5 First Steps In Preparing Your Home For Sale

First impressions have a major impact on potential buyers. It’s for this reason that a good realtor will walk through your home to suggest the proper repairs and upgrades to best compliment your home and sell it fast. With your realtor, you will imagine what a potential buyer will see when they approach your house and walk through each room. Your realtor will know what potential buyers in your neighborhood and price range are looking at and what will help you sell your unique home and play up its features. Here is a generic list that will help you get started.

1.) Night Lights

A lot of people aren’t aware that potential home buyers often drive by your house at night. If you don’t have adequate lighting to highlight your home’s features, invest in a new porch light and some ground lighting to highlight your walkway or features in your landscaping.

2.) Curb Appeal

Elevate your curb appeal by cleaning your yard, mowing and edging your lawn, and trimming any shrubs you have. Fix any first impressions that may catch buyer’s eyes such as cracks in concrete, weeds, broken porch posts, ugly doors, and any clutter that may be stored in front of your home. Also, if you have a mailbox, be sure it’s charming and that your doorbell works well and makes a pleasant, audible from the outside sound.

3.) Prep Inside

The first step to preparing your home for sale is to remove any unnecessary items from the home so they can imagine their own things in it. Less is more when it comes to furniture and decor. Leave the bare minimum for furniture to depict how large the space is, and then include decor only where you want features highlighted or the eye drawn. An expert tip is to remove all but 1/3 of your closet contents and get matching hangers. Be sure to replace or shampoo all carpets in the home. Apply special attention to staging the bathrooms with a fresh roll of toilet paper (V.I.P folded, over not under, and pointed down in the shape of a triangle), brand new hand soap, new guest towels, and a clean looking shower curtain. Dress beds with attractive, cohesive bed sets.

4.) Make All Small and Inexpensive Repairs

Buyers will look at all functioning items of the home and tally even the smallest repairs. Be sure to repair all leaking faucets, defective or squeaky doors, light bulbs and fans, freshly caulk bathtubs and showers if necessary, replace filters, inspect and clean the hot water heater, and make appliances as presentable as possible. You can even include a sheet of paper attached to appliances explaining their desirable features or share with potential buyers your average electric bills and other home expenses specific to your property.

5.) Appeal To Their Senses During Open Houses

Having all the lights on, blinds open, a candle lit and fresh cookies (preferably freshly baked for the scent) will appeal to buyer’s senses and make them feel at home already. Remove all pet belongings, including bowls and food. Empty trash cans & close toilet lids

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Home Staging on a Budget

Staging is an essential, and cost-effective, part of the home selling process. Staging your home to show off its qualities can only add to your final selling price. On average, people receive $2 in increased sale price for every $1 they put into staging a home.

When staging your home for sale, there are five golden rules to take into consideration as you work your way through each room of your house.

Five Golden Rules:

De-Personalised

The buyer needs to picture themselves in the house – not you. That wedding photo may mean the world to you, but the buyer it’s a distraction that prevents them from seeing a home for their family.

Maximise

Declutter and maximise the space in your home. Closets packed tight with all your clothes make a place like it lacks closet space. Consider temporarily storing the overflow offsite.

Sanitize

This golden rule is the easiest and cheapest way to stage your home – clean it. A sink full of dirty dishes is as unappealing to you as it would be to the buyer. It is well worth the elbow grease in cleaning floors, walls, baseboards, ceiling fans and windows.

Modernise

Unless your home has exceptional period built-ins, all home could benefit from some updating. If someone feels the house is dated, they will reflect that feeling in a lower offer. Consider a few simple changes like swapping out expensive fixtures for nickel or chrome.

Neutralise

Colour can make or break a buyer’s interest in your home. You may love that shocking red wall, but all the potential buyer sees is a great deal of painting in their future because of red clashes with their style. The picture is one of the most inexpensive ways to change a look of a home.

Bonus Tips

Closets

Clear closets of unnecessary clutter, and organise to maximise the amount of open storage space you are showing off to potential buyers. Use boxes stacked together to keep up and hide the clutter.

Use matching hangers for clothes – hooks are inexpensive so splurging on higher quality are inexpensive, so celebrating on higher quality hangers to replace free wire hangers from the dry cleaners will modernise your closets with visual impact and a more luxurious feel.

Bedrooms

A quick and inexpensive way to improve the appeal of your bedroom is to use gender-neutral colours when touching up paint jobs and re-accessorizing to have the broadest possible appeal. Colour coordinate where possible bedspreads, walls, curtains etc. should have a clear theme to their colours if possible.

Bathrooms

If walls are grimy, spray them using a standard spray bottle filled with a mixture of one part bleach and one part water, follow up with a fresh coat of paint.

Clear countertops of everything but the essential to make space look more open and more extensive.

Kitchen

Modernize your dated cabinets; they can be touched up for less than $200 with a coat of new wood stain and or even a good sanding a coat of paint. Replacing brass or wooden cabinet hardware with brushed silver or stainless steel is an effective way of updating dated cabinets as well.

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