Open house in Cobb County brings out buyers

Name: Danielle Robinson

The home: A four-bedroom, two-and-a-half bath home built in 1996

Where: Marietta

Why she sold: Robinson had rented the home to the same people for five years after she got married and moved to Roswell. When her renters decided to buy a home, she decided the property values had bounced back enough for her to sell. "I thought, 'Well, the housing market is back. I'm not going to take such a loss if I sold it now,' " Robinson said. "Also, I was worried I wouldn't get good renters in there again." She worked with Jim Martell of Keller Williams Realty First Atlanta to sell the home.

Time on market: 9 days

Original price: $175,000

Sale price: $175,000

What it took

“We made a list of everything that might turn off a visitor,” said Robinson, who works in marketing for IBM. She replaced the carpet, refinished the hardwood floors, painted the interior, replaced the siding, caulked throughout and hired a cleaning service. The landscaping was refreshed with pine straw and mulch.

“We did little minor repairs, too,” she said. “We even just switched out the light bulbs so all light bulbs matched.”

As soon as it was listed, Martell planned an open house. More than 40 people showed up, and they received two offers the next day, Robinson said. One was an investor who came in a bit below asking price, and one was an individual offering asking price. They selected the individual buyer.

“We were pretty happy,” she said. “We felt like we did a good job with the house and people liked it so much that they were willing to give us our asking price.”

Potential stumbling block

The sale prices of other homes in the Cobb County neighborhood were below Robinson’s asking price, and some nearby homes didn’t have strong curb appeal.

“I thought that might hurt the value of my home,” she said.

In the end, her home stood out compared to the competition.

Also, the inspector identified a few items, including a cracked window and furnace repair. The buyers asked for a couple of repairs, and Robinson hired a handyman to go through the list.

Seller’s hint

Spend time making changes, even if they seem meticulous, to create a move-in ready property for buyers.