Preparing Your Home for Sale

Home staging is the art of preparing a home for sale. Two of our favorite TV shows that focus on this topic are Designed to Sell and Sell this House. Wikipedia also has overview of home staging

15 Helpful Tips To Prepare Your Home To Sell

  1. De-clutter: It's one of the most important steps to preparing your home for sale, and the one that every seller dreads. Nevertheless, go through your home room by room and dispose of or donate any items you do not intend to pack for your move. Then, get a head-start on your packing by putting any oversized items or large collections into storage.
  2. Once your first round of decluttering is complete, do it again, with a focus on closets and other storage areas.
  3. Now that you’ve made some visual and literal space, it’s time for a house-wide deep cleaning, focusing especially on bathrooms and kitchen.
  4. Observe your home “from the curb,” making sure everything is neat and clean.
  5. Ensure that windows are sparkling clean – and remove screens if it is winter to let more light in.
  6. Replace dim light bulbs and make sure that light fixtures are clean.
  7. Attend to little repairs - sticky doors, loose doorknobs, damaged screens, loose handrails, etc.
  1. Repair appliances, kitchen and bathroom fixtures.
  2. Consider hiring a licensed home inspector before putting your home on the market so that you can address potential problems before buyers can make them an issue.
  3. Clean carpets and upholstery: Have carpets and upholstery professionally cleaned, especially if stains are visible or you have a pet.
  4. Remove outdated wall paper (it’s easier to do than you think!) and paint and/or re-paper as necessary using neutral colors.
  5. If you have hardwood floors under carpet, consider removing the carpet and refinish those floors to add even more value to the home.
  6. Replace any items, such as chandeliers, which will not remain with the property
  7. Keep lawn and shrubbery trimmed.
  8. Finally, look at your home with a critical eye, as if you were the buyer, and do whatever else needs to be done to show off the property to its best advantage.

7 Helpful Tips to Prepare for a Showing

  1. Plan on being away from your property when the property is shown. Buyers will be more relaxed and feel free to ask questions.
  2. Consider keeping pets outdoors or taking them for a walk during an open house. Pets can be a distraction and prevent buyers from comfortably exploring the home.
  3. Make your home welcoming in the winter! Be sure to keep walkways shoveled and free of ice. Also, adorn the interior of your home with photos containing images of spring and summer. In particular, hang a photo of your home as it appears during the warmer months. Flowers, a green lawn and a sunny backdrop will help buyers see the home through all seasons.
  1. Be sure the bathrooms and kitchen are sparkling clean and fresh smelling. (The aroma of something baking is a plus.)
  2. Check the yard and entryways for neatness.
  3. Open drapes – and if the property is to be shown on a dark day or in the evening, set the lighting to create a warm atmosphere.
  4. Make sure that the television, stereo and radio are off before leaving the house.