A Good First Impression
Get Your Home Ready To Sell
A common mistake people make is to spend a lot of money – on major renovations and remodeling. While buyers will be impressed with these things, it will not add to your sale. Spend where you need it most, moderate updates and cosmetic maintenance, readily seen features like interior and exterior painting. The time of a major remodel is when you plan to stay in the house, not when you’re going to sell.
If you think about everything that needs to be done to sell your house, you might throw your hands up in the air, or at least feel some anxiety. Take one step at a time, one small task at a time. Break it down to manageable-sized chores and you’ll have better results. Don't forget to contact a Realtor who can give you advice on the market, what is selling, and how it compares to your home.
First things first – have a garage sale. Whatever doesn’t sell needs to be set out for a Donation. Once the clutter is cleared away, it will be easier to see what needs to be done.
This is your first impression, so let's make it a good one.
l Edge, mow and fertilize the lawn regularly. Make sure it’s well watered and reseed any sparse areas.
l Put a bright coat of paint on your mailbox.
l Trim hedges, weed lawns and flowerbeds and prune trees regularly. Cut back overgrown shrubbery that looks scraggly or keeps light out of the house.
l Buy a new welcome mat.
l Check the foundation, steps, walkways, walls, and patios for cracks and crumbling, and reseal if possible.
l If you have siding or brick, power-wash it. If you have a painted exterior, consider repainting in a neutral shade. This is especially important if there is any peeling.
l Make sure the porch light works.
l Clean and align gutters and downspouts.
l Inspect and clean the chimney.
l If the doorbell doesn’t work, repair or replace it.
l Inspect, repair, and replace loose or damaged roof shingles and seal a flat roof.
l Repair and repaint loose siding and caulking.
l Remove oil stains from the driveway and garage.
l If you’re selling in the winter, keep walks neatly cleared of snow and ice. Otherwise, keep the walks and driveway swept.
l Repair broken outdoor steps.
l Spring for some brightly colored potted outdoor flower arrangements for the front yard near the entrance.
l Keep your garage door closed.
l Wash the windows inside and out.
l Store RVs, boats and extra vehicles (anything that can’t be parked in the garage) elsewhere while the house is on the market.
l Paint the front door.
If prospective buyers walk into your house greeted by the smell of cat litter, cigarette smoke, mildew, or pet accidents, there is little chance that even a reduced sales price will persuade them to buy. So the first thing to do:
l Clean, clean, clean. This includes walls, floors, inside closets, and cabinets – everything. If you must, hire a cleaning service to come in and do the job.
l Get rid of clutter. Put away appliances you normally leave on countertops. This alone will make your house appear bigger and brighter. Clean out your closets, garage. With less clutter and personalization, the more the buyer can see themselves, and the potential the house has for their family.
l Paint the walls and ceilings a neutral color – off white or beige.
l Repair cracks, holes and damage to plaster, wallboard, wallpaper, paint, and tiles.
l Replace broken or cracked windowpanes, moldings and other woodwork.
l Repair dripping faucets and showerheads.
l Buy new cabinet knobs and curtains for the kitchen.
l Replace or shampoo all carpets, scrub and seal tile, wash and shine wood floors.
l Unclog slowly draining sinks and tubs.
l Clean out the fireplace and lay some logs in it.
l Mend torn screens. Clean out all window tracks.
l Check to see that all windows will open and close.
l Replace burned-out light bulbs. Use brighter light bulbs.
l Make sure every light switch works.
l Nail down any creaking boards or stair treads (drive two long finishing nails at opposing angles through the floor and sub-floor into the joist).
l Lubricate any squeaking doors
l Downsize furniture and open up space
l Thoroughly clean all appliances (especially refrigerator and oven).
l Replace old toilet seats and shower curtains.
l Clear all cobwebs from corners and doorways.
l Wash all light switches, handrails, and doorknobs.
On Showing Days
l Keep draperies and shades open to let in the light.
l Place fresh flowers throughout the house.
l Have your home well-lit during showing.
l At night, turn on porch light and outdoor lighting in back if you have it.
l Set out colorful, luxurious towels in the bathroom.
l Clean and tidy the house.
l Keep any toys in the children’s rooms, bikes, wagons, and skateboards in the garage.
l Play pleasant music at low volume.
l Spend the day of an open house away from home or a specified time of requested agent showings.
l Leave pets outdoors.
l Your Realtor should provide you with feedback from visitors and other agents after the showing. If not be sure to ask.
Basic maintenance and a little staging can go a long way. With professional pictures set up by your Realtor, buyers can receive a good first impression of your home.
If you are getting ready to sell, have questions, or would like a free consultation on my digital marketing plan and/or your neighborhood market. Please don't hesitate to call, text, or leave me a message here. I am more than happy to help with all your Real Estate needs.
Enjoy Your Day! :-)
Be Safe and Well!
Author: Mary Ganci
June 16th 2020
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