Although the hot seller’s market still exists in most of the country, there has been a slight slowdown in the last quarter of 2021. That means that sellers must make sure that their homes show well and price accurately if they want to move quickly.
Myth or Reality: Are two-bedroom homes harder to sell?
It is a myth. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) releases an annual snapshot of real estate statistics which indicates the typical home “had three bedrooms and two bathrooms” configuration. This configuration appeals to the largest market segment, families with one or two kids at home. It’s important to remember there are other buyers other than just families.
Know your target market
To sell your house quickly, first, make sure that you know who your buyers are. Then, you need to make sure you appeal to them. Your main options are to highlight your home’s strengths — try to remember what made you buy your house and play that up. Also, you will want to work with a top agent who sells homes fast and for the highest price possible.
What kind of buyer is looking for a two-bedroom home?
Knowing your target buyers focuses your marketing and increases the likelihood of making a sale, especially on a two-bedroom home. Lord explains, “maybe it’s their first home, maybe they’re downsizing,” and a smaller space is perfect.
Here is a list of the type of buyers that will be most interested in a two-bedroom home:
- First-time buyers: 34% of homebuyers in 2021 were first-time home buyers. These buyers typically buy smaller, starter homes to start building equity. A two-bedroom dwelling may be a great option.
- Older residents or retirees looking to downsize: As children leave the nest, parents want to reduce. The reality is that two-bedroom homes do not cost as much to purchase nor as much to maintain. For older or retired buyers, a two-bedroom house is ideal.
- College students: If your home is close to a college campus, that bodes well. College students need housing when they are in school, and your two-bedroom home may be a better option than dorm life.
- Investment property buyers looking for rentals: These buyers look for rental properties in all types of configurations, including your two-bedroom property. If you have pressing moving plans, and selling your home the traditional way may not be feasible, take a look at HomeLight’s SimpleSale platform to receive an all-cash offer. It might be just what you need.
Staging is going to be a game-changer just to help [the home] look livable.
6 Tips to sell your two-bedroom home
Home staging shows a home in its best and brightest light and attracts more potential buyers. Lord explains, “staging is going to be a game-changer just to help [the home] look livable.” And what’s more, “it’ll appear larger,” her mother adds. In addition to attracting more buyers, correctly staging your home can increase your home’s value at resale by an average of $2,500. Home staging costs typically range $626 to $2,367. If you have the budget for it, a professional home stager may be a good investment.
However, if you are staging on a budget, there are plenty of low-cost updates you can undertake to make a significant impact.
1. Declutter your home
Part of the deep clean is that everything must go! Not really, but you would be shocked by the amount of stuff you don’t need. As you decide to declutter, keep these fundamentals in mind.
Imagine that you are the buyer. Lord says part of selling a home is “selling a lifestyle.” Part of selling that lifestyle includes helping buyers see themselves in the home. In other words, when a buyer looks in your home and sees piles of your stuff, they are not seeing the house and cannot imagine themselves as the homeowner.
When buyers see clutter and evidence of your life in the home, their default thought is that the house lacks storage. Storage is a massive concern for potential buyers, especially buyers interested in a two-bedroom home. When you clean up your home and declutter, it makes the house look neater with abundant storage.
Clutter doesn’t just mean loose papers, magazines, and universal remotes everywhere. Savvy buyers look around; this includes your kitchen countertops. To maximize space, tuck away your countertop denizens —coffee makers, knife blocks, and toasters. A minimalist countertop with little touches of hominess encourages your buyer to imagine that your kitchen could be their kitchen.
Closets can be dealmakers or breakers. A motivated buyer will open your closets, so make sure that they are organized and spacious. Neatly organized boxes and bins offer a sense of perspective. It might seem counterintuitive, but a well-organized closet makes a buyer more aware of the available storage space.
2. Make it look bigger
You won’t move out all your furniture to stage your home. However, you will need to rearrange your furniture to attract buyers. Think about it like this, as configured, you set up your home convenience, but you need to make your home into a model home for buyers to peruse, inspect, and imagine themselves as residents.
In the living room, move around your furniture for space to chat and walk. Your buyers will want to imagine themselves sitting down and talking without being on top of each other.
If you have a bedroom, take the time to stage it. You want to show the buyer that their California king bed will fit into the bedroom with room to spare for other furniture.
Another thing you can do to maximize your space is to place mirrors in your rooms. A well-placed, strategic mirror makes the room look bigger. The mirror works because of science! The reflective surface gives the illusion of depth as light and color bounce back across the room. A buyer’s eyes see the reflection, creating an optical illusion that makes them perceive a larger space.
