1. Sweat the small stuff when preparing the home to list.
Most people will put on a fresh coat of paint and clean the carpets and floors when they are getting their home ready to sell, but it’s also important to pay attention to the smaller details that are sometimes overlooked. Clean baseboards, trim, and light switch plates to help your home shine like new. Align closet door tracks if they don’t function properly, and ensure that doors and windows open and close with ease. Fix anything squeaky or leaky, and make it smell nice.
2. Make it look like you don’t live there.
Put away or store any personal items. Many homes are now professionally staged before they are listed, and buyers come with an expectation that your home should look like a showcase. Spring for a professional staging if you can, as the expense usually pays for itself through quicker sales and a higher offer price. If you can’t afford it, do your best to give the appearance that your home is a model home. Bathrooms should be clear of unnecessary toiletries. Kitchen counters should be clear of most everything to show the space. Remove larger furniture items if they are taking up room. Declutter, pare down, and then go back and do it again. Less is more, and it will make your move easier as well!
3. Find a home away from home for your pets.
Even if you have a friendly dog, find a temporary place for your pooch to stay while the home is being shown. Barking and/or jumping can startle and distract folks who are trying to view the home. An escapee cat can also create an unhappy diversion for buyers.
4. Leave the home for all showings.
Give buyers the freedom to tour your home and the time to check out its features and speak freely with their agent. It can feel uncomfortable to have a seller present during a showing, and buyers may not spend as much time really looking at the home if they feel as though they are intruding on your space.
5. Make the house very available to show, especially on the first weekend.
Get out of town if you can, and allow as many people to view the home as possible. When buyers can tour a home without having to schedule an appointment ahead of time, it facilitates the maximum number of showings and typically brings about a sale more quickly and for a better price. Get out of the house, relax, and enjoy the fruits of your labor. You may get an offer while you’re at the beach!