The Texas housing market is currently hotter than the state’s blazing summer sun, making now an ideal time to sell your Fort Worth home fast. The Dallas-Fort Worth area is experiencing a gold rush of sorts when it comes to real estate. In the spring of 2021, the three-month average for days on the market dropped from 102 days to 67 days — a new record.
According to top-selling Fort Worth real estate agent Sandy Finklestein, families and young professionals alike are racing to take advantage of the city’s relatively low living costs and laid-back lifestyle.
“There’s no state income tax in Texas. That’s a big bonus for a lot of people,” says Finklestein, who works with 85% more single-family homes than the average local agent.
If you want to get in on the action and sell your house fast in Fort Worth, you’ll need a comprehensive listing strategy. Texas buyers won’t swoon over great curb appeal and fresh interior paint alone. Given Fort Worth’s extreme weather, buyers tend to care about what’s “under the hood” just as much as aesthetic appeal.
Ahead, our guide to selling your Fort Worth home fast details how to showcase your property’s good bones so that your sale price doesn’t crumble.
1. Play up the ‘minimalist farmhouse’ aesthetic
In Fort Worth, there’s no need to pour your pre-listing budget into lavish decor and upscale design improvements. Nothing fits Texas homes better than a contemporary farmhouse motif with clean, minimalist styling.
Follow these staging tips to get the coveted Joanna Gaines’ look:
- Declutter shelves and surfaces, and stage a few larger accessories such as a glass bowl full of lemons in the kitchen and a rustic oversized clock above the sofa.
- Replace old brass lighting fixtures with black or bronze chandeliers and pendant lights.
- Remove curtains and valances to let light flood into the space.
- Paint your interior walls a crisp white like Snowfall White by Benjamin Moore to brighten the space and showcase strong architectural lines.
- Style sofas with black and white gingham pillows and a chunky knit throw.
2. Trim those sprawling oak trees
Top real estate agent Melanie Hunt shares that she commonly advises Fort Worth sellers to trim their trees before listing.
“We have a lot of live oak trees in Fort Worth, and they tend to drip to the ground, and you can’t see past them,” says Hunt, who boasts more than 40 years of experience.
Hire a professional to trim any large, droopy trees so buyers can admire your home’s beauty. This service costs around $370 to $500 on average in Fort Worth.
If your trees are significantly encroaching on your house, you should consider bringing in a home inspector for a full inspection. “However big the canopy of the tree is, the roots grow just as deep and wide underground,” explains Texas Star Home Inspector founder Jerry Summerlin. “They can grow into and cause damage to the plumbing, pipes, and foundation.”
For $200 to $350, an inspector runs a scope camera down into the pipes to find tree roots. If the roots are on the brink of damaging your property, you can take care of the issue before a buyer is involved to save time during the home inspection process.
3. Plant bright flowers in pots and lay fresh bark
Up next: Boost your curb appeal with light landscaping that balances beauty and practicality.
“Instead of trying to do heavy planting in the flowerbeds, put some fresh bark in and set out a really big pot of bright flowers,” Hunt suggests, who shares that this will help keep termites away from your home.
HomeLight’s data suggests that fresh mulch costs an average of $340 and recoups about 126% in value at resale. Local Thelin Recycling Company sells mulch in a wide variety of shades to suit your landscaping and exterior color palette.
When it comes to flowers, you can’t go wrong with heat-tolerant species like Cosmos, Marigolds, and Sage.
4. Give your roof a once-over
Since Fort Worth is prone to hail storms, buyers check for roof damage that may lead to costly repairs down the line.
“When you get homeowners insurance, the insurance company sends an adjuster to check the roof,” says Summerlin. Even if a home passes inspection, Summerlin has seen insurance companies require that the buyers update the roof for their coverage to kick in.
If you want to sell your house in Fort Worth fast, conduct a roof inspection (average cost $315) and take care of any needed repairs before you list your home. Keep records of the inspection and repair invoices to share with your prospective buyers.
5. Check the foundation
“A lot of people don’t know or realize that Dallas and the eight to 10 counties around it sit on what’s called expansive clay,” says Summerlin. “The soil dries out in these five-year droughts we have. The foundation can shift and crack.”
As the seasons cycle through extreme droughts and periods of heavy rainfall, the dirt either holds on to moisture and swells up (known as expansion), or dries up into a chalky dust pile (known as settlement). Needless to say, radically fluctuating earth is not the most supportive surface for holding up a home’s weight.
“In about 50% of the houses that I walk into, you’ll see cracks in the walls,” says Finklestein. Wall cracks are a sure sign that the ground below, and therefore the foundation, has moved.
Check your home’s foundation and walls for cracks and signs of settlement or heaving. If your foundation issues are severe, you’ll need to disclose the problem to buyers and modify your listing price to reflect the repair costs to keep your home sale on the fast track.
6. Sweat the AC units
In a hot desert climate like Texas, air conditioning is critical to a homebuyer’s decision. If your unit is on the fritz, it’s going to come up in the inspection. This issue could delay the home sale if the buyer negotiates for you to fix the unit or offer seller credits to pay for repair. Worst case scenario, a buyer could even back out of the sale with their earnest money intact.
“HVAC systems average life span is 12 to 15 years old, and I’ve seen lots of homes be sold at the 15-year-mark,” says Summerlin. “But at the 16-, 18- or 20-year mark, you’ll definitely want to consider an upgrade.”
The national average for a new HVAC system is $376, but prices could reach $1,998 on the higher end. Consult your real estate agent to determine if an HVAC replacement is worth the cost to speed up your sale.
7. Partner with a top Fort Worth real estate agent
If you want to sell your Fort Worth home fast, you need to partner with a seasoned real estate agent. But don’t just work with any agent — HomeLight’s data reveals that the top 3% of agents in Fort Worth sell homes for as much as 85.5% faster than their peers. Those same agents win their sellers up to $42,000 more than the competition.
To find top real estate agents near you, share your property details with HomeLight. Our Agent Finder crunches transaction data to match you with the three best Fort Worth real estate agents to sell your home. From there, we recommend that you interview your candidates and choose the agent whose experience and personality feel like the best fit for your sale.
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