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Preparing Your House for Sale in Pella, Iowa and Surrounding Areas

Updated: Mar 5

Selling a home in the charming locales of Pella, Oskaloosa, Knoxville, Des Moines, or Ottumwa in Iowa means understanding local market trends and buyer preferences. The key to a successful sale is preparation. Here are some tips to make your home stand out in these lovely Iowa communities.

1. Understand Your Market: Each area in Iowa has its unique appeal. Pella is known for its Dutch heritage and tulips and boasted an average sales price of $238 per square foot in the last 12 months, while Des Moines attracts those looking for a bustling city life and has a much larger variety of neighborhoods and homes to choose from. Tailor your preparation to what attracts buyers to your specific area.

2. Curb Appeal is King: First impressions matter. Enhance your home's exterior with well-maintained landscaping, a fresh coat of paint, and minor repairs. In Pella, for example, a home that reflects the town's Dutch architecture and charm could appeal to potential buyers but is also not a deal breaker. Keeping your colors to neutral tones of whites, browns and earthy green/blues are a safe way to freshen up your exterior. 

3. Declutter and Depersonalize: Create a welcoming, neutral space that potential buyers can envision themselves in. Remove personal items, excess furniture, clutter - and odors! Potential buyers may not love your pets as much as you do, taking time to make sure your home looks and smells clean will pay off when the home is shown to a potential buyer. Taking your pet without, while the home is being shown is also a good idea. These steps are crucial across all markets, whether it’s a quaint home in Oskaloosa or a trendy loft in Des Moines.

4. Make Necessary Repairs: Addressing small issues, like leaky faucets or chipped paint, can make a big difference. In older homes simple fixes like drywall repairs or performing the regular maintenance on HVAC systems and water heaters can be helpful and demonstrate the care of your home to buyers. We do more than help clients buy and sell, we manage over 350 rentals across Iowa - so we have a good list of repairmen should you need assistance with repairs!

5. Stage Your Home: Staging can highlight your home’s strengths and downplay its weaknesses. In Knoxville, a well-staged home that brings out the small-town charm can be particularly appealing. 

Photos by Lissy Early, staging by Emily Spain with Spain Design Company, both services are accessible through our PRES Listing Advantage contractor list.

6. Professional Photography: High-quality photos are a must, especially in online listings. They can make a significant difference in how your property is perceived. Part of our PRES Listing Advantage is access to our professional photographer for fantastic listing photos.

7. Price It Right: Work with a local real estate agent to set a competitive price. Pricing too high can deter potential buyers. Pricing too low could leave hard earned equity on the table. We offer a free market analysis and a projected savings calculator by using the PRES Listing Advantage. Request your free market analysis and see the calculator here.

8. Be Ready for Showings: Keep your home clean and ready for showings at all times. Flexibility and availability can be the key to a quick sale, especially in fast-moving markets like Des Moines and Pella!

Selling a home in these Iowa communities means showcasing not just a house but a lifestyle. Whether it's the cultural charm of Pella, the historic allure of Ottumwa, or the vibrant urban life of Des Moines, your preparation should aim to capture the essence of the area. With the right approach, you can turn the sale of your house into an opportunity for another family to find their dream home in the heart of Iowa.


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