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If Your House Is a Mess, You Dont Have To Sell For Less

Don't be tempted by "We Buy Houses" or "Sell Your Ugly House in 9 days for Cash" ads.

These savvy real estate investors look for sellers under duress. They make the money you earned for holding your home. Investors only want to pay you up to seventy percent of the (low-end) market value. Many investors who studied late-night infomercial real estate scams want you to be their bank and carry the financing.

You do not need to be at the mercy of these scavengers. Selling your home is stressful enough without worrying about getting a fair offer.

As a real estate investor who looks for distressed houses with desperate sellers, I give you the following tips for getting fair market value for your home quickly.

For Sellers with No Money to Spend:

Start at the street and clean up the weeds
Remove dead plants and trim overgrown limbs
Plant brown spots with cuttings of ground cover from friends
Remove empty pots and containers or fill with cuttings
Wash the windows
Inside, take town tatty window coverings
Open window coverings, let the sunshine in
Air your home out
Pack up personal effects -- family photos, memorabilia, and piles of magazines
Get rid of excess furniture, especially pieces with holes
Hold a yard sale and use the money to buy flowers
After a thorough purging and cleaning, your shining home is ready to sell!

For Sellers with a Little Cash:

Spend your money wisely on improvements that make a difference in your net proceeds.

Freshen paint
Fix everything you possibly can
Use Design and Marketing Psychology to stage your home

You can sell your home, at a fair price, with a little planning and work, when you know how to fix it up for the buyer's emotions. Think about the reasons you selected your home. Was it to have a home of your home, or a move-up? Knowing your prospective buyer's motivation helps you highlight the special features that will attract the right buyer.

(c) Copyright 2004, Jeanette J. Fisher. All rights reserved.

Professor Jeanette Fisher, author of Doghouse to Dollhouse for Dollars, Joy to the Home, and other books teaches Real Estate Investing and Design Psychology. For more articles, tips, reports, newsletters, and sales flyer template, see

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