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Tips for a better showing on your home for sale

You may or may not have your own home for sale at this point. If you have listed your home for sale, may I offer some great tips as your home is shown to potential homebuyers? I have heard some wonderful tips over the years from Real Estate Agents and home buyers that I thought we would pass along to you.

  • De-Personalize
    • Pack up those personal photographs and family heirlooms. Buyers can’t see past personal artifacts, and you don’t want them to be distracted. You want buyers to imagine their own photos on the walls, and they can’t do that if yours are there! You don’t want to make any buyer ask, “I wonder what kind of people live in this home?” You want buyers to say, “I can see myself living here.”
  • De-Clutter
    • People collect an amazing quantity of “stuff”. Consider this: if you haven’t used it in over a year, you probably don’t need it. If you don’t need it, why not donate it or throw it away? Remove all books from bookcases. Pack up those knickknacks. Clean off everything on kitchen counters. Put essential items used daily in a small box that can be stored in a closet when not in use. Think of this process as a head-start on the packing you will eventually need to do anyway.
  • Rearrange/Organize Bedroom Closets and Kitchen Cabinets
    • Buyers love to snoop and will open closet and cabinet doors. Think of the message it sends if items fall out! Now imagine what a buyer believes about you if she sees everything organized. It says you probably take good care of the rest of the house as well. This means:
      • Alphabetize spice jars
      • Neatly stack dishes
      • Turn coffee cup handles facing the same way
      • Hang shirts together, buttoned and facing the same direction
      • Line up shoes
      • Rent a Storage Unit (or borrow garage space)

Almost every home shows better with less furniture. Remove pieces of furniture that block or hamper paths and walkways and put them in storage. Since your bookcases are now empty, store them. Remove extra leaves from your dining room table to make the room appear larger. Leave just enough furniture in each room to showcase the room’s purpose and plenty of room to move around. You don’t want buyers scratching their heads and saying, “What is this room used for?”

  • Make Minor Repairs
    • Replace cracked floor or counter tiles
    • Patch holes in walls
    • Fix leaky faucets
    • Fix doors that don’t close properly and kitchen drawers that jam
    • Consider painting your walls neutral colors (Don’t give buyers any reason to remember your home as “the house with the orange bathroom.”)
    • Replace burned-out light bulbs
  • Make the House Sparkle!
    • Spring clean… no matter the season!
    • Rent a pressure washer and spray down sidewalks and exterior
    • Re-caulk tubs, showers and sinks
    • Replace worn rugs
    • Hang up fresh towels
    • Clean and air out any musty smelling areas
    • Go outside and open your front door. Stand there. Do you want to go inside? Does the house welcome you? If yes… you’re done!
    • Bake something! Chocolate chip cookies are a great choice; then set them out for the people viewing your house
  • Check Curb Appeal
    • If a buyer won’t get out of her agent’s car because she doesn’t like the exterior of your home, you’ll never get her inside
    • Keep the sidewalks cleared
    • In season – mow the lawn and plant yellow flowers or group flower pots together. Yellow is proven to evoke a buying emotion. Marigolds are an inexpensive choice
    • Paint faded window trim
    • Clean up your landscaping
    • Make sure visitors can clearly read your house number

These are just a few tips I’ve come across. Be sure to ask your real estate agent for advice on prepping your house for a showing. Good luck and have fun!

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