Helpful Guide to Preparing Your Home For Sale

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Luke Martin
Luke Martin
I am Luke Martin, a writer who loves homes. My words are about creating comfy and nice living spaces. Let's explore ideas for decorating and making homes cozy together. Join me on this journey to make your house a special place to be.

Have you ever watched a friend or a family member trying to sell their home? If you have never experienced it for yourself, it is extremely stressful even for the most seasoned of sellers. There is just so much that needs to be done.

Where should you begin? Here are the things you need to do to get your house ready to sell: 

1. Deep Clean the House to the Max

You want people to come into your home and look at it. You don’t want potential buyers to walk into your house and then walk right back out because it’s dirty. Nobody enjoys going into a dirty house especially if a person is considering buying yours.

You will need to start somewhere. Sometimes, though it’s hard to figure out where. So let’s focus on the one room of the house that will probably be used the absolute most.

The one room that will more than likely be the biggest determining factor in selling your house will be the kitchen. If there is not much love for the kitchen, people won’t be as excited to buy the house. A study by the National Sanitation Foundation discovered that the kitchen is the dirtiest room in a house with the highest concentration of germs. So, here are a few ideas of where to start within your kitchen:

  • Dust the top of the cabinets
  • Clean all the dirt off of all surfaces
  • Consider updating the hardware on all cabinets and drawers
  • Replace the countertops if there is any visible damage
  • Organize the inside of your cabinets
  • Clean tile grout 
  • Clean the inside of appliances 

People center their lives on their families and cooking for them. Make sure the space flows well from one area to the other. Also, make this space as inviting as possible for the making of memories in the future.

2. Upgrade the Inside

Make the master bedroom appealing to men and women, whether it’s a couple or someone who is single. Take the time to fix other interior flaws such as dings, scratches or holes on the walls, ceiling, or floors. Replace any light fixtures that are out of date or style.

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Paint or repaint all the rooms of the house a light and neutral color. Consider upgrades in areas only where they are obviously needed. You don’t want the upgrades that you make to the house to cause it to become overpriced in comparison to other houses in the area.

3. Stage the Interior 

There is no doubt that it’s important to stage your home for sale before you put it on the market. It’s common knowledge that selling a home requires a lot of fixing up before you put it on the market, and your home is no exception. One reason it’s so important to stage your home is that it can help to sell your home faster. When someone makes an offer on your home, it’s often based upon what they see when they walk through the door.

When staging each room, make them appear as large as possible. Optimize the light inside of your home with new light bulbs and opening curtains and blinds. You also want to de-personalize your house by storing most of your personal items and replacing them with neutral items that help pull the room together, such as candles, flowers, or paintings on the walls.

4. Refresh the Exterior of the House

Staging is an essential part of preparing your home for sale. While there are many components that go into staging a home for sale, one of the most important is refreshing its exterior. In order to sell a home quickly and at a profit, you need to start working on the outside of the home from the very beginning of your staging process. Potential buyers are always looking for homes with nice appearances, and the first impression your property makes is likely to stick around for a very long time.

Sometimes, the first impression is the only impression that you are going to get to make. Make the exterior of the house look inviting to others. Here are a few things you can start with:

Yard Work

Kristina Morales, an expert real estate agent from Orange County, California, confirms in her recent blog post that the appealing front yard not only influences the final decision of a buyer but also can increase the value of your property. Make sure you keep up with the mowing and weed eating around your yard. Trim the hedges and any low lying branches. You should consider planting flowers and mulching existing beds.

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Gutters are one of the most neglected parts of a home. It is particularly important to clean out the gutters if tree limbs and leaves are visible from the ground. However, a building inspector may mention clogged gutters in their report. In that case, a buyer may ask you to clean the gutters before the final walk through. 

Repair the Garage Door

The garage door is one of the first things people see when they pull up to your house. In fact, upgrading your door could bring in up to an 80% return on investment. If you are going to install a new door, make sure you choose a reputable company for the project. 

