Prepare Your Home For a Sale

Most of us don’t keep our homes in showroom condition. We tend to overlook piles of boxes in the garage, broken porch lights, and doors or windows that stick. It’s time to break out of that owner’s mindset and get your house in tiptop shape. The condition of your home will affect how quickly it sells and the price the buyer is willing to offer.

First impressions are the most important. Your real estate agent can help you take a fresh look at your home and suggest ways to stage it and make it more appealing to buyers.

A home with too much personality is harder to sell. Removing family photos, mementos and personalized decor will help buyers visualize the home as theirs.

Make minor repairs and replacements. Small defects, such as a leaky faucet, a torn screen or a worn doormat, can ruin the buyer’s first impression.

Clutter is a big no-no when showing your home to potential buyers. Make sure you have removed all knickknacks from your shelves and cleared all your bathroom and kitchen counters to make every area seem as spacious as possible.

Step 1. Preparing your home to sell – make it look great

Presentation is everything! Home buyers are attracted to clean, spacious and attractive houses. Your goal is to dazzle buyers. Brighten-up the house and remove all clutter from counter tops, tables and rooms. Scrub-down your house from top to bottom. Make it sparkle. Simple aesthetic improvements such as trimming trees, planting flowers, fixing squeaking steps, broken tiles, shampooing rugs and even re-painting a faded bedroom will greatly enhance the appeal of your house. Also, make sure your house smells good. That’s right, clean out the cat box and light mildly scented candles.

Invite a neighbor over to walk through your house like a buyer would. Get their opinion on how it “shows.” The stuffed donkey in the family room may have to go to your in-laws for a while.

Do necessary repairs
Walk through your home as a prospective buyer would. Check:
  • Flooring
  • Plumbing fixtures
  • Lighting fixtures
  • Heating and ventilation systems
  • Doors and windows
  • Interior paint
  • Exterior paint
  • Outdoor drainage systems
  • Driveway and walkway (for cracks)
  • Outdoor watering systems
  • Roof
Make minor improvements
Add small cosmetic touches that might help you sell the home. For example:
  • Spruce up the entryway to make it more inviting.
  • Plant flowers in the front yard to increase drive-by appeal.
  • Remove and store belongings that clutter up rooms.
  • Make other home improvements deemed essential.