Renovations, repainting, landscaping spark interest in Dunwoody home

Name: Cindi Boyt and her daughter, Mia, 15

The home: A three-bedroom, three-bath ranch home built in 1974.

Where: Dunwoody

Why she sold: To purchase a townhome. When Boyt purchased the home on nearly a half-acre seven years ago, her grandparents were living with them. When her grandparents passed away a few years ago, "we just didn't need the space and the yard and the upkeep of the whole place," said Boyt, an account executive for an insurance company.

Time on market: 85 days

Original price: $275,000

Sale price: $257,500

What it took: Before putting the cul-de-sac home on the market, Boyt finished the kitchen renovation and landscaped the front yard and back yard, including new sod. The galley-style kitchen was updated with IKEA cabinets and stainless steel appliances. She also painted inside and out, replacing the faded blue exterior with gray paint, white trim and a red front door. "It just looked 100 percent better once it was done. It really had the curb appeal we needed when it got painted," Boyt said.

Potential stumbling block: A couple of offers came in, but they were too low. Then she got an offer in early 2013 that was closer to the asking price, which had dropped to $269,900. Although Boyt would have loved more for the home, her agent, Collette McDonald with Re/Max Around Atlanta, advised her to negotiate with the buyer and helped her determine when it was time to accept their offer. “We wanted to be sure we didn’t let this person go and not get anybody else in there,” Boyt said. “You want to get the best price but you don’t want to ruin it by getting rid of someone that gives you a good price. I think everybody has in mind what they want, but you’ve just got to be flexible with that.”

When her house went under contract, Boyt was able to find a townhome built in the 1980s just 2.5 miles away from the home she sold and in her daughter’s same high school district. “We were able to close the day after I closed on that house,” she said.

Seller's hint: If choosing an agent, work with an agent who can put you in touch with professionals to help you get the home ready to show potential buyers. "I never would have found the contractor, painter on my own," Boyt said. "I trusted (that) the people that she was connected with would get the job done."