Depersonalize Your House
Try to remove your personal photographs, family heirlooms, and other objects that might distract potential buyers. You want to present buyers with a clean environment so they can imagine the home perhaps decorated with their own photographs, furniture, and art objects. Regarding furniture, only leave understated pieces that are not a distraction and don’t create an unintended impression.
The goal is to make it easy for a potential buyer to see the house as their future home.
Declutter Your House
We all love items over the years we tend to collect lots of them. Many of us keep items because of an emotional attachment, we feel we will reuse or fix the items in the future, or maybe we want to pass it on to other generations. However, for many items, if you haven’t used them in over a year, you probably don’t need them. You may consider discarding items in a useful way by donating them to a charity or nonprofit.
Also, remove books from bookcases and other knickknacks, and clean everything off your kitchen counters. Essential items that you use daily can be tucked away in small boxes that you can place in a closet when they’re not in use. Consider this process an efficient start to your packing.
Organize Bedroom Closets and Storage Cabinets
Buyers will be curious about storage space and will want to check closets and cabinets. Yes, they will be opening your closets and looking into all your personal space associated with the home. It’s important to ensure these are organized.
When a buyer sees everything organized down to the last detail, it shows that you take care of your possessions and likely took good care of the house
Consider Renting a Storage Unit
Almost every home shows better with less furniture. Remove pieces that block or hamper paths and walkways and put them in storage, along with distracting furniture, artwork, and empty bookcases.
Leave just enough furniture to showcase the room’s purpose with plenty of room for buyers to move around.
Remove or Replace Favorite Items
If at all possible try to remove certain window coverings, built-in appliances, or fixtures that you will be taking with you, remove them prior to showing the house. Telling a buyer they can’t have an item that appears with the house and enhances its appeal can hurt the sale.
Make Minor Repairs
In some seller’s markets, you can sell a home in lived-in condition without much complaint. But in normal markets or a buyer’s market, repairs can make or break a sale.
Replace or repair cracked floors or counter tiles and patch any holes in the walls. Fix leaky faucets and doors that don’t close properly, as well as kitchen drawers that jam. Consider painting walls neutral colors. Don’t give buyers any reason to remember your home as “the one with the purple bathroom.”
Replace burned-out light bulbs and also consider replacing those that have been in service for a while. You want the buyer’s experience to be as positive as possible. Throw open the curtains and blinds and turn on those lights. Houses show better when each room is clean and bright.
Make the House Shine
Preparing your home to be viewed by potential buyers may require some cleaning. Cleaning may include washing the windows inside and out; making sure the outside of the home is cleaned and sidewalks are clear; re-caulking tubs, showers, and sinks; and polishing chrome faucets and mirrors. Make sure all of the dust is removed from under the furniture, in the cabinets and closets, and everywhere else it could be hiding. Hang up fresh guest towels. Also, keep the toilet lid closed when it’s not in use.
Kitchens are a big selling point for many buyers, so make sure yours is as spotless and uncluttered as possible. In the event someone decided to opens your refrigerator, make sure they are pleasantly surprised and it appears clean and orderly.
Be sure to clean and air out any musty areas. The day before a showing, avoid cooking particularly odorous foods. Some foods have smells that can linger the day after. Also, if you have pets, monitor litter boxes or any other areas affected by pets.
Revisit your Curb Appeal
A potential sale is lost quickly if a buyer won’t even get out of their agent’s car because the exterior of your home turns them off. Make the exterior more pop and inviting by touching up your front door and, maybe, adding some décor to the door. Like a wreath and a welcome mat, or placing one or two flower pots on your front porch. You don’t have to have the yard of the month, but try doing some landscaping to clean up your lawn and add a few shrubs or flowering plants. Fix any cracks on your front steps or walkway. Also, make sure visitors can clearly see your house number.
The Final Step
Take a look inside your home, stand in the doorway of each room and think how your house will look to a potential buyer. Pay attention to how the furniture is arranged and rearrange pieces until the room looks visually appealing. Make sure any art work and window coverings hang evenly. Once you’ve cleaned and gotten everything repaired and organized, Now the Journey begins. Time to Sale your home.