If you plan to sell your home, I have good news for you: You can increase your chances of quickly receiving an acceptable purchase offer. I’m not suggesting major financial investments or hugely time-consuming tasks. Take these simple steps that you can handle on your own, and they will pay off.
Give it a good scrub
I can’t tell you how many homes for sale I’ve visited that were just plain filthy; food-stained walls, muddy carpets, dried dog slobber on the windows. If ever there was a time to roll up your sleeves and clean house, this is it. You don’t want buyers to focus on the cobwebs in the light fixtures or the red-wine stains on your kitchen counter; you want all their attention directed to the positive aspects of your home and yard.
Bring a sparkle and shine to windows, mirrors, windowsills, light fixtures- anything that hasn’t seen a cleaning cloth in far too long. If you prefer to hire someone to do a thorough scrub-down on your house, some cleaning companies offer a special service to get a property ready for sale (make-ready).
Clean isn’t the same as tidy
Cleaning dust and dirt is half the battle; the next step is to get a handle on mess and clutter. The piles of clothes on the floor and stack of dishes in the sink aren’t working in your favor. If you’re running out of time before you leave your house for the day or need to tidy up quickly before a buyer comes to view your home, you can improvise a bit. Stuff the clothes into your clothes dryer or under the bed. Other last-minute places to stash a mess: your car, a box or garbage bag that you then place in the garage, or dresser drawers. The closet is not the best place to stuff your mess, since buyers often take a peek to gauge the amount of closet space.
Get out in the yard
You have no doubt heard the phrase curb appeal. Your home’s attractiveness from the street comes in part from its design and overall condition, but your yard also goes a long way toward making a first impression. Keep the yard mowed, edge the driveway and sidewalks, and remove all dead plants and tree limbs. Get rid of weeds, brush piles and old toys while you’re at it. For just a little money, you can plant attractive greenery and flowers in beds and in pots near the entrance. Fresh mulch adds a “pop” without looking staged.
Make a grand entrance
A fresh coat of paint on the front door takes very little time but makes a big difference. Also, don’t neglect the impression buyers get when they walk into your home. A fresh bouquet of flowers or another attractive focal point in your entryway sets the right tone from the get go.
The disappearing dog
I know you love your pets, but you need to minimize their presence. That means eliminating pet odors, stains, and pet hair. Be certain your loved ones are contained in some way (or off the property) when buyers will be in the home.
Take care of the small stuff
Look around your house from a buyer’s point of view. Are there items you’ve leaned to live with that might turn off a prospective owner? Now is the time to fix leaky faucets, touch up paint, cracks, caulk and grout, and other minor things that will add up on a buyer’s list of cons. Small problems can be enough to dissuade someone from buying your home; those small items may leave the impression that bigger problems are lurking just under the surface.
Texas Realtors can help
Of course, there are larger tasks you should consider when preparing your home for sale that will help you maximize interest and sales offers. Your Texas Realtor can help you assess what repairs and changes can give you the best opportunity to meet your goals when putting your house on the market. For more on selling your home, I invite you to visit ArlingtonRealtor.com.