Twice a year, the Builders Association of the Twin Cities hosts the Parade of Homes, showcasing new homes and ideas from builders throughout the state. And even if you are not looking to build a new home, the Parade of Homes can be a great way to get your home prepped to sell during the spring market. Likewise, for those looking to buy a home that may need some work, the Parade of Homes can give you new ideas on utilizing space or making home improvements once you’ve bought your new home.
How to get ready to sell your home
Check out other houses! Spring market is already in high gear, so do your homework and tour a few parade homes to get ideas about staging. Even if you already have your listing agent chosen and you have a timeline in place for when your home will go on the market, it can help to also observe other potential home buyers during the Parade of Homes to see what types of features they gravitate towards in each home. Keep your eyes and ears open for comments, feedback and trends. A few ideas:
- Talk with others on the home tours–from the experts in the homes to those touring with you, you can gain perspective on the current neighborhoods, market and likes/dislikes of those touring each home
- Take notes on color trends, furniture layouts and they way the model homes are decorated. If you use a stager when you list your home (Roger Fazendin can help with that!) talk to him or her about what you saw in some of the new homes and how those ideas can come to life in your home as you work to put it on the market
- Check out the landscaping (this may apply to the fall Parade of Homes more so than the spring in Minnesota as sometimes it can be hard to see the lawns!) Grooming the outside of your home before selling is just as important as the inside. You can glean ideas from the Parade homes as well.
For the buyers
Even if you’re not looking to build or buy a brand new home, buyers can still gain valuable information from the Parade of Homes. For starters, touring a few of the homes can give you a quick sense of what you do and don’t like for your future home. Likewise, if you are looking at a lower budget, the Parade of Homes can give you some great ideas on what you could implement into a home that might not be 100% move-in ready (or that may have a few areas to repair). Additional tips:
- Think green. Many of the homes on the Parade qualify as “green path energy homes”. Talk to the professionals in each home and ask them what provisions have been made to qualify for that distinction. There may be things that you can do to the home you intend to purchase to save you money on utilities and be mindful of the environment.
- Image the outdoors. Depending on the season, you may get some great landscaping ideas from the Parade of Homes. Keep these in mind as you think of what you could implement once you make your new home purchase.
- Ask around. Have a project in mind for your new home? Looking to buy a “fixer-upper” but not entirely sure who to call when it comes time to start the project? Talk to the professionals and the builders in the Parade homes; they’ll have suggestions on who you can call to install your next built-in or help with a kitchen remodel after you’ve bought your new home.
The Parade of Homes is just one of the many ways you can do research when it comes to selling your home this spring. The current Parade of Homes is on until March 30, 2014 in Minnesota. And for those who dream big, the Parade of Homes is kicking off its first Artisan Home Tour on June 7, 2014.
So grab your pens, your notepads and some key questions to ask after checking in with your real estate agent and hit those homes! You never know what great ideas are waiting for you in order to get that house ready to list this spring!