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5 Things to do before you list

1. Organize and clean

Pare down clutter and pack up your least-used items, such as large blenders and other kitchen tools, out-of-season clothes, toys, and exercise equipment. Store items off-site or in boxes neatly arranged in the garage or basement. Clean the windows, carpets, walls, lighting fixtures, and baseboards to make the house shine.

2. Find your warranties

Gather up the warranties, guarantees, and user manuals for the furnace, washer and dryer, dishwasher, and any other items that will remain with the house.

3. Spruce up the curb appeal

Pretend you’re a buyer and stand outside of your home. As you approach the front door, what is your impression of the property? Do the lawn and bushes look neatly manicured? Is the address clearly visible? Are pretty flowers or plants framing the entrance? Is the walkway free from cracks and impediments?

4. Get replacement estimates

Do you have big-ticket items that are worn our or will need to be replaced soon, such your roof or carpeting? Get estimates on how much it would cost to replace them, even if you don’t plan to do it yourself. The figures will help buyers determine if they can afford the home, and will be handy when negotiations begin.


Be proactive by arranging for a pre-sale home inspection. An inspector will be able to give you a good indication of the trouble areas that will stand out to potential buyers, and you’ll be able to make repairs before open houses begin.


Detroit Lakes, Minn. (WDAY TV) - The housing market in our area has beaten the odds again. As many across the country try unsuccessfully to sell off first and second homes, those looking for a lake place are still forking over big bucks.

In the past year, Jack Chivers sold ten million dollar lake homes. Until last year, he had

only sold one. Sales haven't slowed down here and prices are actually going up. The average lake home will now cost you half a million dollars; many are much more.

Jack recently sold a two million dollar house on Detroit Lake. It was on the market for less than a month. Three buyers went into a bidding war to get the property. The most popular lakes in our area are Detroit Lake, Melissa, Cormorant, and Pelican. A place on Pelican will set you back about five thousand dollars a foot.

Jack says the lake housing market won't slow down anytime soon. He expects it will actually grow even more. He says the longer you wait to buy, the more it's going to cost you. Jack says many buyers are from the region, but some out of state residents have cabins and usually have ties to the area. ■

Client Experiences

« I am so delighted by the service you have provided me, and the prompt and professional manner in which those services were performed that I must write to express my thanks.

While wintering in Florida, I decided it was time to sell my lake home. Jack himself went directly to assess and value the home, and within a day or two photos were taken and I was well on my way to successful marketing. I wanted some renovations before listing, and depended solely upon Chivers Marketing/Staging Coordinator to handle the entire project on my behalf. I'm sure she had no idea the project facing her, but she was able to envision positive changes, move furniture, select and install flooring, do the staging, and finally send her cleaning crew to finish the project sparkling clean. Quite amazing as I arrived for the season and looked around for the first time to see how beautifully the outcome, and how nice to return after many months away to find a clean and refreshed home, and enhancements I doubt I could have thought of.

Chivers' marketing is well known to be the best around. Yes, indeed, it has produced many showings already and I am confident we will find the perfect buyer for my home very soon. The agents have been so thoughtful to advise me in advance of showings and to leave the home secure after those showings, then to stay in touch for follow up and review.

Thanks, Jack, for your professional and personal attention to the marketing and sale of my lake property, and to your staff for their courtesies and professionalism.»

Sandra R. Barbari


Jack Chivers Realty
Detroit Lakes, LLC

1110 Highway 59 South
Detroit Lakes, MN 56501

Office (218) 847-3112
Fax (218) 847-5242