My listing - honest opinions please

sunnnyJuly 9, 2009

Hi eveyone,

Our house went on the market last Thursday and we had 2 showings on Sunday but nothing since.

I'd like to ask for your opinions on the listing please. I have always disliked how the garage sticks out from the house so the realtor tried to minimize it in the first pic but I still think it's not a good photo. I took several this morning and am going to let hubbie see them and replace the first pic.

There is also a HUGE list of updates which she didnt include but asked the showing realtor to show the viewers. Is this standard? Personally, I think the updates should be on the listing but she also said it makes people call to ask more rather than all the info be there so they don't have to call her. Also, our home actually measures 1497 sf but the county shows us as 14something.. how can we say that there is actually a few more square feet than what's listed?

I also have extensive landscaping which is mentioned as a lush landscaping.. is that enough? Does it help to put the sizes of the bedrooms which are larger than the normal 11x11?? One is 14x9 and the Master is 14x16.

This was my first home and we've been here 18 years, the only house my children have ever known and it's very bitter-sweet to think of leaving so PLEASE be nice but honest. :)

Thank you for your help,


Here is a link that might be useful: My Listing

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This looks like a warm and livable home. I don't think the pic of the front of the home is good-it looks like you are trying to hide behind the landscaping. One thing I noticed were the bright brass light fixtures-they really date your house. I would either replace them or spray paint the metal to another color.

Also in the front picture, there appears to be a large shed in need of repair in the back yard. Is that so?

I would list the room sizes, since the pictures do not make them appear that large. They are very large for the size of the house. I agree with the realtor that all of the updates don't need to be on the listing. You can list them here and we can tell you if they would be important to know as buyers on the website.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2009 at 2:23PM
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Sunny, I think you have a very nice, "clean" home. Others might be able to help you looking at the listing from a buyers standpoint. I am looking at it from a realtors stand point and how I would advertise it to attract whatever the target market is.

Talking about paint and electric outlets doesnt really appeal to most buyers. Mentioning every update that has been done to the house in 18 years will probably bore most buyers to death. The realtor should supply a feature sheet at the home that buyers can pick up and look at if they are interested that lists ALL your updates.

I would say something like; very warm and welcoming home. Three oversized bedrooms, lots of updates, corner fireplace in livingroom, sliding glass door that leads out to a covered 10x20 patio overlooking a private backyard with lush landscaping. You can critique and add whatever features are important in your area.

In my area, hardwood floors are a big plus, it appears in your area, that would be the wrong thing. I have NO IDEA what exterior air conditioning is and where you would use that, but if its important where you are, then put it in there somewhere.

I agree the front of the house needs a new picture. You can't tell what style house it is, you can't even tell what it looks like. It just looks overgrown.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2009 at 2:40PM
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In your effort to hide the garage, you hid the garage. This makes the home look like it does not have a garage, which will lose buyers that must have a garage. If you look real good, it appears that a one car garage might be behind the shrubs.

take a photo that shows the 2 car garage and post it asap. You will lose some buyers that want a 2 car garage and they might quickly glance at the photos and move on.

The inside looks nice - except for the piano that stands out. I am sure every looker will comment on it...nothing you can do. It really isn't part of the home anyway, it just looks out of place.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2009 at 3:58PM
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Thank you for your ideas and help. I can't agree with you more about the first pic. The front of my home is really pretty and this just doesn't show it as itlooks from the street. I have people stop and say "I just love your house" so I need it to reflect that.
The structure which shows behind us is our neighbors house and with a b etter photo hopefully that will not show. In my zest to hide the garage I never thought of the problem that it would make it appear we don't have one so that makes it easier.
I alsowill e getting new lighting in the breakfast area dn over the piano. All other lighting has been updated so th is wil lmake it look nicer.
I LOVE LOVE LOVE the realtor text and will take new pics in the morning with the new lights and send it to my realtor. She is pretty open and will be accepting of my shared ideas.
We debated over what to do with the piano and my realtor suggested we put it in storage but it's nearly 100 years old and I decided against it and will just have to keep it. It's in an open area that is part of the living room and could be used as either office space or formal dining space.
Thank you so much for your ideas. I look forward to more.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2009 at 4:42PM
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I'm usually one of most critical people here when it comes to critiquing listing photos. I have to say, except for the front of the house, I thought your pictures were pretty darned good. The piano in the kitchen (you said living room? Looks like the kitchen to me) threw me, but other than that, no major issues (except the front of the house picture). If you are priced correctly, I don't see why you won't have showing.

