Getting Your Home in Top Selling Condition
- Drive up to your home and look at it from afar. Look at it through the eyes of buyers.
- Check the shingles – repair or replace damaged shingles.
- Clean and repair the gutters.
- Clean and repair the HVAC units.
- Repair broken windows and shutters. Replace torn screens. Make sure frames and seams have solid caulking.
- Repair or replace door knobs, doorbell and light fixtures if necessary.
- Remove all toys, equipment and litter.
- Remove cobwebs and nests.
- Remove mildew, moss and stains from the side of your home – use bleach. Remove stains from the walkways and driveway – use concrete cleanser and/or kitty litter.
- Repair and clean patio furniture and deck area. Remove anything that can’t be repaired.
- Make sure the spa and pool sparkle.
- Go around and touch up the exterior of your home with putty and paint.
- Clean or paint the front door and mailbox.
- Hose off the exterior of your home, especially around entrances. Use siding cleanser.
- Wash the windows.
- Wash your garbage can and put it in a place where it’s not the first thing potential buyers see when they drive up.
- Stack the woodpile neatly.
- Mow the lawn.
- Trim the trees and shrubs.
- Weed the gardens.
- Add colorful plants or foliage to fill in bare spots.
- Edge the gardens and walkways.
- Sweep the walkways and driveway.
- Replace doormats that are worn and torn.
- Shine brass hardware on the doors and light fixtures. Polish stained wood doors and trim.
- Drive up to your home again and look at it from the eyes of a potential buyer. Walk into your home as a potential buyer. Determine what kind of impression the walkways and entrances now make.
- Walk through your home. Store, give away, throw, or donate anything that you won’t need until after the move; e.g. furniture, knick-knacks, clothing, toys, equipment, appliances, worn rugs, papers, books, cosmetics, jewelry, games, CDs, etc.
- Walk through your home again, this time with some tools. Fix loose door knobs, cracked molding, leaky faucets. Remove cob webs.
- Replace worn or broken door knobs, cabinet fixtures, light fixtures, light switches, outlet plates, faucets and vent covers.
- Clean the fireplace.
- Clean the vents.
- Clean and organize your closets. Add extra space by storing or giving away items.
- Add a fresh coat of paint in light, neutral colors.
- Shampoo the carpet. Replace if necessary. Clean and wax the floors.
- Vacuum the window blinds, shades and drapes. Wash or dry clean curtains. Wash all the windows, frames and sills.
- Add dishes of potpourri.
- Remove all valuables, such as jewelry, artwork, knick-knacks, medications, cash, coin collections and so on.
- Open all the window shades to create a spacious and bright look.
- Put pet supplies and dishes in a place where they are not the first thing potential buyers see or smell when they walk into a room.
Living Room and Family Room
- Make these rooms spacious and inviting.
- Discard or repair chipped furniture. Replace worn rugs and pillows.
- Remove magazines, games, toys and so on.
- Make sure the entertainment center sparkles.
- Vacuum upholstery, drapes, pillows, etc.
- Clean out your china cabinet. Polish any visible silver.
- Put a lovely centerpiece on the table – treat yourself to fresh flowers. Set the table for a formal dinner to help potential buyers imagine entertaining there.
- Arrange furniture to create a spacious look
- Remove games, toys, magazines, cosmetics, jewelry – especially on the nightstands.
- Replace bedspreads, quilts and pillow shams if they are worn or faded.
- Remove rust and mildew stains.
- Wash or replace shower curtains.
- Make sure everything sparkles – including grout.
- Replace worn rugs and towels.
- Make sure all appliances work.
- Throw or eat the foods that you’ve been storing for so long.
- Clean the inside of the refrigerator, stove and cabinets. Make sure everything is organized to create a spacious look.
- If your stove has electric burners, purchase new drip pans for each burner. Wash removable knobs in your dishwasher.
- Polish the cabinets with furniture oil.
- Make sure appliances, countertops and the sink sparkle. Install new faucets if necessary.
Attic, Basement, and Garage
- Get rid of unnecessary items. Store or pack items you won’t need until after the move.
- Organize everything to create more floor space and make inspections easy. Put things on shelves or in matching boxes.
- Provide bright lighting.
- Clean all equipment and vents. Replace filters. Fix any insulation that might be showing.
- Take care of stale or musty odors. Open the windows, dust and wash the walls and floors, purchase room deodorizers.
When It’s Time to Show
- Make sure your property folder is out in the open. It should contain utility bills, an MLS profile, your Seller’s Disclosure, extra property flyers and extra business cards.
- Do a quick clean and vacuum. Air out your house. Dispose all trash.
- Put pets outside if it’s safe to do so.
- Turn on a radio with peaceful music.
Understanding Real Estate Showings
- If our house is not being shown, it means the agents think our price its too high for that area.
Recommendation: A significant price adjustment.
- If our house is being shown, but we are not getting any offers, it means Buyers are finding nicer homes for the money.
Recommendation: A moderate price adjustment.
- If our house is in the running, but Buyers purchase another home, or if Buyers view the house a second time, but buy something else, it means that we are close.
Recommendation: A minor price adjustment.
According to the National Association of REALTORS®,
if our house is priced correctly, we should get one offer for every 10 showings.