The spring 2024 house selling season starts warming up as early as February and peaks in April-June. Home sellers who want to capitalize on high buyer demand need to start preparing months in advance for a spring 2024 sale.
With the right preparation and pricing strategy, you can maximize your home’s appeal to spring buyers. Your goal is to have your house in prime selling condition before peak activity hits. This involves everything from deep cleaning to staging to pricing competitively.
Planning ahead now will ensure you don’t miss out on increased buyer interest and bidding wars that often happen in spring. Follow the tips in this guide to get your house ready for a successful sale. With the right preparation, you’ll have buyers competing for your listing come spring 2024.
Set a Target Sale Date
The first step in preparing for spring 2024 house selling is to set a target listing date. Ideally, you’ll want to get your house on the market in March or April 2024.
- Listing in these months allows buyers to view your home with spring flowers blooming and the yard looking its best. The end of winter cabin fever also means more buyers will be eager to view homes.
- Aim to have your home listed by mid-March at the latest. Homes listed earlier tend to sell faster and for more money than those listed later in spring.
- Avoid trying to time the “peak” weeks of spring, as the market can fluctuate. Consistent exposure from March through May will maximize your home’s visibility.
- Listing in the spring, rather than summer or fall, means you’ll have abundant daylight during showings and open houses. This showcases your home’s best features.
- Set your target sale date with your real estate agent’s guidance. They can advise you on ideal timing based on insights into buyer demand, market forecasts, and experience with past spring sales.
A March or April 2024 listing date will put your home in prime position to capitalize on pent-up buyer demand. Time it right to maximize foot traffic and offers.
Consult Your Real Estate Agent
Choosing the right real estate agent to represent you in the sale of your home is one of the most important decisions you will make to get the best price in 2024’s competitive spring market. Their expertise in pricing, marketing, negotiating offers, and navigating contracts can make a significant difference in your bottom line.
When interviewing potential agents, ask about their recent sales track record in your neighborhood and experience selling during the spring rush. Look for an agent who is plugged into the local market and has innovative marketing techniques to generate buyer interest. Consider an agent who offers professional staging services to showcase your home.
Discuss your target asking price and how they would strategize pricing and negotiations. Make sure you are confident in their competence, communication style, and commitment to providing five-star service. It’s key to find an agent who will work tirelessly on your behalf to get your home sold quickly and for top dollar.
Once you’ve selected an agent, they will help you determine a competitive market price and recommended list price based on demand and comparable sales. A savvy agent keeps their finger on the pulse of buyer demand and market trends. They can advise you on any repairs or improvements to make prior to listing.
When it comes to their commission, agents typically charge 5-6% of the final sale price, which is split between the buyer’s and seller’s agents. While it is negotiable in some cases, commission rate does not necessarily reflect the quality of service provided. Focus your efforts on finding the most qualified and dedicated agent for your needs.
Review Your Finances
Before listing your home, take time to thoroughly review your financial picture to set yourself up for success. This includes:
Getting Preapproved for a Mortgage
If you plan to purchase a new home, get preapproved for a mortgage. This shows sellers you are a serious buyer and can give you a competitive edge in making offers. Shop around with multiple lenders to get the best possible rate and terms.
Estimating Your Proceeds
Work with your real estate agent to estimate the anticipated sale price. Then subtract any remaining mortgage balance, real estate fees and closing costs to understand your expected proceeds. This will help you set a realistic budget for your next home.
Factor in any repairs or improvements you plan to make to maximize your home’s sale price. Also budget for expenses during the selling process like mortgage payments, utilities and unforeseen costs. Maintaining six months of housing expenses in savings is ideal.
Consulting a Tax Expert
Meet with a qualified tax professional to minimize taxes on your home sale. They can advise you on issues like capital gains tax exclusions, depreciation recapture and other tax implications.
Carefully evaluating your finances will prepare you to enter the spring 2024 market from a position of strength.
Make Necessary Repairs
Making necessary repairs to your home before listing it for sale in the spring of 2024 will ensure you get top dollar. Focus on fixes that provide the best return on investment without over-improving.
