Kathy Henne: Appeal to First Time Buyers


By Kathy Henne

Regardless of conditions in the real estate market, first time buyers will always be a driving force for home sales. As a seller, there are a few steps you can take to make your home, even if it’s an older home, be more appealing to this demographic.

First understand that most young consumers will be turned off by worn or outdated carpeting. If you have wood floors beneath your worn, outdated carpeting, give strong consideration to ripping up the carpet to expose the hardwood flooring beneath. You’ll probably need to condition and polish these hardwood floors. They may even require some repair, but it will be worth the results.

Another fashion consideration is furnishings from the sixties and seventies. Antiques are great, but this dated furniture could be another turn off for buyers considering your home. If possible, put the dated furniture in storage, or remove at least a couple of the pieces, to create more space and a give a more contemporary feel in your rooms. Elaborate and heavy window treatments make your home dark and may also give your home a dated feeling. You may want to remove these and put up something that will flood your home with lots of natural light. Buyers love lots of natural light.

Finally, the walls: First time homebuyers are not fond of wallpaper and hate the idea of having to rip it down and resurface the walls. It may be a good idea to make your rooms more appealing by removing old wallpaper and painting the walls with neutral colors.

It sounds like a lot of work, but it can all be done at a fairly low cost. If young buyers feel they have to invest too much work and money into making your home into their home, they may give you a low offer or mark you off their list entirely.

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