How do Open Houses do in your area?

    Bookmark   July 9, 2009 at 6:56PM
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I think you have a really nice home.

The Living room does look a bit small with all that furniture in there. Is it possible for you to remove some of the bigger pieces? I think a really nice LR is hiding behind all that furniture. I think removing the entertainment center and putting the TV on a smaller table would give a world of room as well as removing the red chair from that far wall.

The only other thing is one of the bedroom pics is 'distracting' with all those pillows on the bed and then the dog blanket at the foot of it.

I agree about the piano. It is a bit out of place.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2009 at 7:14PM
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Hi Sunny,

With regard to the square footage of your house you would be wise to use the footage provided by the county in your listing. If you use your own measurements and the lower number comes up at any time after you accept an offer, that could negate the offer. Also, at closing you don't want the buyer finding out the lesser amount. I've seen that happen and the buyer backed out of the contract.

Good Luck!

    Bookmark   July 9, 2009 at 9:17PM
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Holy COW what an afternoon. As I was posting my last response we got a call for a showing (our 3rd in the 6 days it's been on the market) so my kidsi and I dashed out the door and about 45 minutes later we had an offer of 3,000 below asking price. She loved the house and wanted to close byt the end of the month. WE DON'T HAVE A PLACE TO LIVE YET!!! So, I'm calling my DH and we're figuring things out. She is even pre-approved... then backs out becasue of the type of septic system we have. Which is shat most people here have but anyway... the right person will come.
So thank you all again for the advice. My piano is in what is a formal dining space but off the kitchen and living area... so not much I can do about that.
I think I'll work on the TV thing. Hubbie and I talked about that and I guess we'll change the lighting and that. Then go from there!!!
THank you all again. I LOVE my house but my DH works nearly an hour away and we have horses which we pay to stable near-by and we're hoping to get about 5 acres and move closer to his work and keep our 'boys' with us once we move.
Everyone have a great night.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2009 at 11:48PM
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You have a lovely home. I think the front of the house picture needs to show the front better, though I appreciate that the realtor was trying to show the really nice big yard you have, and I don't disagree with doing that.

I love the HGTV shows on how to sell a house. I see two things that others mentioned above, that I feel they would suggest. First of all, you are making your living room seem smaller than it is with so many very large pieces of furniture. I would get rid of one of the overstuffed chairs, the wood chair, and the entertainment shelving. I would then rearrange the furniture so that it is a cozy conversation area around the fireplace and tv.

The other problem area is that you have no dining room. They would say that you need to show the buyers what the room really is and would suggest you store the piano and put a dining room set in there. The piano in the dining room also points out that the living room is too small to have room for a piano. I understand you do not want to store the piano. The chandelier does help to show that the room is really a dining room.

You have decluttered nicely, you have neutral colors, it is clean and fresh looking. So except for these two problems, I think the home shows well. Your yard is well landscaped and lush.

They usually set up the patio to sell it with a party setting on the patio table with tropical themed linens and tableware, hurricane candles and a bowl of fruit.

I also agree that the narrative is fine. When I saw mention of fans, I feared you have no AC, but I see you do.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2009 at 10:50PM
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I think your house is lovely!! I'm wondering if they can list the square footage as "almost 1500" square ft?

    Bookmark   July 11, 2009 at 7:58AM
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I think the piano may serve to identify your house among all the others people see in a day. I can hear people saying "the one with the piano". I think the rooms intended purpose is quite obvious. Most people don't have a piano that large, so the fact that it won't fit elsewhere shouldn't be a problem for them.

The lack of a kitchen picture raises questions, though. Is there a place to sit and eat in there?

    Bookmark   July 11, 2009 at 8:39AM
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Just list approx sq ft, BTV

    Bookmark   July 11, 2009 at 4:41PM
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open the shower curtains to show the tile--to prove it is in good shape more than anything and the color

you do have lovely backyard--very attractive--take closer photo of the porch/deck area that would include some of your plants

the piano throws me as well--and the photo of the kitchen taken at an angle is bad--
just show the kitchen--maybe from standing behind the table -- shooting into the refrigerator area
some people in your area might be interested in the garage space--is there room for workbench? or the utility room?

    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 12:25AM
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Sorry, Sunny - I got your listing mixed up with the other thread running concurrently on this forum. There is obviously a kitchen with a table.

Now the piano bothers me EVEN LESS. Two tables right next to each other would be even more strange to me. (My house has that, too, only with a wall between.)


    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 1:26PM
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