What should I do to Prepare my Queens Home for Sale?

Preparing your home for sale in Queens can be a daunting task, but with the right preparation, you can increase your chances of a quick and successful sale. Some homeowners wonder if they should stage, make major repairs, do renovations, vacate tenants, etc. There are a lot of variables so it’s good to get an idea of what preparation steps are common in Queens, and which ones can help you have a more successful sale.

Here are some steps you should take to get your home ready to hit the market:

Step 1) Get a Valuation.

When you decide that selling may be an option, we always tell people that the first step is to have a valuation done. In other words, you want to fond out what the house (or apartment) will realistically sell for in today’s market. You can do this by hiring an appraiser, or you can do this by having a Realtor (or Realtors) give you their Valuation AKA Broker Price Opinion. Remember, what you think the property is worth does not matter as much as what a buyer thinks the property is worth. Ultimately, the true market value is what a buyer is willing to pay. The last thing you want is for your inherent bias to lead you on to the market with unrealistic expectations. Once you have an idea of what the home is worth, then you decide whether the value is acceptable for you. If so, move on to step 2 🙂

Step 2) Get a Breakdown of Closing Costs.

If you are satisfied with the valuation, then the next step is to understand closing costs and your net profit (AKA Walk Away Dollar). This is the most important number because it is what you will walk away with after all fees, mortgages, transfer taxes, etc. are paid. An appraiser won’t be able to provide this for you, but an experienced Queens realtor should have a net sheet ready for you after providing the valuation. If the estimated net profit is acceptable for you, then you can move on to step 3 🙂

Step 3) Consider Tax Implications.

Now that you have a realistic expectation of the property value, and you know what you will likely walk away with after all closing costs, you should also consider tax implications from the sale. Transfer taxes are built into the sale and laid at closing, however, capital gains taxes are handled after you sell so it’s important to know how much of the profit (if any) you will need to set aside for capital gains taxes. Things to consider are the total gain, improvements made to the property over the years, tax exemptions, 1031 exchanges, etc. Again, an experienced Queens real estate expert will be able to walk you through these things and recommend good resources should you need any.

Step 4) Decide to Sell or Hold.

Now that you know what the house is worth, how much you will net, and what you are looking at in terms of capital gains, you can make a well informed decision as to whether or not selling is the right option for you. If you decide that the net profit after all closing costs and capital gains taxes are not acceptable, and you are not open to a 1031 exchange, then you may decide to hold on to the property and focus on monthly cash flow. In that scenario, you will want to get rental comps for the property and get advice on what repairs you can (or should) make in order to maximize the rental income. On the other hand, after all information is gathered and considered, if you decide that you would definitely like to sell, the you can move on to step 4 🙂

Step 5) Clean and De-clutter.

Once you decide to sell, the next step is to actually start prepping the home for photos, showings, open houses, etc. The way you can accomplish this is by giving the property a thorough cleaning and de-cluttering. This will help agent and potential buyers see the full potential of your property and make it more attractive to them. Be sure to clear out any clutter and personal items, as well as deep cleaning carpets, windows, and appliances. You’d be surprised what a difference cleaning and de-cluttering can make. This is one of the most inexpensive ways to make your home look bigger, better, and more move-in ready.

Step 6) Do Repairs and Cosmetic Touches.

Before listing your property, take the time to make any necessary repairs and cosmetic touches. This is another one of the inexpensive ways that you can make your property more attractive once it hits the market. In our opinion, cleaning, de-cluttering, and minor repairs have some of the best ROI (return on investment) when selling a property in Queens. This may include fixing leaks, replacing old appliances, or updating outdated fixtures. This can also include a fresh coat of paint, re-grouting, etc. Not only will this make your home more appealing to buyers, but it can also help you avoid any costly surprises during the inspection process.

Step 7) Stage or Do a Clean-out.

Staging your home is an essential step in preparing it for sale. This involves arranging furniture and decor to create an inviting and appealing atmosphere. This will help potential buyers envision themselves living in your home, making it more likely that they’ll make an offer. Here in Queens, bringing in outside furniture for staging is not common, however, whenever we sell owner occupied homes where there is already existing furniture, we like to suggest home staging tips that will help the home show in its best light both online, and in person. If the property is not owner occupied or there is not a good amount of furniture to work with for staging, then getting it cleaned out selling vacant is usually the best strategy. In these situations, we typically refer clients to one of our preferred clean out companies, then we connect them with one of our preferred cleaning companies so that the place can look spacious and clean. For vacant properties, virtual staging can also be an effective strategy in letting buyers see how the space can be used.

Step 8) Finalize Price.

Now that you have the house show ready, the next step is to finalize your list price. One thing we tell all of our sellers is that comps are only good for one month so if more than one month has past since the last valuation, you will want your agent to run comps again just to see if anything has changed with recent sales, recent pendings, available inventory, month’s supply, etc. Pricing your property correctly is crucial to a successful sale, and an experienced Queens realtor will be able to guide you through that process. Be sure to consult with your agent and make sure they have a good understanding of the current market conditions in your neighborhood, and that they can provide you with the most strategic list pric to hit the market with.

Step 9) Prep for Photos.

Now that you have the list price set, next step is to get ready for photos. If you live in the property, this may require some work on your part, but rest assured that all of the work you put in will be worth it because as they say, “you only have one chance to make a first impression.” It isn’t necessary to have the property “photo ready” every time someone comes to see it, but for those initial photos, it is highly recommended! Professional photos are a must when you list your home, so make sure that your agent has a good real estate photographer on their team. They will help showcase the best features of your property, and make it stand out from the competition. Do your best, but don’t go crazy. If you wait until every little thing is perfect, you may never list 🙂 The idea is to make the property look as good as possible, given the current condition of the home.

Well, that’s it! By following these steps, you’ll be well on your way to getting your home ready for the Queens’ market. Remember, the goal is to make your home as appealing as possible to potential buyers, but you don’t have to go and start renovating every room or spending large amounts of money. A good agent will be able to tell you which repairs, improvements, and cosmetic touches will give you the best return on investment. With a little bit of effort and preparation, you can increase your chances of a quick and successful sale in the competitive Queens NY market 🙂

Need Help? Contact Us.

Share this post:



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

MLS Logos