One of the first things to do before putting your house on the market is prepare your house for sale. You’ll want to show your house off in its best light to maximize your earning potential.
Get started by touring your house with the eye of a buyer – what works, what doesn’t work. Here are some things to keep in mind as you prepare your home to be listed with our flat fee MLS service.
1. Curb appeal
Does your house have curb appeal? Can you give it a little more pizazz to draw the buyer in? Would a bit of touch-up paint add dollars to the sale? What about the garden? Is the lawn in order and neatly edged? Are trees and bushes neatly pruned? Are flowers in bloom? If not, it may be time for a garden upgrade. Adding colorful annuals to the front garden will make a big difference. Remember, creating curb appeal will add dollars to your house’s final selling price.
2. Flowers for instant color
When selling, it’s the appearance from the street that will very often determine whether potential buyers come in to see the inside, or never get out of their cars. Flowers are one of the easiest and least expensive ways to make the front of your house look inviting and instantly increase the curb appeal of your home. Without any real landscaping at all, flowers can transform a rather drab and dreary looking front yard into one that looks colorful and lush. Especially during spring and summer, you should take advantage of the season by planting pots and flower boxes.
You should choose colorful flowers that will be in bloom during the time you’re selling your home. Planting the flowers in planter boxes and pots is easier than planting them in the ground and lets you more easily place them where they can have the most visual impact. You don’t need to have a green thumb, or spend a lot of money to get great results either. You can put together several very nice planter boxes and pots of flowers for well under $100. And it’s easy! One of the nice things about using flowers in this way is that you’ll see the results immediately. And so will buyers visiting your home!
3. Welcome home
Ask yourself, “Will this house say, ‘Welcome home’ to a buyer?” Looking through the eyes of a buyer, make changes that will enhance sales appeal. Eliminate anything that gives the appearance of clutter. Countertops should be free and clear. Knickknacks, souvenirs, family photos, refrigerator artwork – it’s gone. You need to “de-personalize” the house so buyers can imagine it as their home.Closets and cupboards should appear large and roomy. It’s time to make a donation to a local charity or store belongings at a friend’s or family member’s home.
Reviewing your own home room-by-room is critical. Pick out furniture that should be removed, rooms that need new paint, carpet that needs to be changed, fixtures that need polishing, windows that need cleaning, and any other improvement that can easily be made to promote the sale.
4. Setting the stage
Before the first buyer walks in your door, you’ll need to set the stage. You want to engage the buyer’s senses. Lighting is critical. Draw back curtains, open blinds, change light bulbs and add lighting where needed to welcome the buyer. Enhance the ambiance with music playing lightly in the background and insure a pleasing aroma emanates from every room.
Use this checklist to assist you in preparing the inside of your home:
- Remove all clutter from the house.
- Are countertops free and clear?
- Have you removed unnecessary furniture throughout the house?
- Remove the art gallery and coupon collection from the refrigerator.
- Check the bathrooms.
- Are the surfaces clean and clear?
- Are shower curtains and doors hung properly?
- Is the flooring clean and fresh?
- Are towels neatly hung?
- Check the walls.
- Is paint and wallpaper fresh and clean?
- Are the walls free from holes?
- Are there any colors or objects on the walls that need to be removed?
- Check the floors.
- Is the carpet clean and free from stains?
- Are hard surface floors clean and free from stains?
- Check windows and window coverings.
- Are all the windows clean?
- Are draperies and blinds clean?
- Are there any signs that this is a pet’s home? Make it neutral
- How’s the aroma?
- Try to air out the home prior to showings.
- Set the mood prior to showings.
- Open draperies and blinds.
- Turn on the radio to a classical music station, set the volume on low.