How to prepare your home to sell quickly

preparing your home to sell

How to prepare your house to sell

According to realtor.com, the spring and summer months tend to be the best time to sell your home. This is especially true here in the Northeastern United States, where it is easier to move when the weather is warmer and the days seem longer.

It is important to also keep in mind that buyers with children will prefer to move during the summer break from school, when they will not be distracted with having to transition during the school year. Moving during the summer allows them to get settled in before the new school year begins.

The key to selling your home the most quickly and for the most money is to be prepared. In this article, I’ve provided some tips for how you can make sure you’re prepared for the whole process.

1. Start as soon as you can downsizing your belongings. It doesn’t make sense to pay to move things that you don’t want anymore or that won’t fit in your new home. It’s important to keep in mind that clutter can give the impression to prospective buyers that there isn’t enough storage space in the home. Make sure that during the downsizing process you work on eliminating clutter.

Start by eliminating clutter

Start by eliminating clutter

2. Pack as you go. As you downsize your belongings, pack anything that you will not be using in the next three months. Store the packed boxes in a designated area of the basement or garage. It’s okay if the buyers see them, as long as they are neatly stacked. This makes them realize that you are serious about selling and moving out as fast as possible.

3. Make any repairs that you have been putting off. If you or your loved one refuse to do anymore to your home because you “don’t want to dump anymore money into it,” ask yourselves these questions:

  • Does the faulty item give the impression that the home hasn’t been well taken care of?
  • Will you have to lower the price by more than the cost of the repair?
  • Is it going to be the first thing buyers see?

If you answered yes to any of these, then fix it!

4. First impressions count. Although we walk into our homes on a daily basis, we tend to have blinders on. Those things that bother us about our homes, like the inefficient mudroom or lack thereof, the dead shrubs or the outdated paint color are the first things buyers will notice. Like your mother always said, “First impressions mean everything!” You don’t want them to have a bad taste in their mouths just as soon as they walk in the door.

A clean house is much more likely to sell

A clean house is much more likely to sell

5. Clean, clean, clean! I cannot stress this enough. Clean your home from top to bottom or hire a good cleaning service. Wash the walls, windows, rugs — everything! Having a clean home gives the impression that you love your home and have taken good care of it. It makes your home look brighter.

6. Set the stage. Staging your home to show it’s best qualities should be high on your priority list when selling your home. It can play a huge role in selling your home faster and for more money. Disassociate, Declutter and Depersonalize.

7. Pare down on furnishings. Having the right amount of furniture in the right place will make your home seem larger. Creating a “homey” feel that will relax buyers making them feel like they could live there too. If you are not sure how to do this, call in an expert. We can help!

8. Update your décor. Look around at the décor of your home. Have you updated it in the past five years? Do you have a mishmash of styles going on? Do a little research to see what is trending. Check out HGTV, visit your local stores or call a local Home Stager like us and set up an in-home consultation. The consultation may run around $150-300, depending on the size of your home and the extent of the advice you are looking for. It’s important to remember that you are trying to make a home that will appeal to as many potential buyers as possible.

Ask a neighbor to briefly pet-sit

Ask a neighbor to briefly pet-sit

9. Remove evidence of pets. Yes, we all love our pets, but potential buyers may not be fans of cats, dogs, or your pet boa constrictor! If at all possible, remove your pet from your home on the days of showings or during open houses. Ask a neighbor if you could leave your pet in safe area of their home while you are showing your house to potential buyers.

10. Clear the air. This may be hard to hear but you need to be very aware of the way your home smells. However, this may often be hard for us to do because we are in our homes on a regular basis and we get used to the odors we live with. The last thing you want to have happen is for a buyer to fall in love with your home from the great photos they see online of your beautifully staged home, only to be turned off by the strong odor of cat urine, cigarette smoke or the smell of last night’s dinner. Ask a friend or family member that doesn’t live in the home, for a brutally honest opinion of your home’s smell. I also don’t recommend using strongly scented air fresheners or candles to cover smells up, as they can be overwhelming to some buyers. It’s best to remove the source of the odor and do a deep cleaning.

11. Last but not least, relax. If you follow all of these tips or hire a Home Stager like Organized by Sharon, work with a trusted Realtor, and price your home realistically, you will set yourself up to sell your home for top dollar and as quickly as possible… So, be ready to move! But in the meantime, enjoy the ambiance of your clean, clutter-free, staged home.

If you’re in need of home staging or downsizing services, contact me today at 518-791-5560. As a professional organizer in Upstate NY with years of experience helping people in Saratoga, Glens Falls, Wilton, Clifton Park and beyond with getting organized, downsizing, eliminating clutter and staging their home, I’ve got the skills and expertise necessary to help you handle any job.

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