To get top-dollar, the to-do list may seem never ending, but here are the top priorities of things to do before you sell your home, according to realtors. Some of these things are quick and easy and some will take a bit of elbow grease, but all should pay off when buyers start touring your home.
Find a good agent. Unless you’re experienced with this sort of thing or an actual real estate agent by trade, doing a For Sale by Owner can oftentimes be more trouble than its worth. The sound advice realtors can offer and the amount of time a good agent will save you is undoubtedly worth the commission they will receive. Do your research to find out who knows your specific area and target market best and schedule meetings with a few to determine who is the best fit for you and your needs.
Declutter. Nobody wants to walk out of a home they are touring and feel like they can describe the homeowners’ lifestyle in detail. Start clearing out for the move by getting rid of unwanted toys, knickknacks and clothing. Clean off countertops, windowsills, and other visible areas but also don’t forget about closets, bathroom cabinets, drawers and more. The nosiness of a potential purchaser may shock you. If you need to rent a storage unit temporarily, do so. Just remember- less is more.
Depersonalize. After you’ve decluttered, it’s time to make it easy for a purchaser to envision themselves living in your home, instead of you living in your home. Family photos, personal items, unique artwork and furniture need to go. If you have brightly colored walls, consider painting them a light, neutral color. You’d be surprised at how much of a turnoff a color can be, even though it’s one of the easiest things to fix. Create as much of a blank canvas as you can so viewers can imagine themselves and their belongings in the space.
Examine your curb appeal. When’s the last time you drove by your house and really examined it like a stranger would? The exterior of your home is the first thing potential buyers will see and it’s imperative that it leaves them wanting more. Does your window trim need repainting or caulking? Maybe your driveway could use a good pressure washing. What about adding some brightly colored flowers in planters out front? While it doesn’t have to be perfect, it does need to be inviting enough for them to want to come inside.
Clean, clean, and clean some more. Nothing is off limits to the scrub. In addition to all the regular cleaning, baseboards, door trim, walls and cabinets should all be wiped down/touched up as needed. Make sure all lightbulbs are working and have backups ready to go in case one goes out. Have your carpets professionally shampooed. Clean off all fan blades and remove any cobwebs from corners and high ceilings. And, don’t forget to deep clean those bathrooms and the kitchen! Scrubbing grout may become your least favorite pastime. When you live in a space every day, it’s so easy to overlook small things that someone else could be deterred by.
Add a little green. It’s amazing how much a room can be refreshed by simply adding something living. Purchase some houseplants to add to bathrooms or unused corners. Before a showing, get some fresh flowers for your dining and breakfast tables. It makes the entire room look put together, and they smell good too!
Happy selling! And if you’re in the situation where you’ll be moving soon, check out ECCU for a mortgage pre-approval. It’s an easy process and we have specialists to help each step of the way.