According to John Smith, a licensed contractor, “Replacing an older roof, updating the HVAC system, and remodeling an outdated kitchen are repairs that can significantly increase your home’s value in the eyes of buyers.”
Some of the key repairs to consider include:
- Roof – Replace any missing, cracked or curling shingles. Buyers will be hesitant if the roof looks worn.
- Plumbing – Fix any leaky faucets, pipes or shower heads. Update old fixtures if needed.
- Electrical – Ensure all lighting fixtures work and there are enough outlets in each room. Update wiring if needed.
- HVAC – Have your furnace/AC serviced and ducts cleaned. Replace if over 10 years old.
- Windows – Replace broken seals or panes. Consider energy efficient upgrades.
- Interior walls – Repair cracks, holes, and touch up paint.
Focusing your repair budget on these high ROI items will pay off when buyers evaluate your home this spring!
Improve Curb Appeal to Make a Great First Impression
Your home’s curb appeal includes all the exterior elements that a potential buyer sees when they first drive up to your home. Making a great first impression is critical, as many buyers will make snap judgments about your home’s interior based on the outward appearance.
Spring is the perfect time to improve your home’s curb appeal by focusing on essential areas like landscaping, exterior paint, lighting, and cleaning:
Refresh Your Landscaping
As winter thaws into spring, your yard and gardens may be looking a little drab. Spend time revitalizing your landscaping to create an inviting exterior space. Prune overgrown bushes and trees, edge the lawn neatly, add fresh mulch, and plant flowers and greenery that will bloom through spring. Keep the lawn mowed and tidy. Weed flower beds and shake out doormats.
Give Your Home a Fresh Coat of Exterior Paint
Over time, exterior paint fades and wears. Refresh the paint to give your home a clean, updated look. Stick to neutral, appealing colors that will attract buyers. Power wash vinyl siding before painting. Repair any cracks or holes, and replace rotten wood. Paint the front door and trim for a cohesive look.
Clean Up Outdoor Elements
Scrub the exterior of the house, sidewalks, driveway, garage doors, and outdoor furniture. Replace old welcome mats by the front and back doors. Wash windows, repair screens, and touch up window frames. Ensure gutters are clear of debris. Remove cobwebs. Buff outdoor light fixtures.
Enhance Curb Appeal Lighting
Proper lighting can make your home look warm and welcoming in the evening hours. Install new, matching exterior light fixtures by the front door, garage, and back patio. Clean existing light covers and replace bulbs. Add subtle landscape lighting along walkways. Put lamps with smart bulbs on outdoor tables to control settings.
With some DIY elbow grease or help from professionals, you can dramatically improve your home’s curb appeal. A beautiful exterior will help your home make a great first impression on potential buyers.
Declutter and Depersonalize to Showcase Your Home
A cluttered home will turn off potential buyers. Now is the time to clear out excess furniture, personal memorabilia, and anything else that distracts a buyer from seeing the true potential of the space.
Go through each room and remove any non-essential items. Donate or sell unwanted furniture and decor. Pack up knickknacks, books, extra blankets and pillows.
Take down all personal photos and family portraits. Remove magnets, notes, and papers from the refrigerator. Buyers want to imagine the home as their own, so seeing your personal effects can make that difficult.
Clean out closets and cabinets so they appear spacious. Get rid of out-of-season clothes and items you no longer need. Organize any remaining contents neatly.
Certain rooms warrant extra attention for decluttering:
Kitchen – Clear countertops completely. Store small appliances in cabinets. Organize pantry shelves and remove any food items past their expiration.
Bathrooms – Remove all toiletries, medications, accessories. Make sure cabinets and vanities are cleared out.
Garage & Basement – Discard or donate unnecessary tools, household items, storage tubs. Shelving should appear clean and open.
The decluttering process can be tedious, but it pays off by making your home feel more clean, spacious, and ready for its next owners. With fewer distractions, buyers can better concentrate on your home’s best assets.
