To sell your Herndon house for the best price in the shortest amount of time is a goal that can be
advanced by a particular kind of homeowner flexibility. It’s a trait somewhat out of phase with other attributes that generally belong to people who succeed in owning their own Herndon home.
Okay—admittedly, you can’t really characterize all Herndon homeowners except in the vaguest of
terms. But many do fall into the same categories that describe successful people of all stripes. More than the average, they are self-reliant. They draw satisfaction from pride of ownership. As a rule, they are often are more individualistic—and somewhat more independent-minded—than most people.
Here’s the rub. These characteristics aren’t necessarily useful when it comes time to sell your
house. It runs counter to one of the guiding principles for success in real estate showings and open houses—namely, the art of disappearing.
No matter how attractive or impressive personal or family mementos, trophies, souvenirs, or
keepsakes might be, if they suggest the owner’s personality, they should be packed off for revival when the coast is cleared. CNBC’s real estate commentator Diana Olick once put it succinctly: sellers should “clean up, clean out and put away” [most personal items]. The fact is, valuable artifacts can be off-putting, even if it’s understood that they won’t be staying. Likewise, knickknacks that “add personality.”
Personal personality is the no-no. The rule of thumb is that if a potential buyer gets a clear feel for the homeowner’s personality, that means she or he will have a harder time seeing themselves contentedly occupying the space. When visitors can picture the home as their own, they are much more likely to start thinking, “our sofa goes there” and “this would be Billy’s room”—thoughts that are encouraging first steps toward what winds up prompting an enthusiastic offer.
In short, disappearing acts are true magic when you set out to sell your house. I’d add another trick
for setting the stage—give me a call at 202-409-7513. Contact us for a free market ready consult at www.LeAnneandCo.com.
This holiday season finds Herndon’s streets and stores humming with as much activity as has been seen for some time—which brings us to a particularly upbeat year’s end. Whether it’s Christmas,
Hanukkah or Kwanzaa that’s spelled out in overhead banners, this is the one time of year when the
commercial activity that marks all the big holidays is accompanied by a special spiritual overlay.
The hustle and bustle that’s led up to this week may have kept most of Herndon’s parents,
grandparents and everybody else busy collecting gifts and preparing for the gatherings we reinvent
annually, but it’s nearly impossible not to also call to mind some of the indescribable wonder from
That must have been in mind when, nearly a century ago, then-President Calvin Coolidge opened
his holiday season message to the American people with,
“Christmas is not a time or a season but a state of mind.”
“Silent Cal” nailed it in just those few words; he was famous for that! Today in Herndon we call it a
mindset—and that’s probably why this time of year it’s permissible to share such high-minded thoughts without fear of being judged overly sanctimonious.
Taking full advantage of that license, here is one author’s incisive counter to the season’s
excessively materialistic trappings:
Christmas gift suggestions:
“To your enemy, forgiveness.
To an opponent, tolerance.
To a friend, your heart.
To a customer, service.
To all, charity.
To every child, a good example.
To yourself, respect.”
— Oren Arnold
In the same spirit, I wish you all the beauty, all the blessings—and especially all the joy the season
can bring! If you are considering a move in the future, please contact us at 202-409-7513 or LeAnne@LeAnneandCo.com. Visit our website at www.LeAnneandCo.com to search for your dream home.
For local homeowners whose Herndon homes will be up for sale in 2018, there’s bound to be some consternation regarding how much time, effort, and budget need be directed to the project. In addition to formulating a timetable for extra maintenance in areas where signs of undue wear and tear stand out, there’s the question of whether more ambitious projects are called for. Often, a fresh coat of paint or some deep steam cleaning can make a real difference in how well Herndon homes for sale show, but those are the easy calls.
More challenging are the gray areas—places where it’s possible that more major and costly improvements could result in a quicker sale, higher offer—or both. They are gray because no crystal ball (or Tarot card deck or Ouija board) exists that can guarantee that the extra expense and effort will reap a commensurate return.
One information source is the studies which reveal “costs-recouped” statistics for various home improvement categories. These average cost figures shouldn’t be taken too seriously since they are national averages, and Herndon costs can differ significantly. But they do indicate the relative scope of the projects named. More meaningful for decision-making are the percentages of expenses recouped in each category. When preparing Herndon homes for sale, to answer the question of which, if any, improvements will return their investments, here are some highlights from the National Association of Realtors®’ 2017 survey of results from midrange homes for sale:
Attic Insulation (fiberglass): $1,343 -- 107.7% recouped
Deck Addition (wood): $10,707 -- 65.2%
Minor Kitchen Remodel: ($20,830) -- 80.2%
Major Kitchen Remodel: ($62,158) -- 65.3%
Window Replacement: ($15,282) -- 73.9%
Garage Door Replacement: ($3,300) -- 85%
Entry Door Replacement: (3,276) -- 77.8%
Roofing Replacement: ($20,664) -- 68.8%
Master Suite Addition: ($119,533) -- 64.8%
Zeroing in on the minimum outlay to achieve maximum return will, of course, differ for each Herndon home for sale—but the NAR’s findings indicate how hard it is to recoup most expenditures. If I’m tapped to be your Herndon Realtor®, I’ll be able to serve as a useful source of advice in this department. Knowing what has recently led to success for other Herndon homes for sale allows me to share some practical insights. I hope you’ll decide to give me a call!
