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Old 02-16-2013, 11:40 AM   #16
luvavacation
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Thanks so much for opinions!

My mom had the house painted an off-white/slightly beige colour, and we repainted the whole house a similar neutral before sale. Everything is clean and sparkly, as sparkly as a 9 year old house can be!

All carpets were cleaned, they look good, it was just two old people living in the house. The carpets are not top-of-the-line though, and if it were me buying, I would replace them, but looks wise and in the pics online, they look great, no stains.

The cabinets are in great shape, but they are not the upgraded, ceiling to wall cabinets. The countertops are builder basic, but not damaged. Floors are linoleum sheet, but there is a hardwood walkway from the different sections of the house. For my taste, I don't like the colour of the wood, it is too light, I like cherry or bamboo, but that's when I get into "if I replace it, the new buyers might not like it, and there goes the money".

I have air fresheners throughout the house in an apple pie scent. I will be replacing them today with a more spring-type scent, since the realtor requested this change.

The house is already priced over $30,000 less than what my parents bought it for new, and I am willing to bargain if an offer comes along, but if I lower the price another 20 or 30 thousand, then bargaining will come off that price, no? People will always want to bargain down a price, I know I would!

So concensus is that my incentive idea is not a good one, but wait on lowering price, then lower price again, or perhaps offer realtor incentive. I suppose baking some really tasty cookies isn't a good realtor incentive, is it? It will have to be money. As if 6% isn't enough already!

And thank you for the caring words, Buckalew. They are words I need to remember more often!

I appreciate all your insights, and it is a good thing I came here before emailing my realtor back!
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Old 02-16-2013, 11:52 AM   #17
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Oh honey get RID of the air freshers!!!! That would be a deal breaker for us right there.
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Old 02-16-2013, 11:59 AM   #18
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Oh honey get RID of the air freshers!!!! That would be a deal breaker for us right there.
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:04 PM   #19
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Unfortunately, I'm with Mystery Machine. It took me months to get the smell of the air fresheners out of my house after I bought it. Had it not been for other factors that made me want the house, I'd have walked out of it.

Anyway, what is the listing price of the house? It makes a difference if it is higher or lower than $500,000. (And for those of you that are shocked, I live in an area where you cannot touch a 3,000 sf house with a basement for under that!)
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:18 PM   #20
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We actually refused to put in an offer for a perfect house because there was such a strong air-freshener smell. We wondered what bad smell it was trying to cover up.
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:19 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvavacation View Post
The house is already priced over $30,000 less than what my parents bought it for new
Good update. You've got to get away from this thinking, though. It's irrelevant today. Markets fluctuate, and almost everyone's home values have depreciated over the past few years. We've been in our house 24 years and it's value has gone up and down, up and down. Sometimes shockingly up, and sometimes shockingly down. If we were selling at any of those times, we would have had to go with how the market was, you know?

Quote:
The cabinets are in great shape, but they are not the upgraded, ceiling to wall cabinets. The countertops are builder basic, but not damaged. Floors are linoleum sheet, but there is a hardwood walkway from the different sections of the house. For my taste, I don't like the colour of the wood, it is too light, I like cherry or bamboo, but that's when I get into "if I replace it, the new buyers might not like it, and there goes the money".
I definitely wouldn't get into replacing the hardwood floors, but you might consider adding granite, IMO. The house sounds nice, but laminate countertops are a real turn off to buyers today - again, IMO. I know it sounds dumb, but today's buyers want to say they have a "granite kitchen". Sounds like the cabinets are fine, and the kitchen is relatively new, so it's not a major undertaking, really.

As far as the air fresheners, people think you're trying to hide something with them, and also, some people "react" to them (my DH would, too).
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:23 PM   #22
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This is a really interesting book for any homeowner. The author is "in your face" but what he has to say makes a LOT of sense. He takes you room to room in your home and makes you think about what's really going on there. I recommend it as a good, perhaps eye-opening read, whether you're selling your home, or not.

101 Things I Hate About Your House: A Premier Designer Takes You on a Room-by-Room Tour to Transform Your Home from Faux Pas to Fabulous

http://www.amazon.com/Things-About-H.../dp/0757315674
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:29 PM   #23
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You know, one other thing that crossed my mind that could help as much as decreasing the price is staging. Even if you can't afford a professional stager, you may be able to use furniture and accessories you currently have or borrow some from friends/relatives. It's definitely something to think about.
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:35 PM   #24
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I think the main point for me is that the house is unfurnished.

People need to see the potential in a house. When I walk into an unfurnished house it looks small. I need to see where other people place their kitchen tables, sofas, coffee tables, tv's beds etc... I could never buy an unfurnished house.

Take your $1500 incentive and hire stagers to bring in tasteful furniture. Forget the upgrades. I bet that will help! Good luck!!
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:39 PM   #25
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When I was house shopping any incentive that was listed made me think automatically there was something wrong with the house before I even saw it. It didn't matter what it was for, just one of those mental things, I guess.
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:42 PM   #26
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DH and I are starting to look at houses to buy and we both know there is no way we want to buy a house and have to do anything with it. It's interesting to read that realtors are saying a lot of buyers are like that because I thought we were the only one. But yeah I would rather buy a more expensive house that is just ready to move in, practically perfect than have to buy new appliances, replace carpet, etc.
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:50 PM   #27
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For a small fee, I think you could make minor changes that would help a lot. How about replacing the countertops with Corian? It's often recommended for midprice houses as you can recoup a much large portion of the costs. (You don't want to over-upgrade, of course.) I don't love wood laminate flooring, but it's a serious step up from linoleum sheet. For not too terribly much more than you were planning to gift your buyers, you could upgrade the kitchen to look much more attractive.
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:56 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiCat View Post
DH and I are starting to look at houses to buy and we both know there is no way we want to buy a house and have to do anything with it. It's interesting to read that realtors are saying a lot of buyers are like that because I thought we were the only one. But yeah I would rather buy a more expensive house that is just ready to move in, practically perfect than have to buy new appliances, replace carpet, etc.
I don't think you are unusual. It's just difficult for older folks to understand sometimes because when we bought houses, it wasn't unusual for us to buy "fixer uppers" or "starter homes" that we could afford, even though they weren't the homes of our dreams. We may have spent years getting them to how we wanted them, or maybe we never really did. For our parents before us, it was even more severe. They often bought very small homes and had a lot of kids, but were ok with living with one bathroom and kids sharing bedrooms, etc. They may have seldom done many upgrades.
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:59 PM   #29
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For a small fee, I think you could make minor changes that would help a lot. How about replacing the countertops with Corian? It's often recommended for midprice houses as you can recoup a much large portion of the costs. (You don't want to over-upgrade, of course.) I don't love wood laminate flooring, but it's a serious step up from linoleum sheet. For not too terribly much more than you were planning to gift your buyers, you could upgrade the kitchen to look much more attractive.
You can get granite for the same cost, or less, than Corian today.

I agree with you on the floors, but a lot of people HATE laminate. (Which I learned from reading here, lol.)
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Old 02-16-2013, 01:06 PM   #30
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You can get granite for the same cost, or less, than Corian today.

I agree with you on the floors, but a lot of people HATE laminate. (Which I learned from reading here, lol.)
I've always thought that laminate was an amazing solution to the look of wood floors without the cost, but having lived in a house that has them for a mere 7 months I can see why people hate them. They look beautiful, until they start peeling. I have small children who spill things, drag their toys, and otherwise do things that damage them way too easily. Give me tile any day!
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