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So, you have decided to list your property on the market.
Some Things to Know When Selling Your Home
Now that you are ready to sell your home, it is time to prepare the property for sale. One of the most important things to remember is that you only get one chance to make a first impression. The time you take initially to prepare your home for sale will prove invaluable once it hits the market. These are important points to keep in mind when preparing your home for the market:
- Go through all your paperwork on the property and prepare your documents to be complete and readily available, i.e. deed/mortgage satisfaction letter/copies of rental agreements, utility bills, tax bills, etc./utility company contact info/etc.
- Make sure all outstanding town/city permits are closed out and building violations cleared.
- Speak to your accountant regarding the sale of your home with regard to any tax issues you should keep in mind.
3. De-personalize, De-Clutter and Get Organized
- When selling a house, you want to create an environment whereby buyers can envision themselves in the space. Removing as many personal items and photos keeps potential buyers from being distracted.
- Getting rid of excess furniture and other items that are not being used on a daily basis makes a living area feel more spacious. Clearing bookshelves, tabletops, and china cabinets of “chachkis” will also help to make the space feel bigger. Begin at your front door and go through the entire house tossing, donating and packing up everything in order to make the house feel less cluttered. Don’t forget the basement, attic and garage.
- Organize the closets and kitchen cabinets. Sort like items of clothing and shoes together, place things in neat storage boxes and keep hangers facing in the same direction making the most use of closet space. Arrange kitchen cabinets so labels face forward, jars/cans/boxes are in rows, dishware is neatly stacked and everything appears in its place.
4. Remove Your Movables & Lighten Up!
Get rid of heavy drapery and window coverings that make the space feel dark and heavy. Open up the blinds and shades and let the light in from every window available. Bright, sunny rooms sell houses. Once the house is ready for showing, keep the doors open to the rooms throughout the house, with the exception of bathrooms, providing uninhibited access and traffic flow.
5. Repair it or Replace it
- Paint rooms to freshen things up.
- Paint the Front door, garage door and any exterior trim to make the house more inviting.
- Replace house numbers with new, visible and attractive lettering.
- Replace burned out light bulbs and old/outdated or rusty light fixtures.
- Replace broken or outdated appliances, leaky faucets and fixtures.
- Re-caulk/Re-grout tiles in baths and kitchens.
- Fix any broken locks, doors, sliders, screens and drawers to ensure everything opens easily. A little “WD40” goes a long way.
6. Make The House Sparkle & Shine – Inside and Out
- Vacuum and clean all carpets, rugs and window coverings.
- Dust the furniture and mop the floors.
- Wash the windows and don’t forget the window blinds.
- Put out fresh kitchen and bath towels, blankets and bedspreads.
- Air out closed spaces and place lightly scented air fresheners throughout your home.
- Remember the utility room – clean gas/oil burners and dust free water tanks speak volumes to prospective buyers.
- Make the front entry inviting by clearing cobwebs and replacing all the welcome mats.
7. Consider the Curb Appeal of the Home
- Make sure the lawn is mowed, the leaves are raked and the snow is plowed.
- Trim the hedges and replace overgrown bushes.
- Plant flowers to make the home more inviting and appealing from the street.
- Make the front entry picture perfect with lovely planters, a bench, and new mailbox.
8. Final Staging
- Arrange the furniture making sure pathways are clear and rooms feel spacious and defined.
- Adjust and align window shades and blinds so they are level and let the maximum light into the rooms.
- Pay close attention to bathrooms ensuring toilet lids are down and private toiletries are not visible.
- Place fresh flower arrangements in the entry and/or kitchen.
- Take one final walk through the house and make final adjustments considering the buyers’ perspective.
- Now that the property is ready to show, call your realtor to arrange for pictures to be taken of the entire property, inside and out.
9. It’s Showtime!
- Make your home available for open houses.
- Maintain the cleanliness of your home, inside and out, on a daily basis.
- Keep promotional flyers showcasing the house on the kitchen counter for all buyers.
- To avoid “being put on the spot” as a seller, it is best to take a backseat to your Realtor and allow the listing agent to direct all showings and field all questions from potential buyers. Your realtor will meet with you in a private setting to discuss everything in further detail.
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