As a potential home owner i have spent hours go to various homes and inspecting them trying to decide if one will fit my expectations and needs. One of the first things i do is browse on-line at local agents websites to see what is listed. Then once i get a nice sized list i start my search on foot. Ill do a drive by and if i like the outside, ill make an appointment to come inside.
But the outside has to sell. This is a key point in buying or selling a house. The first thing you see. If i drive by a house and the yard is messy, If the paint is peeling off the porch, or the gutters are broken, I wont want to look inside. So the first step is making the outward appearance as appealing as possible. Clean up all yard toys and equipment, and pack many away. If you have a shed or porch, consider repainting or staining it. Clean your front door. Patch your roof, fix the gutters. Maybe add a few pots of flowers outside. Pansies are pretty and very simple to grow. Mowing the lawn regularly as well makes a world of difference. Make sure your door locks properly and the key turns easily. If you have an issue, consider replacing the knob. Then step back and view your yard from a newcomers eyes. Is there more you can do to make your house as appealing as possible?
Now your house looks neat from the outside, Buyers such as myself are more likely to want to see the inside. There are many little tricks that you can do there to maximize your selling potential. The first and largest step is to pack away as many of your personal belongings as possible. Remove photos and knickknacks, trophies and collectibles, anything that makes the house personal.
Starting in the kitchen is an easy place. Remove everything from the counter tops. Even if you use it daily. Use it then store it our of view. You want the buyer to see their things in that area. Make sure your cabinets are uncluttered as well. Pack up as much of your cookware and dishes as possible. Consider using disposable dishes. Use up as much of your stored food as possible, plan your menus around what you already have. Remove all items from below your sink, prospective buyers often want to check for signs of water damage. Expect possible buyers to open your cabinets and drawers. They want to see what kind of space there is available.
Other areas to target in your house. Closets. Closets are full of things we rarely use. But must keep. Shoes, jackets, clothes, games, you name it, people store it. Pack it all away. Everything you don’t use. Better yet have a garage sale and make some extra money off of it. Your Furniture is the next step. Most people, myself included have too much in our homes to begin with. You want to remove as much as possible. Open up every room by removing as many items as you can. Pack the books and store the bookshelves. Basements, Garages, Attics and sheds also accumulate things. Store in an off site storage unit and consider again the garage sale.
Another thing to consider, Replacing all things that need to be, and a few things to make your house look better. Replace light bulbs, faucets anything that doesn’t look new. If your walls cannot be cleaned by scrubbing then consider a new coat of neutral paint. Replacing carpets is not necessary but do get a professional cleaning done on them, and keep them clean. Replace any broken tiles but don’t spend much, your only fixing the house up to sell. Check all your windows to make sure they open easy. Replace any broken window panes. Make sure all doors open easily and noiselessly. WD-40 clears up any issues with opening doors and windows. Remember your trying to make this place look as open, inviting and clean as possible.
Smell is a big issue. You may not notice any smells if you are used to being there, but visitors often will. Don’t smoke in the house if you smoke. If you have pets, clean out cages, and litter boxes often, keep larger animals such as dogs outside or in a garage as much as possible. Consider using an air sanitizer to help with pet related odors. Clean the oven and microwave regularly, try to make sure that there is no oder left over when someone comes to see the house.
With a little time, effort and care you can get your house looking as new and fresh as possible to attract a home buyer. Consider the little maintenances an investment that is on its way to paying out. Remember that when the buyer walks into your house, they need to be able to envision their own belongings there. They need to see the rooms’ sizes and feel at home. They need to see the storage available and know that everything in the house works properly. Removing personal belongings, extra furniture and touching up around the house is a key factor in selling quickly.