Ask a Broker: What can we do to prepare to sell our house this spring?

Doug Landin
Ask a Broker
Located next to Gore Creek, enjoy the heated patios while listening to the sounds of rushing waters. This 5-bedroom home at 2943 Bellflower Drive in West Vail listed for $2,890,000 features numerous upgrades, including heated driveway and walkways, sunken hot tub, new retaining walls and more. Added bonus: a two-car garage for easy mountain living.
Slifer Smith & Frampton/Courtesy photo

Buyers are searching like sleuths to find hidden gems for sale and be the first in the door. Robust demand and inflation have driven sellers and their brokers to raise list prices dramatically after an initial 30-day marketing launch.

Doug Landin

Rarely are sellers chasing the market down in our current environment. If you are a seller, now is the time.

Per the National Association of Realtors, predictions for 2022 are that the Great Migration will continue, and our Vail Valley’s “unreal” estate will not miss a beat. Even slight interest-rate increases are not likely to slow us down, as many of our buyers offer cash. An increase and change in the capital gains tax might be a compelling motivator for some owners to become sellers, but only time will tell.

If you are thinking about selling for whatever reason, now is the time to start the process. Here are some things to do now regardless of the direction the market takes.

The first step is to clear the clutter. Stand in the middle of every room of your home and take 360-degree photos of all your stuff. Review the photos and notice how the clutter stands out.

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Do this for each room in the home. Clear the countertops, vanities, dressers, and table tops. If you have exercise equipment living in a bedroom, it needs a home elsewhere. Corral the cords for all your devices, then store them in a place where you can easily remember to find them. Shower by shower, buy matching shampoo and conditioner containers, and dump the extra bottles of body wash, loofahs, etc.

Stow away all but a very few family photos and group them in one small corner. Buyers want to see themselves living there, not you!

This spacious two bedroom, two bath unit with ski slope views is one of only a few available fractional residences in the Four Seasons Residence Club. Enjoy all the fabulous amenities of the Four Seasons Vail including ski valet, shuttle service, ski and bike rental, fitness center, year-round outdoor heated pool and hot tubs, concierge, heated underground parking with valet service, and more. A 1/12th ownership interest with trading privileges at other Four Seasons Clubs is available for $525,000.
Slifer Smith & Frampton/Courtesy photo

Don’t know where to start with closets, drawers and shoes? To clean out your closets, get rid of any clothes you haven’t worn in the past year and keep your “now” clothes, neatly color coordinated on matching hangers (not wire). For drawers, shelves and other stuff crammed into hiding places, if you haven’t used the items in a year, get rid of it.

If you have kids, get rid of any age-inappropriate gear. Make space for homework projects and special stuff. If you have teenagers, I’m not sure I can help you! Ask them to come up with a plan for their stuff. And, when all else fails, enlist their support with a major “incentive” program that includes a jackpot of something. Money usually works.

Once upon a time, people would need to make some significant cosmetic updates to the home to be competitive as they got ready to sell. Nowadays and with where we live, that’s not necessarily the case. That said, if you want to make some simple improvements before listing, repaint any rooms that have “loud” colors. Swap out some of those heavy elkhorn chandeliers for contemporary fixtures. It will quickly change the entire look and feel of the room. If you have appliances that are outdated, consider replacing those.

Using these simple and easy steps will set you up for a fast and lucrative sale.

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