Start by looking at your home through the eyes of your potential buyer. Ask yourself, if I was the buyer what do I want to see or not see? This will help you determine what needs to be cleaned, painted, repaired and tossed out. The goal is for your buyer to easily envision themselves living in your home and to make your home appear move in ready. Here are 9 areas you can think about and things you can do to get your home ready to sell.
1. Clean your home thoroughly, get rid of as much clutter as possible including extra or oversized furniture, items on the counter, knickknacks, exercise equipment; make each room look at big as possible.
2. Toss or change anything that makes your home look tired, like carpet (especially throw carpets) or paint, or even old furniture.
3. Get rid of all personal touches, family pictures, items on the refrigerator, religious items.
4. Stage your home to make it larger, brighter and more inviting by rearranging furniture so the “walkway” in each room is open, if there is an area that is unusual add furniture to give it purpose, add fresh flowers, make the bed with a fluffy comforter and extra pillows, clean off all counters including the bathrooms, avoid adding heaving scented candles or room fresheners.
5. Curb appeal or first impression at the street counts, add potted plants at the entrance, trim bushes, mow the lawn, rake the leaves, wash windows, paint window sills and possibly the front door.
6. Make the house as light as possible, ie, no heavy drapes, change to high wattage light bulbs, lighten up the paint color, open all the blinds and turn on all the lights for each showing.
7. Be prepared to remove or hide your animal bowls and bedding and toys, get rid of pet stains, remove pets during any showing.
8. Get a pest inspection, a buyer will often ask the seller to correct pest inspection items; try to fix these items in advance or know it can become a request for repair to be negotiated.
9. Fix anything broken, if a buyer sees items in need of repair they will look at the home more critically and start to discount the price.