If you want to sell your house fast in Gainesville, complete these light renovations and market your home to property investors seeking student rentals. —-
If you want to sell your house fast in Gainesville, the odds are in your favor as homebuyers and property investors alike flock to this North Florida hub.
The U.S. Census Bureau reports that the city’s population increased 13.5% from 2010 to 2020, jumping from 124,354 to 141,085. With a limited housing inventory to meet the growing buyer demand, homes are selling quickly and for more money than ever. According to the Florida Realtors Market Report, the median sales price for a home in Alachua County was $280,000 in 2021 — up 13% from the previous year.
But don’t expect to sit back and let the market do the heavy lifting. You’ll need to put in some work to best leverage the market. For expert insight on how to pull off a fast sale, we interviewed top Gainesville real estate agent Craig Wilburn, who sells homes 66% faster than the average local agent. Follow these seven tips and watch your home fly off the market.
1. List in April to sell your house fast
If you want to sell your house fast in Gainesville, consider how buying trends may influence the speed of your sale. Our data reveals that the homes in Gainesville sell the fastest in July, 36 days faster than the annual average. Since it typically takes three months from list to close, consider listing your home in April to catch the peak buying season.
2. Partner with a top Gainesville real estate agent
If you want to sell your home fast, invest time in finding the best real estate agent for the job. Our data reveals that Gaineville’s top real estate agents sell homes in 54 days compared to the 134 days it takes the average agent.
“Things can go wrong during the selling process because there are a lot of moving parts that go into selling a house from start to finish. Finding a real estate agent with influence and experience in the real estate industry in Gainesville will go a long way in terms of steering certain situations and streamlining certain processes,” shares Wilburn.
Find the best real estate agent for your home sale with HomeLight. We’ll crunch agent transaction data like average days on market, list to sale price, and client reviews to match you with three top real estate agents.
From there, we recommend interviewing your candidates to choose the agent whose experience and professionalism you trust.
3. Boost curb appeal with a fresh coat of paint
Gainesville’s hot and humid climate can wreak havoc on your home’s exterior. If you’re looking for a fast sale, you’ll want to refresh your walls to boost curb appeal and make a great first impression with buyers.
Start by pressure washing the exterior to remove grime and debris. You can rent a pressure washer from home improvement stores like Lowes and Home Depot for around $30.
Next, hire professionals to paint your house’s exterior walls and trim. Our research indicates that exterior painting can provide up to a 51% return on investment. For example, if you invest $3,000 into painting the exterior of your home, you could expect to see the value of the home increase by $1,500.
Color-wise, your best bet is to choose a shade of gray to achieve a contemporary look. Michael Lee, office manager at top-rated local paint store Cors Paint, shares that the trending colors in Gainesville are:
4. Let fresh air in to kill ‘old house smell’
The humidity in Gainesville can often make houses smell musty — a major turn-off for buyers. When mold, bacteria, biofilm, and other biological growths decay, they emit mVOCs — the gases we identify as old house smell. Mold and other bacterial growths thrive in dark, damp areas, making many Gainesville homes smell musty.
For a fast sale, tackle that “old house smell” before you list your home with these tips:
Conduct a mold inspection ($300 to $400 for houses of 4,000 square feet or less, or $700 to $900 for larger homes).
If your mold issue is severe, hire a professional remediation service (cost anywhere from $500 to $6,000).
Replace your air filters with HEPA filters made of fine mesh to trap harmful particles such as mold, pet dander, pollen, dust mites, and smoke.
Use a dehumidifier to remove excess moisture from the air and help start the drying process. Place humidifiers in dark, dank corners of your home to keep the indoor humidity level below 55%.
Open the windows or run the air conditioning before showings and open houses.
Remove curtains from the windows to let light in and increase ventilation.
5. Enhance your backyard living space
Gainesville buyers love stylish, spacious backyards fit for entertaining and relaxing. Spruce up your outdoor space to inspire buyers to make an offer on your home.
Stage an outdoor living area with a patio furniture set anchored by a woven rug. Style the space with colorful throw pillows, lanterns, and potted flowers that thrive in Gainesville’s climate, like Lily of the Nile, Liriope “Royal Purple”, and Viburnum Odoratissimum.
6. Conduct a pre-listing inspection to complete repairs upfront
According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), home inspection issues accounted for 11% of delayed contracts and 9% of contract terminations in 2021. If you want to secure a fast sale, tackle home repairs upfront with a pre-listing home inspection. A pre-listing home inspection is the same as a standard home inspection except that the seller pays for it before listing their home on the market.
Buyers often use home inspection findings to negotiate for a lower sale price or repair credits. With a pre-listing home inspection, you beat the buyer to the punch by completing (or at least acknowledging) these repairs ahead of time. Bypassing the usual inspection negotiations (often lasting one to three days), you can get to closing faster.
Pre-listing home inspections for an average-sized residential property take just a few hours to complete and cost on average between $279 and $400.
7. Market your home to investors and students
Gainesville is home to 13 colleges, including five private universities, six public universities, and two community colleges. With a steady flow of student renters, the city attracts property investors looking to turn properties into low-maintenance rentals.
If you want to sell your house fast, market your listing to this buyer group with the following tips:
Upgrade your home with durable “student-proof” features like laminate flooring, which costs around $3.80 to $4.80 per square foot.
Include travel time to the closest colleges in your listing description.
Stage all legal bedrooms with beds (twin beds work fine) and desks.
If there are two levels, consider adding a kitchenette to the second level to create an in-law unit that the future buyer could rent to students.
8. Consider selling your home to a direct buyer for cash
If you don’t have the time or energy to follow the above tips, consider selling your house for cash to a direct buyer. Direct buyers like flippers, iBuyers, and local “we buy houses” operations will purchase your home “as-is” for cash, closing the sale in as few as 7 to 10 days. That means you can skip the repairs, prep work, and open houses, and go straight to receiving an offer.
In exchange for convenience and certainty, direct buyers charge service fees that often translate into you getting less money for your home than if you sold it on the market with help from a top real estate agent.
If you’re tempted to see what a direct buyer would offer for your home, check out HomeLight’s Simple Sale. We’ll provide you with an all-cash offer for your home and an estimate of what you could sell your home for with a top agent. Accept our cash offer, and we’ll help you sell your house in days.
Header Image Source: (Sean Pavone / ShutterStock)
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