a lot of Knick knacks and junk over the years and may not realise how much clutter they’ve built up.
Take for instance, those Lladro figurine collectibles. Although the Lladro collection comprises some wonderful and expensive work, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. A shelf of Lladro in most cases will come across as nothing more than clutter that dates the home.
This is why we tell sellers to declutter and depersonalise their homes. Buyers want to be able to envisage their footprint on a home – not someone else’s.
Your home should be squeaky clean. No smudges on the walls, windows or fridge. No dirty grout. The sinks, bathtubs and windows should sparkle. The walls may need painting.
Questions? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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(Mike Lightbourn is president of Coldwell Banker Lightbourn Realty)
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