You’re ready to sell your house. Perhaps you’ve already put an offer in on your next dream home or moving away from the area, and feel like now is the time. You’re all set. But…is your house ready to sell? Here are a few tips to help you get your house prepped to increase your odds of selling your house at the price you want, fast.
Tips for Getting Your House Ready to Sell
First Impressions are Everything –
Imagine you’re seeing your home for the first time. You’ve driven up to the curb, and what do you see? Unkempt yard? Chipped paint? Broken outdoor lighting? Put yourself in the shoes of a potential buyer, and decide what may need sprucing up around the outside of the house. There are cost-effective ways to up your home’s curb appeal without spending a lot of money. Make a Curb Appeal Checklist, and attend to these details:
- Lawn – Mowed and cared for, including edging.
- Flower Beds – weeded, and put down some fresh barkdust
- Shrubs and hedges – trim and groom.
- Plant flowers – take a look at our guide to native West Virginia plants
- Power wash – fencing, walkways and other hardscapes may need to get the mold and winter goo blasted off. If you have weeds or crab grass growing out of any cracks, make sure you clean those out, too.
- Lighting – new lightbulbs, clean fixtures, and consider pathway lighting if your areas of you home have dark spots.
- Gutters – clear out the gutters, and make sure your downspouts are in good working order. If your house is shown on a rainy day, skipping that step could backfire on you!
- Touch-up painting – If there are chips on places like your shutters, window sills, etc. grabbing some touch-up paint and taking care of those details is important for first impressions. One spot you’ll want to make sure is in tip-top shape? Your front door.
- New house numbers (If necessary) – If the numbers on your house are fading or otherwise not looking that great, replacing them is a small investment. Help potential buyers find your house.
- Front door – Clean, paint, and hang a wreath or other decoration on or near your front door. This is the part of your house that really sends a message to buyers.
- Welcome mat – A new mat with a decoration or “Welcome” written on it gives your front porch an inviting feel and helps makes a good first impression. Buy a few potted plants to really spruce it up.
Clean and organize
I get it – who has time to dust on the top of your crown molding? If you want your house to sell quickly, you have to make the time. Your home should be visitor-ready for the duration of the time you have it listed. Here are a few areas you may not think of, but a potential buyer will:
- Wash your windows – This is an easy do-it-yourself, and it makes a big difference. Sparkling clean windows sends the message that the house is well-cared for.
- Eliminate any funky odors – This is particularly important if you are a smoker. A product I like that works wonderfully is Fresh Wave, available at Target.
- Shine up and dust all surfaces – Don’t forget to clean the not-so-obvious places: crown molding, ceiling fans, light switches and plugs, cabinet pulls doors and door knobs – the little things matter.
- Hunt for mold – Grab a small brush, bleach and water, and hunt that black slime down. It can hide in corners, particularly in bathrooms.
- Carpets and area rugs – Rent a carpet cleaner to freshen them up. If you have a piece of furniture covering a big stain, make sure you cover those areas, too. Area rugs can be taken outside, dusted, and spot cleaned.
- Get rid of your clutter – We have ideas on how to hide your stuff, but be sure to think about the not-so-obvious things. We advise you to put away things that make your house personalized to you, such as family photos and trophies. The goal is to make a potential buyer seem themselves living there, and personal items make that harder.
A few tips for staging your home – before you get to this step, make sure any repairs have been completed and you are ready to begin showing. Replace broken or burned out lightbulbs, check for broken windows, locks, and any water leaks that could be deal breakers. Read our tips for quick, budget-friendly home upgrades to get a few more ideas.
- Set the table – In your dining area, a nicely set table and some flowers can look inviting and add warmth.
- Rearrange your furniture – you may need to take a few pieces out if you have a lot of furniture. Open, inviting spaces with well-placed furniture help your house look more move-in ready.
- Tone down the eclectic wall colors – A neon green accent wall might be perfect for you, but remember – you want prospective buyers to picture themselves living there. Neutral colors work best.
- Define each room – Each room should have a purpose. In our house, our home office has become the room of, “where should I put this?” Clean all that stuff out.
- Be prepared – Potential buyers are going to look in your closets. Don’t forget about those, too!
Congratulations! Your house is ready to sell!
…and we’re here to help. Contact us and we’ll help you put the finishing touches on your newly-listed home. We are here and ready to help you transition to your next phase!