Preparing Your House for Selling

To prepare your house for sale, view it from the "eyes of a buyer." Any time and money spent on
cleaning, repairing and removing clutter will maximize its appearance. This can help increase
your profits and hopefully result in a faster sale. Of course, there may be times when a house is
sold in “as-is” condition, with the price reflecting improvements needed.

Ways to Maximize "Curb Appeal"

  • Take a walk across the street and critically look at your house to determine where you can make improvements to get that “wow” curb appeal
  • Keep the grass cut and edged. Prune bushes and trees. Remove any dead shrubs, trees or piles of debris. Weed and maintain all planted areas.
  • Repaint the front door and trim. Paint any areas of the home that desperately call out for paint “paint me, paint me!!”! Install a new front door mat and perhaps a new wreath.
  • Move all garbage cans, extra building materials and gardening supplies, etc. that are in the yard into the garage/ shed or out of the front view.
  • Check gutters, downspouts and/or roof for dry rot and leaks.
  • Clean the patio, porch, or decks of all small items, such as small planters, flower pots, charcoal barbecues, toys, etc.
  • Sweep all walkways and steps. Repair or replace if necessary.
  • Check all screens and windows. Repair or replace if necessary.
  • Test all fences, gates, and latches. Repair or replace any weakened areas.
  • Clean the swimming pool, Jacuzzi, or hot tub.
  • Check external structures, patio cover, and sheds. Repair, repaint, or clean.
  • Use driveway cleaner to remove oil stains from the driveway or garage floor; if there are large depressions in the driveway – fill them – perhaps recoat the driveway.

Ways to Help the Buyers Mentally "Move In"

  • Replace any outdoor light bulbs that are not working.
  • Open the front door. If it squeaks, groans, or drags, fix it.
  • Review each room. Clean switch plate covers, trim, doors and frames of fingerprints, paint walls, clean windows, window coverings, and shampoo soiled carpets.
  • Rearrange or remove some furniture. Less furniture in the room makes the room appear larger.
  • Remove all unnecessary objects on the furniture throughout the house. Restrict decorative objects to groups of one, three, or five items.
  • Take down or rearrange certain pictures or objects on the walls. A gallery wall of family photos or large collections frequently distracts buyers and causes them to focus away from the house.
  • Clear all unnecessary appliances from the kitchen countertops.
  • Remove messages and photos from refrigerator fronts.
  • Clean the stove, stove hood and screen, microwave, and sinks.
  • Remove all extra items from tubs, shower stalls, commode tops, and countertops in the bathroom.
  • Group the most needed cosmetics, brushes, etc. neatly on one counter.
  • Coordinate bathroom towels to one or two colors only. Buy new towel and bath mats if necessary.
  • Keep toilet lids down.
  • Fix leaky plumbing.
  • Organize your closets and cupboards. Thin them out and keep them orderly.
  • Possibly hire a professional cleaner to make the house sparkle.

Ways to Help the Buyers Mentally "Move In"

  • Sweep the garage and keep it tidy.
  • Clean and tidy up the attic and the basement
  • Place all money, jewelry, and other valuables (including guns) in a secure, out-of sight location
  • Take all prescription medicine off of visible surfaces and put out of sight
  • Keep pets, pet food dishes, and litter boxes spotlessly clean, and keep the yard free of doggie
  • diamonds.
  • Check all light fixtures. Replace all burned out light bulbs.
  • Clean the fireplace and hearth.
  • Locate operating manuals for appliances. Have warranty information available.
  • Set the Dining Room table with dishes, silverware as if you are expecting company
  • Check the basement floor and paint if necessary
  • Remove spider webs inside and outside
  • Clean the windows and the front storm door
  • Place seasonal flowers by the entrance
  • Prepare your home as if you were hosting a large party where everything sparkles!
  • Consider hiring a stager
  • Ask me for help – I will gladly go through your home with you room by room and make
  • suggestions to help maximize the value you get for your home.

Ways to Make Your Showings More Effective

  • Place basket or dish on a table near the front door, or on the dining room table for agent business cards.
  • If you're selling during the winter and there is a pool and/or special landscaping leave photos on display to highlight those amenities. Show what your home looks like in season.
  • Place flyers on a table by the front door – your agent should prepare highlight sheets about your home to display for potential buyers to take during showings
  • Save all real estate business cards left at your home. Your real estate agent will follow up on all showings logged in on the eshowings Appointment Center.
  • If you are at home when a salesperson comes by with a buyer, always ask for a business card before allowing them into your home. After you have made proper identification, make yourself, any children, and any pets inconspicuous (go outside, take a walk, or run an errand).
  • Leave certain lights on during the day. During showings, turn on all lights and lamps. Leave window treatments open during showings. Have soft music on during showings. Make sure the house has a pleasant smell.
  • Make cookies or bake an apple pie to make the house smell inviting – Gives the buyers a warm homey feeling when they tour your house. I will do this for open houses with your permission.
  • The more you prepare your home to show its very best will pay off in attracting buyers. Listen to the old adage – You never get a second chance to make a first impression.
  • I recommend to continuously make improvements to the home during the time it is on the market –every positive action causes a positive reaction. We work as a team to get your home sold… Iwill come and take new photos and post them on line so we can attract that right buyer.