Here are some helpful hints- recommended by experienced realtors - to help you prepare your home to sell. This information is not all-inclusive and does not replace the expertise provided by a realtor.
First Impressions Do Count
Contact a local realtor for some helpful advice.
Make sure your front entrance is clean and inviting.
Paint or replace your front door (if it shows signs of wear).
Decorate for a Quick Sale
Replace faded wall paper.
Repair worn woodwork.
Paint a neutral color over walls that look old.
Let the Sun Shine In
Open draperies and curtains.
Let the prospect see how cheerful your home can be.
Turn on all lights during evening inspections.
Simple Repairs Can Make a Difference
Repair loose knobs, sticking doors and windows, warped cabinet drawers, broken light switches and other minor flaws.
These defects detract from the value of the home. (Remember, when prospects see things that need attention, they begin
to worry about what they can't see).
Organize from Top to Bottom
Remove all unnecessary clutter from your attic, basement and closets. Spacious rooms
(particularly storage areas) are great selling features.
Consider having a garage sale to dispose of unwanted items.
Investigate the cost to store some items.
Keep stairways clear and avoid a cluttered appearance.
Don't overload wall outlets.
Make Your Home Sparkle
Keep your windows clean.
Steam clean (or replace) your carpets.
Glue back any peeling wallpaper.
Remove ashtrays and throw out the trash. (It's important to give a good impression of how you have maintained your home.)
It's a Fact: Bathrooms Help Sell Homes
Check and repair caulking in bathtubs and showers.
Display fresh, clean towels and make the room attractive.
Spray a light fragrance and make the room pleasant smelling.
Arrange Bedrooms Neatly
Remove excess furniture.
Use attractive bedspreads and freshly laundered curtains.
Don't Cause Controversy
Remove any signs or posters that might be controversial or offensive to your prospects.
So You're Ready for an Open House - What's Next?
So your house is ready to sell. Great! Here are some tried and true "rules" that will help you show your home easily and effectively.
Rule 1: Three's a Crowd
Try not to be present during inspections. The potential buyer will feel like an intruder and will hurry through the house. Also, your realtor knows the buyer's requirements and can better emphasize the features of your home when you don't tag along.
Rule 2: Keep the Music Down
Pipe in classical or soft rock music, but keep the volume down low so the sales associate and buyer can talk freely without any disturbances.
Rule 3: No Pets Allowed
Keep cats, dogs, litter boxes and feeding dishes out of the way - preferably out of the house.
Rule 4: Create a Homey Atmosphere
Bake cookies or bread, or place cornmeal in a pie plate in a warm over on the day of the showing. The aroma will make the potential buyer feel welcomed.
Rule 5: No Apologies
If you are present at the showing, never apologize for the appearance of your home. After all, it has been lived in. Let the Certified Residential Specialist answer any objections - it's his/her job.
Rule 6: Have Records Available
Have copies of your electric, gas and water bills for the past 12 months available. Also be ready to show all home improvement and repair bills (e.g. showing when the new roof was put on and when a new water heater was installed).
Rule 7: Silence is Golden
Let your realtor discuss price, terms, possession and other factors with the buyers. Your realtor is qualified to bring negotiations to a favorable conclusion.
Rule 8: A Little Money Goes a Long Way
Your cooperation in cosmetic repairs will increase everyone's interest level and enthusiasm and you'll help close the sale more quickly.