Ensure Your North Side Chicago Home Receives Maximum Exposure and Earns Top Dollar With These Seven Home Marketing Tips
There’s little question as to the quality of homes located in Chicago’s North Side. The market is full of high-end luxury properties that command top dollar when they hit the market. Of course, this leads to some heavy competition for buyers, whether it’s those looking for a new place to lay down roots or others who might be seeking an investment.
When it comes time to sell yours, your home must stand out to attract a buyer willing to pay top dollar for it.
So, how do you get your multimillion-dollar property to shine amid a sea of equally spectacular luxury homes? It takes more than a new coat of paint, but that’s certainly an excellent place to start.
Let’s explore seven tips on how to market your North Side Chicago home to ensure you receive maximum value from the sale.
1. Understand your ideal buyer
Before we examine the basics of marketing your luxury residence, it helps to understand the type of buyer you’re hoping to attract.
A key aspect of this process is realizing you’re not merely selling a home but a lifestyle. From Bucktown to Lincoln Park to the Gold Coast and The Magnificent Mile, there is a lot of variety in the North Side luxury housing market. Homes that stand out and are smartly marketed move quickly and often sell for above asking price. In many cases, these houses sell fast because they were targeted to just the right buyer.
It’s imperative that you identify a profile of the buyer for whom your home will appeal to the most. To do so, you need to take stock of your neighborhood. Is it centered around families? Conducive to an active lifestyle? Will it satisfy those seeking privacy or those wanting in the middle of the action? Is it close to commercial, financial, or cultural centers? Does it provide easy access to major transportation points?
Knowing your ideal buyer will focus your marketing efforts:
- Which improvements to make and how you should invest in them?
- What advertising avenues generate the most attention?
- How to present your home so it attracts motivated buyers?
Identifying the buyer you want to target also helps you craft a better picture of the lifestyle your home offers. Appeal to those who strive for that specific aesthetic and you will stand a greater chance of selling your home faster for more money.
2. Let an inspection be your guide
Your next task is preparing your home for sale. One of the principal components of successfully marketing your home is its appearance to prospective buyers.
While not always necessary, it may prove beneficial to have your own home inspection completed before listing the house for sale. You’ll uncover any shortcomings and essential repairs that, if left undetected, could jeopardize a sale.
The inspection also provides a game plan for what to address now and what’s best left to the negotiation phase of the home sale.
Beyond repairs, there are additional steps you can take to improve your home’s marketability. Below, we cover the most important physical elements for successfully marketing your home: painting, curb appeal, lighting, window treatments, and staging.
By far the simplest way to transform your home is by painting it. A fresh paint job brings a home to life. Not only does it cover up blemishes, but the right colors also infuse a home with vibrancy. It gives the space a feeling of newness that will turn even the drabbest room brilliant.
When deciding on a color scheme, opt for bright neutrals that lend an openness to the surroundings. This also makes it easier for potential buyers to envision the space as their own.
That said, it doesn’t have to be all grays, beiges, and taupes. It’s essential to make your luxury space feel livable, and adding splashes of color or unexpected elements throughout the home often do the trick. Examples include:
- Small accent walls painted a highly saturated color or featuring unique art or wall hangings
- Decorative accents, such as sculptures, art pieces, or unusual furnishings (like an art deco bar cart)
- Bold pieces of furniture to offset traditional furnishings (think a chaise lounge or club chairs)
- Whimsical touches, such as wallpapering a powder or utility room or adding a pedestal sink in the powder room
Spicing up your home with the perfect mix of a neutral color palette with dramatic accents can ignite the buyer’s imagination and inspire them to think about what they might do with the space.
4. Curb appeal
There’s no real secret when it comes to curb appeal. Cleanliness is vital. Unless your home’s exterior is completely dated, a simple power washing may be all it takes to breathe new life into the facade.
If the home is showing its age, consider an exterior paint job. Yes, it might be a slightly higher expense than what you want to take on, but it can significantly increase your home’s value. If you do, select fresh exterior colors. Again, neutrals are your best bet. You want the house to stand out within the neighborhood but in the right way.
As for the remainder of the exterior, it’s all about common sense. If there’s a lawn, mow it regularly and trim all shrubs or trees. Any outdoor spaces should be free of debris and punched up with bursts of color where possible. Potted plants are always a low-cost solution.
Don’t forget the backyard either. This level of luxury demands backyards that are stunning entertaining spaces, so make sure yours shines bright.
5. Lighting and window treatments
Having the proper atmosphere for your home is foremost in impressing would-be buyers. A lighting scheme that is a mix of floor and table lamps will create an ambiance that is welcoming and that accentuates the home’s best features.
Could your overhead lighting use a bit of updating? Investing in new fixtures can do just as much for your home’s style as a new coat of paint. Unless they are central to your home’s overall design scheme — antique lighting, for example — replace outdated fixtures with more stylish and modern designs.
Another way to improve your home’s lighting scheme is to emphasize natural light. Clean windows are a must. You also should take stock of your window treatments: curtains, blinds, shades, or shutters. Here are a few things to think about:
- Replace any heavy or dark drapery with lighter materials, both in color and weight
- If you have large showpiece windows, contemplate eliminating drapery altogether
- Replace old or damaged blinds with current styles, such as white, two-inch wood blinds
- When updating your exterior, don’t neglect shutters should your home have them; consider repainting them or, if damaged, removing them completely
- Replace worn or damaged screens
Light, both natural and artificial, improves your home’s overall aesthetics and can often mean the difference between a potential buyer liking and loving your house.
Once you’ve got your North Side home styled and updated, it’s ready to be staged. The rule of thumb here is that less is more. You want to show off the home’s versatility, while at the same time creating a space where a buyer can envision putting their own mark on the home.
Remove furniture that is cumbersome or crowds a particular area. Trade dark furnishings for brighter, neutral pieces. Having clear pathways will make your home welcoming and easy to navigate.
If your house is short a dedicated office space, stage a spare bedroom or den as one. Depending on the buyer, that extra room might work better as a fitness space or play area for children.
7. Solidify your home’s internet and word-of-mouth marketing
The first impression your home often makes to potential buyers is online. Those initial opinions are based on the pictures, words, and virtual tours posted to listing sites and forwarded through social media like Facebook and Pinterest.
To gain favorable attention, have your house professionally photographed, including that all-important virtual tour. Video tours often help present your home in an even better context than still photographs.
Don’t hesitate to lean on your professional realtor to produce the optimal level of exposure for your home. The luxury home market thrives on word of mouth, so find a realtor with an extensive network of contacts who can drive interest in your house far beyond traditional advertising.
Make sure you maintain your home during the listing process. Strong internet marketing and positive word of mouth are worthless if the product doesn’t match the hype. Keep the home clean and in excellent condition. Work closely with your realtor regularly to evaluate your marketing approach to ensure it keeps up with current market trends.
Of course, our emotional attachment to a house runs deep, even once we’re selling. Utilize your realtor to assist in making objective decisions about your marketing strategy. Welcome all advice with an open mind.
Interested in selling your North Side Chicago home? Or are you seeking information on luxury real estate in your favorite northern neighborhood? Whether you’re buying or selling, allow the Chicago realtor you can trust
, Tom Bakritzes, to be your guide to luxury real estate in the Windy City.