I'm so glad you are interested in creating a strategy for getting ready for the real estate market! Regardless of the type of market, putting your house's best foot forward is always beneficial to your bottom line.
The first step is to download my Getting Market Ready Strategy Guide. There are suggestions for updates, repairs, and "honey-do's", plus a place to write in your own to-do items. We will go over this Guide when we have our face-to-face virtual meeting and walk through your house.
Please note - and this is very important! I do not expect your house to be "show-ready" or even neat! My own house is a mess and I'd hate to have anyone judge me this far in advance of actually going on the market! And let's face it, during a period of enforced quarantine, it's pretty major just to get dressed - forget cleaning house!
The rest of these are tools to help you assess what you want to do, how much you want to do, and what the return on investment (ROI) might be.
Renovate to Sell. You can do it all yourself, or you can use a company like Curbio. Curbio specializes in refreshing or renovating solely with an eye to increasing return on investment (ROI) to sell. Here's a video explaining their service. The short version is this - they refresh or renovate according to your needs and wait until the house sells to get paid. Easy peasy.
The Cost vs Value report is put out by Remodeling magazine every year, with the assistance of real estate agents and can give you a general idea of what might be worth doing. For instance, 20 years ago, adding a fireplace had an ROI of more than 100% of the cost of installation! Not so much anymore. In our area, the 2 items with the biggest ROI are adding Manufactured Stone Veneer and replacing a garage door - neither of which may apply to your house. But doing a minor kitchen remodel can give you an ROI of 80% and that's nothing to sneeze at!
FHA and VA are fairly common types of financing in our area that have more strict requirements for the condition of your home than a cash sale or conventional financing. For instance, an appraiser will look at comparable sales in the area, but will also look for the following minimum standards:
Safety: The house should protect the health and safety of the residents.
Security: The house should protect the safety of the property.
Soundness: The property shouldn’t have any physical deficiencies or conditions affecting its structural integrity.
It can also be useful to know the life expectancies of the various components of your house. US Inspect is a well-respected home inspection company and will do a pre-listing inspection, which can be useful in learning what may be an issue with potential buyers, but also to help plan your strategy. Click on any of these four guides for the full PDF.