Apr
29

Getting ready to sell? Cast a critical eye!

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Experience has shown me over and over throughout the years that the vast majority of potential buyers viewing a home will not able to see past clutter, old/worn or dirty carpeting and worn looking walls, or even a slight “neglected” appearance.  While specifics will vary for each property, here is my quick hit-list to be ready for photos and showings:

  1. Make sure front yard is mowed and/or trimmed for a neat looking street view.
  2. This one is big, and too many sellers neglect this small but important focal point:  The front door and hard ware.  If your door is looking faded, or even worse, has a peeling surface, paint it or have it refinished.  Replace the door knob if it’s looking bad.  And make sure the key easily opens the front door.   Add  a cheery wreath or potted plant beside the door.
  3. Remove all, and I mean all, clutter.  Few among us keep clutter effectively at bay.  But when you are readying to sell, this is paramount.  Start tossing, good willing, yard selling, or packing away.   If in doubt – remove it.
  4. My mother always taught me that when I’m dressing for an occasion, remove one piece of  jewelry to ensure against being over-dressed.   In my opinion, this holds true for the furniture in each room (when selling).  To showcase the space as spacious – edit the furniture. Go for a nearly spare look. Less is more.  Again – give away, goodwill it, or store it if you can’t turn it loose.
  5. Stow away most of the knick knacks and photos.  Less is more.  You want an almost bare or lightly “staged” look.
  6. Clean, Clean, and clean some more.  Base boards, mirrors, windows, baths, kitchen, closets.  Sparkle is the key word.
  7. If you note something in disrepair – get it fixed.  You want to market a well cared for home.
  8. Make the most of the rear yard, patio, pool area.   Trim land scaping, repair bedraggled parts, plump up the cushions and make the most of the seating area.  Stage here too.
  9. Coming back through the house after the cleanse and declutter storm:  Add  a pop of color here and there with a few of your pretty things:  A couple handsome items on kitchen counter tops, fresh towels and a pretty something in each bath.
  10. I offer each of my selling clients a staging consultation with my stager.  She walks through the house and yards and makes a detailed list of recommendations.  Your list could be much longer than the above (but if you thoroughly accomplish steps 1-9, you are well on your way), but taking the time and care to carefully primp and preen and (even lightly) “stage”  your property will mean a faster sale and more $$$ to take with you.

Before I leave, a caveat: Steps 1 through 9 are key and critical.  But if it’s been a while since the exterior or  interior has been painted, or your carpet is several years old and showing it’s age, these home improvements are so very important that I will call them the very basics of home selling.

Here is a great article on the topic Get a home ready to sell .

 

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