3. Avoid shrinkage from decor, lighting and colors
Decor can be a killer in tiny homes. Poor lighting and color choices make an already smaller space seem to shrink.
Light-colored paint on walls makes rooms feel spacious. In addition, you can complement the light color walls with sheer drapes to let in natural light to enhance the space. To give the appearance of taller ceilings, you can hang your drapes or other window treatments higher. Finally, you should remove wall decorations as they make walls feel busy and rooms smaller.
4. Market your home’s strengths
You probably won’t entice someone looking for a larger home to choose a two-bedroom house, but it will snag an interested buyer who is close to purchasing. When working with buyers, Madiera-Gorden says that a nicely presented two-bedroom home entices buyers who “want to start building equity, live a little bit simpler, and looking to improve the property.”
Presentation is king when it comes to marketing your two-bedroom home. Make sure to highlight your home’s best features, especially if you live in a desirable location or you have a great outdoor space.
Buyers looking for a two-bedroom house are most likely first-time buyers or older buyers looking to downsize, and in this instance, playing up the location and other features of your home tip the scales in your favor.
When you market your house, make your home’s location strength apparent:
- include the name of your neighborhood
- discuss good schools or colleges and their rankings around your home
- highlight your proximity to healthcare, shopping, grocery stores
For first-time home buyers, the existence of outdoor space that they can call their own might be unique. If your home comes with a great outdoor space, beautify it with a bit of fresh mulch and spruce it up to help your potential buyer imagine weekend barbecues and get-togethers.
5. Spotlight lower cost of living
Two-bedroom homes come with many benefits, especially for buyers who want to reduce their cost of living. A smaller home means small utility bills, lower taxes, and a chance to live a simpler, minimalist lifestyle.
A smaller home has the reputation of being more “green” or eco-friendly because of reduced water and electricity requirements. You need to foreground these benefits in your marketing materials. Work closely with a top real estate agent to maximize your home’s marketing strategy.
6. Highlight low-price affordability, easier down payments
In general, a two-bedroom home will be less expensive than a more extensive three-bedroom home. The lower overall price of the house means that the down payment will be smaller too. A lower overall cost and a smaller down payment may strike just the right chord for a first-time buyer with fewer funds available to secure a down payment.
First-time buyers aren’t the only buyers interested in a good deal, though. The lower sticker price of a two-bedroom home entices people who are downsizing. Madiera-Gorden explains that older buyers “like the idea of the size of a condo and living minimally, but don’t love the idea of an HOA, so a two-bedroom house seems like a great option.”
With the average price of building a new home still hovering around $300,000, your two-bedroom home might be the right mix of space, location, and price to snare buyers looking for an affordable home.
The bottom line is that you have to make the cost and benefits of your two-bedroom home apparent to your targeted audience. You want to use phrases like “affordable” or “great deal” to foreground the advantages of your two-bedroom home.
Partner with a top real estate agent who knows the market
Selling your two-bedroom home does not have to be an arduous task. While the market is more prominent for three-bedroom residences, all is not doom and gloom! You can still sell your home, but it takes strategic marketing, great staging, and an awareness of your target buyer.
The best way to sell your home quickly and for the best price is to partner with a top real estate agent who knows your market inside and out. HomeLight has connected over a million buyers and sellers with top local real estate agents who understand your specific area and can make the type of marketing and staging decision to sell your two-bedroom home for the best price.
The bottom line for selling your two bedroom home
All in all, when you sell your two-bedroom home, your focus has to be on making the house feel perfect for your buyer. That means the home needs to feel big enough to accommodate your potential buyer’s lifestyle while accentuating the affordability and location perks your home has to offer.
Strategic staging and decluttering are crucial to accomplishing this goal. Lord says buyers wonder about two-bedroom homes, “Where do I put all my things? Where does my TV go? What type of couch can I fit in here? All of those questions.” This is why she believes staging is a game-changer to “have all those questions answered” visually.
Prospective buyers might be wary of the two-bedroom configuration, but those worries will evaporate if you have a nicely staged home with an open layout. You must make sure to set up your home to feel as spacious and airy as possible. Most of the time, this is through strategic staging and creative use of already existing space.
The best way to sell your house fits your needs and budget. Following these tips will make your home competitive as you decide to sell. If you do need some assistance, HomeLight is always available to you!
Header Image Source: (Dillon Kydd / Unsplash)