Were you aware that homes that are staged sell up to 10% higher and as much as 60% faster than homes that are not staged? It is true. So I have compiled a list of tried and true ways to help you get your home ready before you list it.
1. It Is All About Emotion
Most buyers know within 30 seconds of seeing the home if it is "the One". So make sure your home is memorable. Is your home warm and welcoming, is your curb appeal living up to its potential? Make your home inviting and those buyers will want to see the rest of it!
You are planning to move, so why not start now? Packing up all the extra clutter and personal items will make a huge difference. You want your buyer to be able to envision themselves in the home and they won't be able to do that with you and your family greeting them from every wall and surface. So remove those knick-knacks and take the kids art off the fridge and you are on your way to a clean slate.
3 Clean, Clean, Clean it up!
If a buyer sees that they will have to do cleaning and fixing they are likely to off less money for your home. Take a look around- does the tub need new caulk? Are the carpets and rugs as clean (and clean smelling) as they could be? Be sure to look at your home with a critical eye, because you can be sure your buyer will be. A clean home tells your buyer it is loved and you want them to love it too. Need more cleaning done than you think you can handle? Investing in a cleaning service is a good idea.
4. Lighten Up
Pull open the curtains and raise those blinds. Let the sunshine in! Buyers do not want to walk into a dark home. While you may value your privacy, you want your buyer to see a warm and inviting space. So before you have a showing or an open house be sure to turn on all the lights and open those curtains.
5. Neutral is Nice
When was the last time you painted your walls? Has it been years? Are they clean? Are they neutral, are they up to date. A neutral wall, not necessarily a white wall, can make all the difference. While you may adore your brightly colored walls, you want your buyer to be able to see their décor inside the home. Making sure your walls and woodwork are painted and clean can go along way towards more $$$.
6. Store it away
Many times we have more furniture that we truly need. If it is not essential or absolutely necessary, store it. If the rooms are open, it will look large and make the most of your square footage. Square footage is $Money$ in the real estate market my friends! Kids often struggle keeping their rooms clean and this will be especially difficult during showings. Have them pick their favorite toys and store them in a special basket, store the rest.
7. Closets Full?
Empty each and every one of your closets and cabinets as much as you can. Out of season clothes can be stored in suitcases or put in storage. You want to make it look as though there will be plenty of room for all your buyers' things. Be sure to pay attention to your built-ins and any other storage areas/space. Remember buyers will open up cabinets and look in the attic- so if they are overfull it is time to box it up and store it or get rid of it. You are moving so ask yourself it these are things you want to take with you. If not donate or throw away.
8. Stage It
Imagine if you will walking into your home and it is set for a dinner party. What does it look like? Is it inviting? Set your dining or kitchen table as though you have guests coming, add fresh flowers, go all the way with the dishes and napkins. You want your buyer to be drawn in. You want them to want to stay.
9. Sniff, Sniff...
Smell is so important. Each home has their own smell. Ask yourself if your home has a good one. You may need to ask a friend to assist you, as we all become nose blind to our own home smells or to those of our pets. It may be time to shampoo the carpets, invest in some room spray or a plug in. A favorite smell good trick is baking cookies or an apple pie. Nothing says home like baked goods!
Do you have pets? Make sure that your fur babies are contained. If you can get them out of the house for open houses and showings, do it. Ask you family, friends or neighbors to watch them if you cannot board them for those times. If it is possible take them with you and definitely do not forget the litter box or the yard. Make sure the litter box is put up and clean and that the yard is free of land mines. You don't want you buyer to be aware of Mr. Whiskers dirty business or accidentally stepping in Fido's droppings and tracking it around.
Know someone thinking about listing, feel free to share these helpful hints! Have tips of your own, leave me a comment!