Hire Professionals to Ready Your Home
As you prepare your house for the spring 2024 market, consider hiring professionals who specialize in getting homes ready to sell. Though it will require some investment, their services can help make an enormous difference when it comes to making top dollar on the sale.
Work with a Home Stager
A professional home stager understands how to make every room shine. They will look at your house through the discerning eyes of potential buyers and make recommendations to improve the presentation. Stagers have tricks to make spaces appear larger, arrange furnishings to maximize flow and appeal, incorporate stylish decor, and create an environment buyers can envision as their future home. Home staging can increase the value of a home by 5-10%, so their fee of $1,000-$3,000 on average can offer an impressive return on investment.
Hire a Photographer
Great photography is crucial to attracting buyers online. A professional real estate photographer has the right wide-angle lens and lighting equipment to make indoor spaces look bright and inviting. They know how to compose exterior shots to showcase a home’s curb appeal. Many real estate sites allow home sellers to upload dozens of high-res photos, so a photo shoot with a pro can give your listing a big leg up on the competition. Expect to invest $150-$300 for professional real estate photography.
Bring in Cleaning Help
Hardwood floors should shine, tile and grout should be spotless, windows and mirrors should gleam. Bringing in a professional cleaning service can take your home’s cleanliness from acceptable to impeccable. Some cleaners even offer staging services such as removing cobwebs, cleaning out old food from the fridge, and re-caulking sinks and tubs. For a one-time whole home deep clean, expect to pay $250-$700 depending on square footage.
Hiring pros to stage, photograph, and clean your home takes some of the work off your shoulders. With their help, you can ensure every room and listing photo looks its absolute best for shoppers browsing online and visiting in person. A worthy investment on the road to quickly selling for top dollar.
Price Your Home Competitively For a Spring 2024 House Sale
Pricing your home correctly is one of the most important factors in selling quickly and for top dollar. The best way to price competitively is to look at comparable properties that have recently sold in your area. Your real estate agent can provide up-to-date information on similar homes, square footage, location, upgrades and other details that impact value.
The general recommendation is to price your home slightly below the current market value. This creates more interest amongst buyers and often leads to multiple offers. Price too high, and your home risks sitting on the market for longer periods. This is especially true in 2024 where homebuyers are very price sensitive.
A competitive price reflects an understanding of current market conditions and recent sales data. It attracts more buyer traffic, increases your home’s visibility, and sets up the opportunity for offers above asking price. As the seller, you can then negotiate up towards the fair market value.
Work closely with your real estate agent to land on the optimal list price. Be prepared to make adjustments if there is low interest or no offers after the first 2-3 weeks. A competitive pricing strategy gives your listing the best possible chance to sell quickly and for top dollar in your local spring market.
Conclusion – Preparing for a Spring 2024 House Sale
Once you have taken the time to thoroughly prepare your home for sale this spring, you can rest assured knowing you have done everything within your power to get the best price. With a fair asking price set with your agent, excellent curb appeal, a clean and decluttered interior, necessary repairs addressed, and professional staging, your home will be in prime position for a quick and profitable spring 2024 sale.
As the warmer weather brings more buyers out looking for their dream homes, your preparatory work will pay off with more showings, offers, and hopefully a smooth closing process. Always keep the buyer’s perspective in mind and evaluate every change with a focus on showcasing your home in its best possible light.
It takes time, effort and often money to get a home fully ready to go on the market. But the investment will come back to you multiple times over when buyers are clamoring for your move-in-ready, picture perfect home this spring! With some preparation still left, and the main work done, you can look forward to a successful 2024 spring selling season.
Eric Bowlin has 15 years of experience in the real estate industry and is a real estate investor, author, speaker, real estate agent, and coach. He focuses on multifamily, house flipping. and wholesaling and has owned over 470 units of multifamily.
Eric spends his time with his family, growing his businesses, diversifying his income, and teaching others how to achieve financial independence through real estate.
You may have seen Eric on Forbes, Bigger Pockets, Trulia, WiseBread, TheStreet, Inc, The Texan, Dallas Morning News, dozens of podcasts, and many others.