If you’re considering listing your home in the next few months, there are three main things you need to do to prepare your home. Use this short list as your guide, then speak with a Realtor®, your local real estate market expert, who can provide more specific suggestions for your property in particular.
It may be a seller’s market, but…
The frenzied pitch of the market is no longer as intense. There may be limited inventory in your area, but you still want to appeal to the largest group of potential buyers to ensure you receive offers that are in line with what your home is really worth. Preparing your home communicates to potential buyers that the home is valuable, attractive, and well cared for.
1. Show the home is cared for.
Even though you are preparing to leave your home, you still need to demonstrate to potential buyers that the home has been cared for. Buyers prefer homes that clearly seem loved and lived in, so take a step back and view your home as a brand-new visitor. Walk through the rooms slowly and notice where your eyes go first. Are there any areas in need of cleaning or things in need of repair? Focus your efforts there first.
How do you show a home is cared for?
Vacuum and sweep the floors. Touch up the scuffs in the paint. Clean the windows inside and out. Fix broken lights, holes in drywall, or loose wiring.
2. Make the home welcoming.
Prepare the home to welcome guests in photographs, during open houses, and walk-throughs. Give prospective buyers a feeling of comfort and welcome that makes them want to stay longer. Declutter closets, tables, the entryway and the kitchen counters to give your home a spacious, welcoming vibe. Remove personal effects to enable the prospective buyer to see their own family in the space. Amp up the lighting to make the room feel airy and bright.
How do you make a home welcoming?
Open the blinds and curtains for maximum daylight. Switch out light bulbs to ensure they are all working well and take your Realtors® advice about staging furniture and lighting to best maximize the space. Organize (or store away in bins) anything that makes a home feel cluttered, including decorative items, bathroom necessities, or kitchen appliances if necessary. Remove all framed photographs, notes on the refrigerator, and other personal mementos.
3. Boost the curb appeal.
Walk around the block or down the street and back again, approaching your house from all angles. What are the first things you notice? Are there overgrown bushes blocking the driveway, walkways or windows? Is there a piece of siding missing? How inviting is the front porch? First impressions matter and prospective buyers will first see a photograph of your home in the listing and then see your home from the curb as they arrive. Take a step back to view your home from that perspective.
How do you boost curb appeal?
Power wash all outdoor surfaces – concrete, asphalt, brick, siding, railings, etc – if you don’t own a power washer you can rent one from your local hardware store. Tidy up the landscaping and remove all debris, fallen leaves, garbage, and cut back overgrown shrubbery. Add mulch to any garden beds, even if you don’t actively plant in them. Freshen up the entrance with fresh flowers or potted shrub, a newly painted railing or front door, a new representation of the house number, or a new mailbox.
4. Ask a Realtor®.
This is a basic list of general suggestions to get you started as you prepare your home to sell. Everyone can benefit from following this advice. Trust in the advice a Realtor® gives you regarding what to prioritize or what else might need to be fixed, cleaned, upgraded, or otherwise changed as you prepare to sell. For larger renovations or upgrades you may be considering, they’ll be able to give you estimates and counsel whether it would be a profitable investment. A Realtors® fresh view of your home and their wealth of local area expertise make them the perfect partner when preparing your home to list.
Need to speak with a Realtor® and get help preparing your home to list? Visit www.onekeymls.com/directory to find a Realtor® in the New York metropolitan area who will work to help you prepare your home for sale and get you the best value possible.
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