Call us today for a FREE Market Ready Consultation! No charge and no obligation! We know what it takes to get your home ready and SOLD! 202-409-7513 or LeAnne@LeAnneandCo.com.
If you are a well-organized prospective Herndon house buyer, you have been weighing many factors as you prepare to start serious house hunting. One of the factors to consider is seasonal: that is, which of the five seasons is most favorable for buying a house?
It’s a fact that the most heavily favored among the seasonal choices is the traditional “peak selling season,” Spring-into-summer is the traditional busiest period for Herndon residential activity—and logic dictates that there must be persuasive reasons why so many Herndon house buyers opt to make their offers then. But persuasive counter-arguments also abound—both for selling and buying a house. Briefly, here are the most common leading reasons for choosing one season over another for buying a house:
Winter: least competition with fellow buyers, hence fewer prospects for a bidding war
Spring: traditional popularity brings the widest selection of new listings
Summer: most convenient time for travel and concentrated house hunting
Fall: most motivated sellers: highest volume of new asking price reductions
There they are—each of the seasons along with frequently cited reasons why they tend to foster the best buying opportunities. Since you have probably noted that I promised to discuss five rather than just four seasons, here’s that extra one (it’s my choice):
Your season: that is, the season when your financial preparations are complete, your professional and family schedules coincide to allow ample house hunting time, and it also feels like the time is right to get going to find your new Herndon house.
This fifth season is the one that holds the greatest prospects for buying the Herndon house you’ll be excited to call your own. The calendar provides good alternative reasons for choosing any of the traditional seasons, yet the perfect “house of your dreams” might crop up or disappear in any one of them. Your season will always be the best time to get serious about house hunting—and with any luck, that’s when you’ll land a terrific home.
P.S. That’s also the season when I’ll be standing by to supply maximum effort for the enterprise!
It was right there in the entirely respectable Architectural Digest’s site: an article championing late-night stalking. Happily, it wasn’t the kind of stalking that winds up in a courtroom. The non-crime being confessed to on AD was writer Isabel Galupo’s “addiction” to late night stalking…through the real estate listings.
The author admits to not being at all ready to actually buy a house. She is terrified by the prospect of permanent roots and doesn’t even really understand how a mortgage works. Thus, her nightly browsing is strictly recreational. She can’t resist fantasizing about spacious Spanish colonials in Santa Barbara or quaint little cottages with bay views in Bar Harbor.
For some reason, it’s irresistible.
It probably won’t be surprising if Galupo’s confessional rings true for many a similarly addicted Herndon listing reader. I’m even sort of guilty, myself (though centering on Herndon listings, of course). Fortunately, I have the convenient cover of being professionally motivated. Since I develop the language for some and have reason to visit the others, I can invoke the same excuse film directors have for slipping out to a midweek movie matinee: “Don’t disturb me, please—I’m working!”
But I have to think that there really is something almost universal about being drawn to the Herndon listings. They certainly do attract a goodly proportion of visitors who aren’t going to buy anytime soon—or even contemplate house hunting at all. Residential listings and their virtual tours are just plain fun to gawk at, even apart from Listing Stalker Galupo’s “fantasizing about what it would be like” to live in one.
The participants in this popular pastime might best be labeled “virtual looky-loos”—but unlike their real-world counterparts, they don’t waste homeowners’ time. It’s really a harmless sport—even one with the remote possibility of turning any given hobbyist into an actual prospect. From time to time, carefully-crafted listings do make that happen!
When it’s your turn to put your home on the market, I hope you will give me a call. I’ll make sure your property’s listing draws rave reviews from all comers—most especially, the ones who will write you an offer!
If you are considering a home sale in Herndon or a home purchase in Northern Virginia, we can help! Check out our website at www.LeAnneandCo.com. We are your Herndon expert real estate team! 202-409-7513 LeAnne Anies
Mom. Mother-in-law. Chef's Wife. Navy Chief's Wife. Realtor. Christian. Connector. Empty Nester. Business Woman. Foodie.