Why do some homes sell and others sit forever without a buyer?
While there is no exact answer, following this advice will definitely help you towards successfully selling your home in the least amount of time! AND enjoying your home in the meantime instead of just ‘letting it go’. Costa Rica is a great place to keep your house looking neat, fresh and sell-able while your Agent does their magic. There are several reasons for keeping your house in tip top shape, some of which will be more obvious that others.
The obvious reason for keeping your Listed Property for Sale in Costa Rica in tip top shape is to Impress the Buyers.
1- If you are always ready, an Agent can always show your property. Sometimes we get last minute clients, or a client changes their mind about what they are looking for, and we need to set up new showings in a short period of time. Don’t miss out!
2 – Keeping a home in good shape, and making sure it looks up to date (sometimes with little DIY touches) makes the Buyer concentrate on the home and what they like, instead of staring at cracks in the walls, or making a mental list of all the things they need to fix. Adding $$ signs until they walk out is exhausting, and they don’t even see the home, just the things they need to fix. Keeps buyers at ease by making sure everything is Perfect!
3 – Sometimes even the nicest houses take time to sell. Why is that? Brokerages like Blue Tierra talk with you about your price point versus the value in your home, and how to market it correctly for a successful sale. But even still, sometimes the nicest home with the best value, marketed in all the right circles can take up to 2+ years to sell. This is not the norm, but it can happen. Making sure your home is taken care of during this time gives your Agent confidence to tell a Buyer that it is in immaculate condition, despite its time on the market, and move-in ready. This is very important! All homes here do sell, just remember that!
The less obvious reason for keeping your home for sale in Costa Rica in fresh and tip top shape? For you!
Sometimes homes sit on the market for a while as we noted above. This is obviously discouraging. During this time, I have had Sellers purposely not fix things because they are selling anyway. This is exactly what you DON”T want to do! If there is a crack in the wall, or a light bulb out, or if the road needs to be paved. Do it!
1 – Whether you sell in 2 months, or 2 years – this is likely the home where you live. Keeping it nice, up to date, and looking great will keep you feeling better as well during the process. Enjoy the home while you live there, and it will show to your Buyers and actually help you sell quicker.
2 – When it comes time to sit down to a negotiation, you know your are turning over a great product, and will be more comfortable staying close to your asking price when you maintain the value in your home. And a buyer will see this too. A good Agent will help you price you home correctly for the value. Browse our Blog articles for price vs. value when Selling your home in Costa Rica.
That’s all well and Great, but HOW do I keep my home looking fresh and sell-able???
Get a Handy Man!
Feeling overwhelmed by all the ‘Maintenance’ on your to-do list? This is Costa Rica! The minimum wage is $3 an hour – kick back with a cold Pilsen and get a handy man to do it!
This is where a good Agent can come in handy, too. They will have a list of trusted helpers who can come within a month to go through your to-do list and get it done, as well as set up a schedule to keep things maintained. Whether its fixing the screens, painting the inside or outside, cleaning the gutters, re-digging the pavers that are out of place, fixing the bathroom tiles, or just keeping all the lightbulbs lit and the yard kept neat and clean, get the help you need.
Get a Professional Stager!
Not sure what needs to be done or just don’t want to make a to-do list? Are you out of the country? Blue Tierra Realty offers a valuable ‘Plus’ listing service that covers just about everything you need to sell your home. This includes a personal Senior Sales Agent to meet with you and go over market values and see your home, Professional Photography, plus many other marketing ideas that will help to sell your home. They also offer an Optional Professional Stager – someone who can come make the list of all that needs to be done to sell the home, work with the budget you give them, and set the stage for the professional photgraphs. It doesn’t matter how grand or simple the home is, these may just be all the things you need to set yourself apart from the competition and make someone want to come buy your home before someone else does!
According to Betsy Wilbur, a seasoned Agent and Stager of homes in the USA, homes that have been staged have 2 key benefits –
(1) for every $100 spent, there is a $400 return, and
(2) they statistically sell 87% faster than un-staged homes!!!!! (Forbes.com)
- So what are you waiting for? Your Agent and Stager will go through your home with a fine tooth comb and make a list of everything you need to do to put the most value into your home, to get the best asking price.
- He or she will help you find the right people to fix what needs to be fixed, and do what needs to be done. They will help you do this before they take the photos, so everything looks great! (you can click here to contact our office regarding professional staging of your home, or to meet one of our Agents in the Central Valley and Mountains if Costa Rica).
Fun DIY to Keep the home Fresh and Up to Date!
Another great thing about selling in Costa Rica! Fabric is cheap!
1 – Freshen up with New Fabric! There are fabric store ALL over Costa Rica. Cover all the pillows, make new curtains, and match the bed covers. More than likely your cleaning lady will know someone who can help you or simply make them herself.
2 – Garden! Viveros are a dime a dozen in this Country (that’s your local Greenhouse Nursery)- take a trip to any one of them! Or just go to your local farmers market and stack up! My home selling tips:
- Make a little medicinal garden bed, sectioned off with stones from around the house or along your road. For about $20 you can buy 5-10 medicinal plants and a bag of good black growing dirt. Just make a little map, or take photos of whats what. Buyers love this!
- Buy a few colorful plants to spice up the garden, the yard – anywhere you think needs a little tropical flavor! If its the rainy season, you can buy them for about 500 colones (less than a buck!). if its the dry season, buy them a little bigger so they are more noticeable since it will take them a little longer to root.
- Create a sitting area somewhere outside if there isn’t one already. This one is a little more money but a quick trip to most Viveros again will give you a selection of concrete benches. Paired with a pew paving stones, and some butterfly bushes under a tidy tree – perfect reason nook! And GREAT for your listing’s photo shoot!
- Have a big tree? Rig up an old fashioned rope swing! Great for grandparents to think of their grand kids coming to visit, or for families doing showings with their kids.
Need ideas? Check on Pinterest!
I have 2 channels that I am forever putting home tips and DIY tips into for Costa Rica – Paradise Management and Blue Tierra Realty. Both have great ideas no matter what tropical country you are living in, even though I specify ideas for Selling or Buying in San Ramon de Alajuela. From gardening, to DIY, to design tips – check them out!
So go shopping and have some fun setting up your House for Sale and keeping it ready! You can also sign up to get regular Selling Tips as we write them, or give us a call to have us help you sell your property. We focus on the Occidental area of Costa Rica (the western slopes of the Central Valley – San Ramon, Grecia, Atenas, Palmares and Atenas), but we list homes for sale all over Costa Rica on our growing MLSinCostaRica.com website. Good luck and Pura Vida!
MLSinCostaRica.com is also a full service Real Estate agency with a Rental Management division, a Business Development Division, as well as sales and rentals and construction. Real Estate, Construction and Investment – we aim to be all three, but most importantly,a new way to support you and find your lifestyle in Costa Rica.
Kim Rubens-Quirós has been writing for Costa Rican real estate blogs since 2013. She is an accredited International Realtor©, and owns and runs the longest standing RE company in San Ramon de Alajuela, the Blue Tierra Realty Group (formerly Paradise Management Realty). An expat from NYC, and married to a tico from central San Jose, Kim and David are raising their 3 kids on an ocean view mountaintop somewhere in San Ramon de Alajuela.
#How to Successfully Sell Your Home in Costa Rica