The Downside of Beautiful Decor...aka...What's Included?

The beautifully presented home...we all love it. It's so easy to picture ourselves living in it, living the lifestyle that we imagine goes along with it. And really, that's the intention when it's staged (you already know this because you read my post on the HGTV Effect right?) and some people even live like that all the time! Perfection is hard to maintain but there are some people who can pull it off...not me personally, lol, but kudos to those who can & do!

But wait! None of it is included? It's all an illusion? That gorgeous light fixture in the dining room...nope! The fantastic high-end appliances & the window coverings...nope, nope! Once you strip some of these features away, does the house still hold the same value? Well, that depends on what you're taking away AND who you're asking...

Everyone's perception of value is different, it's going to depend on individual circumstances & more often than not, the need to put out cold hard cash. I always tell my buyer clients that you can write anything you want into an offer, but should you?

I've had Sellers who were adamant about excluding the decorative mirrors they installed above the bathroom vanities in the home they were selling, but be equally adamant about the same type of mirrors being included in the home they wanted to purchase...clearly a bit of a disconnect!

I've also had Buyers who were incensed to find out that the curtains, rods & brackets were not included & that they would end up with the additional cost of buying their own...& trust me, they don't care if they belong to the's all dissatisfaction & dollar signs to them!

Neither one of these examples will diminish the actual value of the home, but take away too many of these "little things" and you really do start to tarnish the illusion...& in extreme cases, the value or "special'ness" of a home IS called into question.

A great example of when it will cost you money as a Seller is a home that I sold a few years ago. The Sellers were willing to negotiate on the appliances, but they weren't included in the purchase price. The reason why it's such a great example is that we had 2 offers, 1 excluding the appliances & 1 including the appliances (everything else was the same). The offer price of the one excluding the appliances was $10,000 dollars less than the other. The math's pretty simple on this one (and we're talking 10-year-old appliances!)

Back to the question, should you write anything you want in an offer? Again, it depends...are you the only offer on the table? Or are you competing against other offers?

Buyers have to give up so much these days to successfully purchase a home that sometimes it can feel like the illusion that drew them in in the first place (& then excluding many of the features of that illusion), is adding insult to injury. But the key to today's competitive market is JUST GET THE HOUSE....everything else can be added, as funds allow. You can't put your own stamp on a place that you don't own it, so that's what you need to focus on.

Consider asking about a "side" deal for items you really love, but Buyers, please don't torpedo your chances by asking for too much in the initial agreement.

And Sellers, you need to find that balance between creating the illusion & maintaining enough of it that you're not ruining it for your potential buyers with what can amount to a bait & switch.

Clear as mud, right? Just like this market, lol...

Have a fabulous day!

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