An entrepreneur and marketing expert who sold more than one billion dollars worth of property during the pandemic has revealed his top tips for how to sell your house for the most money.
If you’re looking to sell, this is potentially a great time to do so, after house prices reached an all-time high amid the pandemic, leaving many buyers forced to pay above asking price – but as a seller, how do you ensure you get the most bang for your buck?
Kris Lindahl, 38, from Blaine, Minnesota, knows a thing or two about real estate, having first started working in property in 2009 – and now has over 12 years’ experience in the business.
Kris runs his own company, Kris Lindahl Real Estate, employing 350 people, which has tripled in size in just two years – with the entrepreneur reaching one billion in sales in 2020.
Top tips: Real estate expert Kris Lindahl, from Minnesota, sold more than $1 billion worth of property during the pandemic, and he is now sharing advice for other sellers
The company covers residential properties and commercial real estate in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Colorado.
‘There is no one way to sell a house, it’s different every time but there are absolutely some things you can do to make it more attractive to potential buyers,’ Kris, who also has a staging company, told Jam Press.
‘You should be prepared to get your hands a little dirty.
‘Lots of shows on TV will make it look like it’s just adding some flowers and writing a figure down on a bit of paper to close a deal but there is a lot of emotion involved.
‘We’re seeing more people staying in their properties for longer and changing the use of it to enjoy it more.
‘Like, as children come and go or people get older there’ll be extensions added and such.
We’ve seen trampoline floors, hot tubs added to a balcony, multiple bedrooms converted into one huge space.
‘Especially in the last year when the meaning of home means more today than it ever did before. This is your shelter’.’
From making sure the home smells good to setting the scene and tackling online viewings, Kris has revealed his top tips for how to get the most out of your sale.
Aesthetics are everything: Even if you are planning to sell your home virtually, setting the scene is incredibly important, Kris warned
SET THE (VIRTUAL) SCENE
Make sure your home is presented properly to entice the most buyers to view it.
Kris said: ‘The way people sell a home and the way they live are two very different things. When we live in a home it isn’t “show ready”.
‘And selling and buying in 2021 has completely changed; for instance, the very first viewing will now likely be online.
‘People are looking at the photos, taking virtual tours and then deciding if they want to actually view the house.
‘It’s super critical that you get the online shelf space looking right, and consider the space and colors really thoroughly.
‘We have our own staging company that helps us create the perfect interior – but if you can’t afford to dress your house just for the sale, there are still lots of things you can do to make it look completely different.
‘Staging is as much about removing stuff as it is dressing a place. Declutter anything on shelves and surfaces to make it look more spacious.
‘Clean the front door and if you have a front garden, tidy it.
‘First impressions really count in this business.’
SECURE THE RIGHT AGENT
There is nothing worse as a buyer, seller or renter than dealing with an agent who doesn’t care about your time and money, or doesn’t know what they’re talking about.
Helping hand: Kris says that it is essential to secure a talented and passional real estate agent to help you with your sale
Kris said: ‘The key to selling right now is working with a professional who has access to other homes so they know what’s coming up and how to compare yours to others’.
‘An agent should know all the details of your property and be able to answer any question thrown at them – even if it’s about the local area, like how easy it is to get planning permission.
‘They should be able to provide all the information about the history of the property, broadband speed, local schools and amenities – perhaps even be able to recommend a restaurant or bar.
‘A good agent will not only offer a great tour but get people excited about the house, make them want to live there and even have them imagining themselves there.
‘Try and read reviews from previous sellers about how the company worked and if you’re really keen, try and find out what it’s like to work for them.
‘People who are passionate and care about their jobs because they’re treated well are more likely to give better service.’
Welcome: The real estate expert said that open houses are still the best way to sell a home, even amid the pandemic, noting that there are many safe ways to host potential buyers
CONSIDER AN OPEN HOUSE
With COVID-19 still very much an issue, a traditional open house may not be an option at the moment – but there are lots of ways around it.
Kris, who offers training programs and scholarships for those wanting to get in the industry, said: ‘If you’re in a rush to sell your property, then an open house is a great way to get it seen by a lot of potential buyers all in the same day.
‘Having it on a Saturday and Sunday will give everyone busy at work during the week a chance to see it.
‘Also, make sure you have a sign outside advertising the date and time so that people walking or driving know all the details.
‘Due to the current risks it wouldn’t be safe to have more than six people from three different households in the house but that could be two couples and the agent.
‘The house can still be open and allow people in, they might just have to wait.
‘A little bit of organization is all it takes to make it work. Don’t forget to sanitize surfaces between visits though.’
SMELL IS EVERYTHING
In the movies, estate agents always have bread baking in the oven or cookies cooling nearby to give a delicious aroma to the home and help it sell.
Sweet: Another key element for any home sale is curating the perfect fragrance, with Kris explaining that you need to find something subtle that won’t offend viewers
This is actually a real thing – however, it doesn’t necessarily have to be baked goods.
While there isn’t one scent that fits all and will guarantee a sale, Kris says a ‘clean’ smell will always be well-received.
He said: ‘There is nothing worse than going into a property and it stinks of smoke, pets or garbage.
‘It sounds so simple but make sure you clean up thoroughly before a viewing.
‘Put on fresh sheets, open the windows, light some subtle candles. You don’t want an overpowering smell anywhere – whether it’s good or bad.
‘You might love the scent of vanilla but it might give other people a headache.
‘And thoroughly vacuum to get rid of any stray pet hair that could cause someone’s allergies to be triggered.
‘It doesn’t matter how amazing somewhere is, if it stinks or has them sneezing that’s all they’ll remember afterwards.’
WHAT’S THE NEXT BIG THING
Sharing his thoughts on what will become the next big thing in property, Kris added: ‘I think now, as we transition out of the pandemic-era, people are going to be looking for more house, more land and more sustainable avenues in order to stay longer.
‘Lots of people ask about solar panels on roofs, they want space to garden and live more economically and to be able to adapt.
‘Multi-generational homes with grandparents living with their children and so on.
‘Having everyone under one roof but having the space to do it.’
So, if your home offers any of the above, make those features shine in the ad.
It just might be the deciding factor to get a prospective buyer to sign on the dotted line.