Prepare Your Home for Sale
Your Goal: To Sell your house quickly and obtain the Best Possible Price.
Now that you’re going to sell your home, you’ll want to look at it differently. Look at is as a “house for sale” through a “buyer’s eyes.” That vantage point will help you package it to sell more quickly. You don’t have to spend a lot of time or money preparing your house for sale. You may be able to simply borrow or rent the “extras” like decorative houseplants or lawn furniture to make your home memorable and attractive to buyers. Consider hiring professionals to do cleaning or simple repair work if you don’t have the time to do it yourself. Having a clean and tidy home makes a good impression and it’s worth it in the long run to hire this done rather than neglect it.
As you start to prepare your house for market, begin with the outside of your home (the first impression as buyers drive up) and work your way inside. It is estimated that more than half of all houses are sold before the buyers even get out of their cars! Try standing in front of your home and checking its “curb appeal.” Be imaginative: how could you improve that very first impression?
Make a checklist and a “To-Do” list. The checklist should follow the five important steps outlined below. Even if you can’t get to every detail, the checklist will help you keep in mind the basic steps. Remember, you need to think like a buyer now and have a critical eye!
MAKE SURE IT’S CLEAN! Thoroughly cleaning your home makes it easy for buyers to explore and gives the impression that it has been well cared for. Scents are important; be sure every room smells as good as it looks. Give some extra attention to pet areas, nurseries, and bathrooms. Consider fresh paint or wallpaper. In addition, a one-time professional cleaning service can make your house look like new!
FIX THOSE PROBLEM AREAS! Taking care to repair your home where needed eliminates buyers’ objections before they arise. If it seems like something is too much trouble to fix, chances are buyers will feel the same way. Buyers will also tend to think repairs will cost more than they do, so doing them in advance may actually allow you to ask and receive more for your home.
GET RID OF THE CLUTTER! Simplifying your rooms makes them look larger and feel neater. Buyers might have difficulty imagining themselves in your house if it is filled to the brim with your belongings! Try removing or storing things you don’t need, with the goal of creating a roomy, comfortable feeling that will be inviting to prospective buyers. Remember, when in doubt, throw it out, sell it, or give it away!
KEEP THE DECOR NEUTRAL! Keeping things in neutral tones helps buyers imagine living in your home with their own things. Neutral paint, wallpaper, tile, carpeting and other décor create a home for any lifestyle. Eliminate distracting colors and accessories so buyers will have positive impressions regardless of their personal tastes.
CREATE AN ADVANTAGE FOR YOUR HOME. Doing something a little different makes the exterior and every room of your house special. Since your home obviously competes with many other houses on the market, you need to make it stand out and be memorable. Peruse magazines and catalogs for ideas. Start at the front door and go all the way to the basement. Use items like fresh flowers and fresh smells. “Curb appeal” is very important!
REMEMBER, When it’s “showtime,” this is it! Assign tasks to each member of your family each time your house is shown to make showing your home quick and easy. If you keep up daily, showing your home will be easier for you and your family. Don’t plan on staying when the Real Estate Agent arrives with prospective buyers Plan a fun activity (away from the house) during showings and let the Agent do their job!