Rent Out Garage

Refresh the Front Door

Just like the garage door, the front door is among the first things buyers take notice of, as it’s the spot where a buyer and real estate agent usually arrange their meeting. 

If you aren’t looking to increase your property’s value, installing a brand new door isn’t a necessity. But making sure it looks pretty is important. Miami real estate professionals from advise that a door painted a contrasting color to the wall is an effective trick to make a good impression.

Besides the appearance, think about how secure it is. If the door is weak or has unreliable locks, consider investing in the safety of your property—changing or adding locks or replacing the door with a heavier one.

Have the Air Conditioning and Heating Unit Serviced

Have a company come out and service your AC and heating unit before you put your house on the market. It could save you the surprise of having the unit break while it is on the market.

Replacing an older unit is usually a better choice then repairing it over and over again. Also, they make the point that newer units have better energy efficiency. A professional will let you know if there are any pending issues and if you may need to replace the unit. 

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Make Your Pool Safer

If you have a swimming pool, consider investing in pool safety equipment, such as a fence with a locking gate, for the safety of children and pets viewing or moving into the house. Rick Leviton, a pool safety expert from Houston, TX, shares an additional benefit of a safe pool in this post on the site of his company Pool Guard Texas: by making the pool safer, you can get a good discount on home insurance, which can be a big draw for potential buyers.

5. List and Market Your House

Make high-quality pictures to use them when marketing your house online. Good photos will help attract more potential buyers to your property. Then, list your house on all possible real estate platforms as well as Craigslist and other free advertisement sites to maximize exposure.

If you have your own blog, it’s another helpful resource to let people know about your property. Make a blog post advertising the sale of your house. Describe all the good features of your home, include a funny story, video and beautiful photos to make the post engaging. It will ensure that not only your friends and family will be able to see your listing but also users who are actually looking to buy a house. 

Share a link to the post with your followers on social media sites. And even if you don’t have a blog, let your friends and subscribers know that you are selling a house.

Don’t forget about off-line marketing. Put up a “for sale” sign on your property and submit your advertisement to local newspapers.

A frustrating experience that’s common to most people selling their homes is how slow the process can be, particularly if you’re having problems locating a buyer. Whether you need to relocate into a new house or have other reasons to be in a rush, selling your house to a cash home buyer may be the best way to accomplish this.

The benefits of going with cash buyers may outweigh the hassle of waiting and trying to sell your house by yourself. You should get in touch with Element Homebuyers if you’re not keen on putting effort into marketing the house for sale or meeting potential buyers at open houses. Plus, the fact that you don’t have to meet with an agent also means that you won’t have to pay for fees and commissions to complete the sale.

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6. Consider Hiring a Real Estate Agent

If you are not planning on selling your house yourself start looking for a reputable and trustworthy Realtor. A Realtor will take on the marketing, organizing showings and negotiating with potential buyers. It’s all included into their commission (usually about 3% of the selling price of your house). Even if you are selling your house by yourself, you still can use limited Realtor services for a smaller fee.

View local realtor websites and online listings to see how much exposure potential is available to you. A Realtor can also help educate you on the value of your house versus the value of the other houses that are similar in the area to set the best-selling price. 

If you ask for top high of a price your house has the potential of sitting on the market with no one willing to look at it, causing other potential buyers to question if there is something wrong with your house or property.

7. Start Showing Your House

Make sure that your house is available most times of the day for potential showings. Also, set up open houses to have multiple buyers view the house in one day.

During these times make sure that you leave and return about 15 to 20 minutes of the showings. Make sure that the interior of the house feels warm or cool. If you have a pet, take it with you and if you can’t keep your pet with you, take your pet to a pet daycare or a place that will do a daily boarding.

Getting your house ready to sell is not easy. You can do it though. You just need to put in some effort in areas you wouldn’t normally think about, a little work, and some patience. The rest will fall into place and you will have your house sold maybe even sooner than you think.

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