Seller Tip #1 – Paint
While you might not have the time or money to paint your entire house, you should paint the front door and, if needed, the entry area around the front door. We’re trying to make sure any buyer who walks in has a good first impression. If you don’t have any matching paint left over from the last time your home was painted, remove a wall-plate or other fixture. Take it with you to the paint store so they can give you a can of matching paint.
Seller Tip #2 – Window Coverings
When your house is for sale, open all of your curtains and blinds. Your house will look much larger and much brighter. Of course, if you take this advice, you need to make sure that your windows are sparkling clean and that any window screens that are tattered or full of holes are replaced. If you have a window that faces something unattractive like an unkempt neighbors yard or some other eyesore, keep the curtains drawn in that room.
Seller Tip #3 – For Pool Owners
If you have a pool, make sure it is open, cleaned and has sparkling clear water at all times. Even if it’s the middle of winter, do this. You want to remind the potential buyer of how great it is to own a pool. If you have pool furniture, get it out, clean it, and set it up.
Seller Tip #4 – For Your Appliances
The kitchen area is a huge selling point for many homes. Buyers WILL notice broken and missing knobs, odd stains and appliances that don’t match. And here’s a tip…If you have appliances that don’t match, hire a pro to come out and spray the appliances so they are the same matching color. That sure is a lot cheaper than buying new appliances!
Seller Tip #5 – Speaking of the Kitchen
This is an oldie, but a goodie. You should keep a pack of easy-bake cookie dough in your refrigerator at all times. If you know your Real Estate Agent will be bringing a prospect to come see your home, you can pop some cookies in the oven about 30 minutes before their expected arrival. Everyone loves the smell of fresh-baked cookies!
Seller Tip #6 – The Driveway
If you have a concrete driveway, here are a couple of tips. First, if you know a prospect is coming to view your home, park your cars somewhere else temporarily. This might help make your driveway, and yard, look larger. Second, if you have weeds coming up between the driveway cracks, get rid of them. Lastly, if you have any type of oil or other stains, use drain cleaner on the stain and watch them disappear right before your eyes!
Seller Tip #7 – Make it Shine
Polish any brass, gold, or chrome fixtures in your home. If you have highly tarnished chrome, try using Mother’s Mag and Aluminum Polish. It works great and you can pick it up at any local auto store.
Seller Tip #8 – The Bathrooms
People are very picky when it comes to the cleanliness of kitchens and bathrooms. Take as much time as necessary to make these rooms sparkle. Clean any rust stains from your toilet, scrub the tile and shower doors and get rid of any mildew stains. Here’s a tip – if you have calcium, lime or rust stains, you should try CLR or Lime-Away. Both of these products make the process of removing stains a snap…
Seller Tip #9 – Don’t Hang Around
When your Real Estate Agent is showing your home to potential clients, it might be a good idea for you to get out and do some of those errands you’ve been putting off. Many buyers feel very uncomfortable viewing the home while the owner is lurking in the shadows.
Seller Tip #10 – Let There Be Light!
It’s a good idea to go spend a few dollars and pick up a couple packs of 100 watt light bulbs at the store. They will go a long way toward making your home look light and bright. We recommend that you spend a couple of extra bucks to get the new “Reveal” type light bulbs. These work on a different wavelength and are very close to the color of real sunlight.
Seller Tip #11 – Clean the Carpets
This one sounds obvious, but you’d be surprised at how many sellers try to save a few bucks and skimp on something like carpet cleaning. Be a smart seller and go the extra mile. It will help your home sell faster, for sure.
Seller Tip #12 – Make Your Yard Larger
Ok, so maybe it’s impossible to actually make your yard larger, but it’s relatively easy to make it look larger than it really is. Trim back overgrown shrubbery, mow the lawn, pull any stray weeds, and cut any dead branches from your trees. All of these items will help the appearance of your yard, as well as making it look bigger.
Seller Tip #13 – Wallpaper
Even if you hate wallpaper, you should be very interested in it when it comes time to sell your home. Some walls are so beat up after all the years of wear and tear, that paint alone might not make a huge difference. In these cases, use wallpaper, which won’t require the re-texturing of your walls that paint might.
Seller Tip #14 – Buy Furniture Now
If you were already planning on buying new furniture for your new home as soon as you moved in, you might want to do it a bit sooner. Buy the furniture now and have it delivered to your old address. New furniture will make the home look like it is younger than it really is.
Seller Tip #15 – More on Furniture
Although we don’t recommend moving out before you sell, it might be a good idea to load up and remove some of the larger pieces of furniture from your home. This will make the rooms look much larger than they actually are.
Seller Tip #16 – Out of the Closet
Remove as many items as possible from your closet and pack them up or temporarily store them elsewhere. Fewer items in a closet will always make the closet (especially a walk-in closet) look more spacious.
Seller Tip #17 – Have a Yard Sale
Now is the perfect time to have a yard sale. Get rid of that old furniture, those crazy knickknacks, and more by holding a yard sale. This will make your move much easier, because, well…there will be less to move.
Seller Tip #18 – The Garage
If you can afford it, buy a can of paint meant for garage floors and paint the garage. Make sure you clean the garage first, as well as spray and clean the floor thoroughly before getting started. A garage will look newer if the floors are a lighter color. If you have stains to remove, use our previous tip. Drain cleaner can go a long way toward getting rid of unwanted stains…
Seller Tip #19 – Make a List and Check it Twice
Your Real Estate Agent could call at any time with a prospect that wants to see the home NOW. So, be prepared and make a list which you can use to remind you of what needs to be done before buyers view the home. If you are in a hot market and have a lot of traffic, this could come in quite handy!
Seller Tip #20 – Water the Lawn
Yes, we are serious. You should turn on the sprinklers right before any prospects arrive. This will make your yard smell and look great. Green grass shimmers under the sun when it has just been freshly watered.
Seller Tip #21 – More on Plants
Buy a few potted plants and place them around your house. These plants not only help freshen the air, but they can also make your home look better too. Green is the best. Studies have show that the human eye is soothed by the colors green and blue. You want people to feel relaxed and at home when they are previewing your house and this is one way to do that.
Seller Tip #22 – Nix the knickknacks
Many times, if you have too much “personal” memorabilia lying around, it can make the potential buyer feel as if they are intruding into someone else’s home and personal life. Avoid this by removing family photos, and personal items that have are clearly part of some special memory.
Seller Tip #23 – Ask for a Second Opinion
Don’t rely solely upon yourself to decide if your home is ready to sell. Invite some friends over and have them tour your home. They might be able to spot something you’ve missed. If anything, your Real Estate Agent should be fairly comfortable pointing out problem areas. They want the home to sell just as badly as you do!
Seller Tip #24 – Dear John
Well…even if you don’t know the buyer’s name, it’s still quite helpful to create a personal thank you letter. Put it on nice stationary, and sign your name with blue, felt-tipped pen, and place it in an attractive envelope. In the letter, mention your friendly neighbors, good schools and of course, the high points of your property. Mention in the letter that you regret having to leave such a wonderful home, but that your housing needs have “changed”. TIP! – Don’t give away any other information about why you are moving. Only mention that your housing needs have “changed”.
Seller Tip #25 – Temporarily Relocate Your Pooch
If you have a furry-friend living with you, it is a very good idea to take it out on a walk when a potential buyer is viewing your home. Better yet, during the selling process, you might have your dog or cat stay with a friend or relative. Many people are allergic to animals. Even more are afraid or annoyed by a dog’s bark (no matter how big or small the dog is). Just because you love animals doesn’t mean that your potential buyer will. So play it safe and temporarily relocate your pooch…