There are several keys to a satisfying home buying experience in Woodstock, the Hudson Valley and the Catskills. This includes appearance, condition and location. The current owner also needs to meet the needs and expectations of would-be buyers, so it's a good idea for sellers to pay attention to what buyers are looking for. Here are some of the top points:

A House That Appears to Be in Good Condition

The emphasis on appearance is intentional - a house that looks great will fetch more buyers and more money than one that doesn't. This is true even if close examination of the important structural elements, such as the roof and plumbing, reveals that they are in the same condition in as other homes. When people see peeling paint, a dirty exterior and broken-down shutters, they assume that the rest of the house is falling apart. Sellers should always make sure that the obvious things are in good shape and the home has “curb appeal.”

Actual Home Condition

Good looks help get home buyers to check out a house, but overall structural condition comes into play when it's time to move beyond the first-look stage. Owners thinking of home selling in Woodstock and the surrounding areas should be sure to fix problems like roof leaks, bad plumbing, electrical issues and other structural elements. For example, if there is a buried oil tank, it must be removed or remediated by a certified professional. This will help ensure that the seller isn't limited to "fixer-upper" pricing or costly seller concessions once these defects come to light.

Home buyers need to know what to look for so that they can spot at least some problems during an initial walkthrough without hiring a professional inspector. Look for damp spots on sheetrock, exposed electrical wiring, mold and other obvious issues. If you’re still interested in that “dream” country home, have a licensed home inspector take a closer look for you.


The condition of the surrounding houses is important to the overall perceived value of the house being sold, as is the location. Buyers should consider neighborhood property values and condition if the goal is to resell the home at a later date. Sellers, alas, can't do much about this aspect since they can’t control what their neighbors do. They can, however, put up fences or plant tall shrubs to at least ensure that the view from inside the house is a nice one.

These are just some of the things that homebuyers look for when seeking a new home in the Catskills and Hudson Valley. Home sellers should make sure to spruce up their home so that their offering will fit the needs of today’s discerning homebuyers.

Lisa Halter
Principal Broker/Owner
Halter Associates Realty