I have been selling houses for over 20 years !! I practically grew up in a real estate company. Over the years, I have heard a lot of advice on how to prepare your home for the real estate market. I’m sure some of you have heard a lot too. I’m going to give ONLY my best tips and try to include some that you may not have heard yet.
The first thing you should know is that when you sell your house and you also live in it, it is NOT convenient. If you are a serious seller and want the best price for your home, there must be some tradeoffs. Your dishes can no longer be stacked in the sink, your dirty clothes need to get to the basket, the bed needs to be made daily before you go, and your pets may have to spend a little time in cages, dog runners, and the garage in order. to allow people to see your home more easily.
· The appeal to the sidewalk is important.
o Dead lawns, overgrown shrubs, dry spots, and generally unkempt landscaping make a bad first impression. There are cheap arrangements for shipyards that need help. Adding sprinklers, grass, and hard surfaces can be expensive. Re-seeding, mulching flower beds, and getting rid of unsightly or overgrown plants can work wonders.
o Also, be honest about the exterior paint and the condition of your home. Peeling and chipping paint, dry rot, roof problems, and poor paint jobs make the buyer feel like the investment is already too great and they haven’t even seen the inside of the home.
o Remove all trash from the front of the house. The benches, flower pots, and knickknacks you love may seem like clutter to some shoppers. Less is more!
· Pre-pack, tidy up and clean your house!
o Buyers are uncomfortable seeing a busy house as is, when there is clutter, trinkets, photographs, statues, awards, appliances, beauty products, kitchen supplies, food, and paperwork that they feel are intruding on you. Buyers also tend to equate their cleaning skills with their home maintenance habits. It will detract from the value they find in your home.
o Excess furniture and possessions make your home feel smaller. Remove unnecessary furniture and store it in the garage. If your table only needs 6 chairs, remove the other 2. If you have 3 layers in a small living room, consider moving one to the garage.
o Pack as much as you can. This includes any clothing that you are not wearing that may be lying around or in your closets.
o Clean your showers, sinks and countertops. Clean your floors, baseboards, windows, appliances, shelves, and window frames. Clean, Clean, Clean !!
· Make your house smell good!
o I find that many people have no idea that their house has an odor. Just yesterday I went into a house that smelled bad of cat. Ask an honest friend “how does my house smell to you?” Deodorize carpets, relocate pet areas, don’t smoke in the house, and watch out for smelly foods before shoppers arrive. Place accessories in all rooms. Shoppers should be greeted with a wonderful fragrance that tells them that your home is cozy and clean.
· Confine your pets.
o I am an animal lover and I have 5 pets !! So … I understand all the cat and dog people who love Fido and Fluffy and don’t want to see them stressed out. However … Buyers fear their animals and fear that they may accidentally let their pet out. Also, some buyers will have young children who are not used to animals or may have severe allergies. Be sure to make arrangements for your pets that are convenient for all agents showing your home. Vacuum frequently. Keep cat boxes and dog treat-free yards clean.
· Neutralize your home.
I have a wonderful burgundy wall in my living room; This is the first thing I would have to paint if I were to sell my house. Burgundy is far from a neutral color and some people will hate my wall. When economically possible, paint your home in neutral colors (Navajo white and plain white, by the way, are not considered “trendy”). If you can’t afford to paint every room, do your best to neutralize the main areas, such as the living room, family room, and kitchen, or areas the buyer will see for the first time upon entering. First impressions last. Also, if you have a room that is particularly bold, consider painting at least that area. Black, burgundy, red walls, bright colors are definitely not to everyone’s liking.