The market to buy a home is as hot as ever, but that doesn’t mean selling will come easy. Now that the summer is upon us, home owners must be conscious of certain areas that may have eluded them the rest of the year. After all, attention to detail can be the deciding factor whether an interested party turns into a buyer.

Here are three tips that every home owner should consider before inviting prospective buyers into their home:

Leave the Air Conditioner On

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One of the most common mistakes that home owners make is that they forget to set the air conditioner on during the day. If realtors are showing the listing during the daytime hours on a hot day and the air conditioning is not on, the prospective buyers could potentially be immediately turned off and exit the home without fully considering it. They'll prefer to leave and go look at another home.

My advice is that even if no one is home during the day, set the air conditioning at 70-75 degrees. You want the setting of your home to be comfortable and inviting to prospective buyers. If their first impression is sweltering heat, it’s an upward battle in convincing them to buy your home.

Some home owners ask whether they should make the investment into getting central air conditioning. Obviously, the lack of central air negatively impacts the experience during summer months and may be a turn off for some buyers, but that does not necessarily exclude everyone from considering your home.

Installing a central air unit depends largely on what type of home you have. If you already have ducts for your hot air and furnace, and the cost will only be about $4,000, you will get that money back on the sale price.  However, if you have an older home with baseboards and hot water steam heat, the cost could run upwards of $14,000 or more. It will be much harder to recover that investment on the bottom line.

Don’t Forget to Landscape

Summer months can bring out the best in your lawn, but it can also shine a negative light in certain areas if you don’t maintain your property.

Consider planting flowers or other types of shrubbery with vibrant colors to bring out the best features on your property. Be sure to mow and water your lawn regularly as a well-maintained property can have a positive effect on an open house.

If you have a pool, make sure that it is clean. The landscaping around the pool should be neat (no overgrown grass or weeds, etc.); you want to make it seem that you use it often, even if you don’t. Pools can be a nice selling point to a property and provide your home with an advantage over others. Make sure to leverage that in your favor.

Modernize Your Furniture and Decoration

Invest in a nice outdoor patio set and fire pit to give your home a more inviting feel. Your job is to sell the prospective buyer on a concept that they might think “this could be us.” The more attention to detail in these areas will help stimulate their imagination.

Scotch Plains and Fanwood are very family-oriented communities and many prospective home buyers will be interested in the outdoor features of the property. If they can visualize hosting their family and friends in the home, it is a big step in the right direction towards selling your home. Bringing attention to the selling points of your home such as the backyard will only improve your chances of selling quicker.