- Gardening equipment/tools should be put away and hoses neatly coiled.
- Park your cars in your garage or somewhere down the street, rather than leaving them in the driveway.
- Keep your landscaping looking neat and well-kept. Bright blooms in the front yard or on the porch add curb appeal.
- If someone in the family is working on a car, a bike, or boat outside, insist that it has to go out of sight, or off the property.
- Buyers look closely at your front door, so it must be clean, freshly painted, and oiled. Brass or metal doorknobs should be polished.
- If feasible, hire someone to do a heavy-duty overhaul of all the nooks and crannies.
- Make every room look as spacious as possible.
- Check each room for hazards. Make sure all extension cords are out of sight and remove any potentially slippery throw rugs.
- Donate or pack away any knick-knacks, magazines, and clutter.
- Take a good look at your kitchen and box up everything you absolutely don’t have to use every day. Spacious counters and cupboards are visually pleasing.
- Blinds are inexpensive and a terrific solution to all kinds of window decorating problems. If your curtains are worn or faded, replace them with blinds. They give a room a fresh modern look.
Tips for the Best Showing
- Know why you’re selling and keep it to yourself.
The marketing of your home is a strategy based upon your reasons for selling. Do not reveal your motivation to anyone else or it may be used against you.
- Appearances do matter.
Appearances are so critical that it would be unwise to ignore this when selling your home. The look and feel of your home will generate a greater emotional response than any other factor.
- Invite the honest opinions of others.
The biggest mistake you can make is to rely solely on your own judgment. You need to be objective about your home’s good points as well as bad.
- Odors must go.
Odd smells, such as traces of food, pets, and smoking, can kill deals quickly. Research has suggested that clean citrus smells or peppermint are best for a clean crisp showing.
- Even if it seems insignificant, fix it and clean it.
Scrub, scour, and tidy up. Get rid of clutter and repair squeaks. Remember, you’re not just competing with other resale homes, but brand-new ones as well.
- Let prospective buyers visualize themselves in your home.
The last thing you want prospective buyers to feel when viewing your home is that they may be intruding into someone’s life. Avoid clutter, such as too many knickknacks, etc. Decorate in neutral colors, like white or beige, and place a few carefully chosen items to add warmth and character. Minimize family photos.
- If marketing a vacant home…
Studies have shown that it is more difficult to sell a home that is vacant, because it looks forlorn, forgotten, and simply not appealing. It could even cost you a closed deal.
Before the Inspection
- Remove soil or mulch from contact with siding
- Clean out dirty gutters
- Divert all water away from the house
- Trim trees, roots, and bushes back from the foundation, roof, siding, and chimney
- Paint all weathered exterior wood and caulk around the trim, chimney, windows, and doors
- Seal asphalt driveways if cracking
- Seal or point masonry chimney caps
- Clean or replace HVAC filter
- Point up any failing mortar joints in brick or block
- Test all smoke detectors and ensure they are in working condition
- Seal masonry walls in the basement
- Ensure that all windows and doors are in proper working condition
- Ensure all plumbing fixtures are in proper working condition
- Do not short cut on repairs
- Replace any burned out light bulbs
- Check to ensure crawlspace is dry
- Have clear access to attic, crawl space, heating system, garage, and any other inspected areas
- Remove any rotting wood from contact with house
- Check that bath vents are properly vented and in working condition
- Check sump pump for proper orientation
- Update attic ventilation if not present