Preparing Your Home

As a seller, you need to understand that purchasing a home is an emotional process for the buyer.  A potential buyer is much more likely to purchase a well-priced home that feels right rather than a bargain home that doesn't show well.  There's nothing more important than making a great first impression on potential buyers.  Below is a list of tips to help you prepare your home so that it makes a great first impression.  Also, be sure to read our blog post about why staging your home is critical.  Remember, a home that shows well is a home that sells well! 

Enhance the Curb Appeal

The outside of your house is the first thing a buyers will see, so you want to make sure it is tidy, fresh, and welcoming. Here’s what you can do to help enhance your home’s curb appeal:

  • Have your trees trimmed
  • Keep garage doors closed
  • Clean the gutters
  • Store toys and gardening equipment somewhere other than the front yard
  • Turn on exterior lights at night and consider accent lighting if your house is in a higher-traffic area
  • Cut back overgrowth (especially in front of windows)
  • Keep the grass well-watered and mowed (strongly consider hiring a professional lawn service)
  • Keep leaves out of the yard and off of the porch
  • Remove mold and mildew on the siding, roof, sidewalks and driveway
  • Pressure wash dirty driveways, decks, and patios
  • Depending on what you can afford, repaint the entire front of house, front door and trim
  • Check steps, walkways, walls and patios for cracks and crumbling
  • Add some seasonal potted flowers or plants to your front steps or porch

Clean and De-Clutter the Interior

It is hard for someone to purchase a home if they can’t actually see it. Buyers will feel much better about a home that looks spacious and clean. Here are some tips that are vitally important to a successful sale:

  • De-Clutter, De-Clutter, De-Clutter! If you don’t need it and it doesn’t add any aesthetic appeal to the home, put it in storage or donate it – remember, you’re moving, so you’ll have to start packing at some point, you ought to start now
  • If you have too much furniture, rent a storage unit and put the excess there
  • Keep floors of closets clean and free of boxes and don’t overfill closets with hanging clothes
  • Take down personal photos that can be distracting to buyers
  • Hire a professional cleaning service to give your house a good scrub and onsider having them return once a week to keep your house sparkling while your home is on the market
  • Have carpets professionally cleaned (or replace them if necessary)
  • Keep kitchen countertops clear and free of clutter
  • Do not leave dirty dishes in the sink or dish drainer
  • Clean ash out of wood-burning fireplaces

Follow Your Nose

Some people have a very keen sense of smell and if your house has bad odors, then you have a problem in need of a solution. Follow these guidelines to help fix problem areas:

  • If you have a pet, bathe it
  • If you smoke, stop smoking in your house and consider purchasing an air purifier or ionizer and look at repainting the entire interior
  • If you have a cat, clean the cat litter box daily
  • Do not burn scented candles odor is one of the strongest memory triggers and a smell you love may cause a buyer to be emotionally turned off to your home
  • Refrain from cooking fish or other strong smelling foods
  • Consider dry cleaning your drapes if they are adding an odor to the home
  • Add fresh flowers to different rooms in your house

Budget Yourself

When preparing for these repairs, try to spend as little money as possible.  Buyers will be impressed by a brand new roof, but it's unlikely you will earn back what you spent to put the roof on the house.  Make sure you understand the difference between minor polishes/repairs and major renovations. Contact us for further advice on what you should do to prepare your house to sell.

Consider Professional Staging

Professional Home Staging has become a booming business because it works.  You’ve probably watched enough HGTV to realize that it truly does make a difference.  If you’re selling an empty house, staging it is imperative, but even when your home is furnished, having a stager come in for a consultation or go a step further and bring in some furniture, art, etc., can make all the difference in the world.  Contact us for names of stagers we recommend.