When selling real estate, HOW you sell depends on WHAT you are selling. While many of the steps and process are the same for either a single family, detached home, or a condominium, there are differences when it comes to getting your condo ready to sell.
Condo “Curb” Appeal – Is There Such A Thing?
The answer to that question is easy….YES! But it’s a different answer than if your selling a home with a yard.
In a condominium building, your “front yard” is your Lobby. While it is considered a common element to the building for which you have the right to USE, you don’t have a lot of say about how it looks on a day to day basis. That is left to your Board of Directors and/or your Property Manager. If you are getting ready to list your condo For Sale, and there is a stain in the carpet, chances are it won’t be taken care of just for you!
Where your “curb” appeal starts, is inside your Front Door! Now, you can call this Staging as well, but let’s still look at some things you may NOT Have considered in the Curb Appeal of Your Condo.
Again, in a condominium building, you can’t just randomly paint your front door. Colors have to match. But this type of maintenance request CAN be sent to your Property Manager. Maybe when you were moving a piece of furniture in, you scratched the paint on the door. If there is going to be a delay in getting the door painted by the HOA, you MAY be able to do it yourself, once you obtain the proper paint color from the HOA. Again, this will vary from building to building. If your door is wood, and has been scratched, this will be a more involved repair, and again the HOA process will vary. BUT, finding out what the process is early on will help you determine if you CAN get something like your door repaired before potential Buyers come knocking.
Oh Boy! Here is an often neglected item in a condo that really CAN make a difference! When Buyers enter your condo, they are going to do a quick scan of what they see first, but there attention is going to quickly be drawn to the view out those large picture windows. If you are in a high-rise building, all the more important is that view. And if that view is all spotty, it certainly takes away from the view.
Now, I’m certainly NOT TELLING YOU TO HANG OFF YOUR BALCONY AND WASH WINDOWS!!! NO! NO! But you can (and it’s actually YOUR responsibility) to wash the windows you have access to from your balcony. Most likely, that’s the sliding door, and the large picture window next to it. Get yourself an extension squeegy, a bucket and maybe a step stool. That crystal clear view will make a world of difference.
Now, if you live in a mid-rise building, or don’t have a balcony, there probably will not be much you can do about window washing. Most HOA’s have this on a set schedule, and the most you can do is find out when your building, or the group your condo is in will be done.
After Dark — What’s That View
Even in a mid-rise condominium, there’s a pretty good chance you will have some sort of a city view. Whether it’s a little, or a lot, you want to point it out. While most of your showings will probably happen during the daytime hours, a big selling point to your condominium can be that night-time view. When I’m looking at your condo as we get ready to list it, I’ll make note of the view. Then, in your actual listing, I can mention, “For an impressive look at what it’s like to live in Number 1514, plan an evening showing to see the stunning skyline views.” Get it? Think about your lifestyle…you’re probably gone to work during the day as well. So when you are home at night, relaxing, what do you get to see? The View.
Another area that will vary greatly from building to building. Many high-rise buildings have strict architectural guidelines as to what you can have on your balcony. This done from a safety concern (plastic chairs at 20 stories up are a lethal weapon when blown off a balcony) and the fact that you may see numerous balconies from yours. If you’ve spent some money on nice furnishings, make sure they are clean, and arranged. The Buyer’s just might want to have a seat and enjoy the view…and imagine it when they are living there!
If your HOA allows things like potted plants and flowers, make sure they are alive and healthy, not dead or just a pot full of dirt. Also, the idea that less is better applies too. If you got so much on the balcony that it makes it look small, you might want to consider a balcony “down sizing.”
It’s really hard to change that first impression, but there are things you can do in a condominium that help your Condo Curb Appeal.