How to Prepare Your “Home For Sale”

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What more could you want than to get your home sold for top dollar in short order without any hassles? If you take a moment and read through the following suggestions before you put your property on the market, you will be on your way to a successful sale.


Drive-up Appeal

Trim trees and shrubs, clean out flower beds and invest in a few flats of colorful flowers, paint the front door, make sure doorbell is working properly, wash the mailbox, keep the porch swept and get an attractive mat for people to wipe their feet.


Absolute Basics

  • §  Start by airing out the home. Most people are turned off by even the smallest odor. Odors must be eliminated, especially if you have dogs, cats or young children in diapers or if you are a smoker.
  • §  Wash all the windows in the house, inside and out.
  • §  If it has been over a year since the carpets have been cleaned, now is the time to do it. Bare floors should also be waxed or polished.
  • §  Put bright light bulbs in every socket made for a bulb. Buyers like bright and cheery homes.
  • §  Clean out closets, cabinets and drawers. Closets should look as if they have enough room to hold additional items. Get everything off the floor and don’t have the shelves piled to the ceiling.
  • §  Make sure there is not too much furniture in a room. Select pieces that look best, and put others in the garage or storage.
  • §  Go over the kitchen like a health inspector. Clean the oven, range (new drip pans) and the seal of the dishwasher door.
  • §  Bathtubs, showers and sinks should be freshly caulked. The grout should be clean and in good condition. There should be no leaks in the faucets or traps.


A Few Unrelated Suggestions

  • §  If you have limited counter space in the kitchen, keep unnecessary items put away.
  • §  Keep children’s toys out of the front yard, sidewalks and front porch.
  • §  Recognize the difference between decorator touches and clutter or sterility.
  • §  Clean the ashes out of the fireplace.
  • §  Make sure that the pull-down staircase is working correctly. Be sure there is a light in the attic.
  • §  The pool needs to be sparkling and free of leaves.


For those Willing To Go the Extra Mile

  • §  There are some things you can do that will add flair to your home. If your home is the least bit dated, you may want to replace wallpaper in the entry, kitchen and bathrooms and consider replacing outdated light fixtures.
  • §  Fresh paint on interior and/or exterior where needed.
  • §  New appliances in the kitchen can be an exciting feature that can actually make the difference in a buyer choosing your home over another.


Showing Your Home

  • §  When you leave the house in the morning or during the day, leave it as if you know it is going to be shown.
  • §  Turn off the radio or television. Leave soft music playing.
  • §  Keep pets out of the way—preferably out of the house. Many people are acutely uncomfortable around some animals and may even be allergic to them.
  • §  Leave your premises. Take a short break while your home is being shown. Buyers are intimidated when sellers are present and tend to hurry through the house. Let the buyer be at ease, and let the agents do their job.


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