Remember last month when I said, "even though we haven't had a spate of over-100 days, it's still plenty hot"?

Well, those were the good old days, weren't they?

August has baked north Texas with more than a few days witnessing heat indexes soaring into the mid 110s. That's why I chose the picture above from mad paperie to open this issue of Harmonious Home Adventures. If you're going to be outside, a pool is the only sane place.

Let's just try to ignore the heat and trust that fall will soon be here. After all, the kids are back in school, so the weather should change any day now, right?

Here's another from mad paperie to get you into the back-to-school mood:
This month's issue came about because I often find that people want to get their homes ready for sale and then call me about listing it.

While I appreciate their motivation and efforts, that's a bit backward.

Call your realtor (that's to say: me) before you get your house ready to sell. Find out why below.

I really look forward to working with you or your referrals on any kind of real estate adventure - selling, buying, or breathing new life into tired space.

Thanks for reading!

p.s. - please share Harmonious Home Adventures with friends and family (everyone deserves to love where they live!). Just hit the "forward" button on your email. They can sign up here:
When should you call your realtor (me, that is)?

I'm pretty safe in saying that your home isn't ready to be put on the market. Preparing a house to sell usually requires significant effort. When should that begin?

As far in advance of the target date for selling as possible.

Sometimes, life intervenes and dictates changes according to schedules of its choosing, rather than ours. Think something like an unexpected job opportunity that requires relocating quickly.
In those circumstances, you have little choice. Your house has to go on the market fast and you don’t have time to make a lot of changes to get it ready to sell.

Barring those exceptional circumstances, however, you should reduce the stress of the situation and maximize your home's market potential by allowing as much time for the prep work as possible.

But where do you start? Exactly what steps should you take before your house goes on the market?

Step one: Call me. As soon as you make the decision to sell.
(Want a guide to actually moving your stuff? You can find that HERE.)
Preparing property for sale
Your goal, of course, is to sell your home. A “successful” sale, however, is not just a matter of the highest potential price. Days on the market is an important factor.

You know that a property has hit the “sweet spot” when it sells quickly after going on the market for at or near (or a bit above) asking price.
More often than not, hitting that sweet spot with your home will require you to spend some money getting the house ready to sell. My experience with staging and design can help make sure that those prep dollars are wisely spent.
If you’ve been a reader of Harmonious Home Adventures, you’ll recognize that we’ve discussed many of these points before, even as far back as the second issue, which you can find HERE.
It’s easy to say that you need to de-clutter, maximize flow, and freshen the décor. But there's a difference in saying and doing.

Becoming involved early on allows me to put my experience to work, helping you see through a prospective buyer’s eyes. Also, since a sale is a process of presentation and negotiation, I can identify which changes are important at which stage of the process.
It may not be necessary or even advisable to make some of the minor repairs; the best strategy for the sale may be to wait and negotiate them after inspection. (Remember the HHA issue about inspectors and inspections? You can find it HERE.)   
Maybe you’ll get the most beneficial effect by hanging new drapes, rather than repainting a particular room. It could be that adding a floor lamp or a large plant is just what that corner needs, instead of or in addition to a chair.
The point is, preparing a house for sale is different than preparing the home for living. Things that you, as an occupant, might think are important may not be so high on a buyer's list. My training and experience enables me to recognize the difference.
Market comparisons
Not only that but, when your house is up for sale, potential buyers don’t simply consider it as a discrete piece of property, judged only on its own merit. They evaluate it in comparison to every other home for sale in the same (or comparable) neighborhood.

So, the decisions about what steps to take in getting your home ready to sell have to take into account how it stacks up against the competition.
And that’s something a good realtor knows. Being familiar with the market – not just what you can find on the Internet, but going to broker’s open houses and previewing properties – is part of my job.

Launching your new adventure
Giving your realtor time before your home goes on the market to evaluate your house and how it fits into the relevant market will pay off, not only in terms of the bottom line at closing, but also in making the sales process as a whole smoother and days on the market fewer.

So, as soon as you decide that it’s time to begin that new adventure in loving where you live, call me. Let’s make the plan together!
Photo by Trey Freeze

Debra’s experience in home renovation, staging, styling, and redesign sets her apart from the crowd in the Fort Worth area real estate market.

  • Creativity to re-imagine existing spaces for broader appeal.
  • Vision to see opportunities where others see problems.
  • Insight to know what buyers are looking for.

Debra doesn't just listen - she empathizes.
She matches buyers to spaces.

Debra doesn’t just sell property - she maximizes potential.
She helps her clients find harmony in their lives.

You can - and should - love where you live!
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