Prepping to Sell
The term “curb appeal” is thrown around frequently in the housing market, but curb appeal really does matter. If a prospective buyer drives up to your home and they’re turned off by its first impression, they just may drive right off. This isn’t to say all buyers are turned off by weeds, brown grass, and chipped paint, however, you definitely reduce your potential pool of buyers when you don’t address the first impression factor. A little touch-up paint, fertilizer, and landscaping to include fresh flowers can go a long way. I always suggest that my sellers clean and brighten their front door and entry-way and clear away any cob-webs and creepy crawlies as well. I recommend they spend a few dollars and purchase a new welcome mat and maybe even buy a small planter to fill with colorful flowers.
Now that you have them inside your home, you’ll want to take the extra effort to make those minor repairs (and major ones too if you’re able). Tighten the lose cabinet pulls, WD-40 the door hinges, change burned out light bulbs, make sure the burners on the stove light, and fix that dripping faucet. Take a walk through your house with fresh eyes, as if you’re the discriminate buyer, demanding to get your money’s worth. Sloppy door handles and cabinet pulls create an immediate (sometimes sub-conscience) question…Just how well have these sellers maintained and cared for their home? So perhaps you’re not the mechanical type - In that case higher a handy-man; I promise you that the money will be well spent.
Does your house have a clean and pleasant smell? It’s scientifically proven that memory and our other senses are linked. You’ll want to consider this prior to having your agent host an Open House. Try not to make that favorite fish meal, or curry recipe the day before your open house. In fact, now that you know this, make an effort to clean with a citrus type scent and turn on that aromatherapy diffusor you have hidden in the drawer the morning of your open house.
For some, the next area to tackle may be the biggest challenge. Since you live in your home day after day, you may not even notice the clutter that has gathered in the corners and on the flat surfaces, countertops and tables. This one is important - remove the clutter, take down those personal photos, organize your closets and drawers, and move extraneous furniture out. This is one case in which less is definitely more. Overall, decorating should be neutral and minimal and flat surfaces should be cleared. This may seem like an overwhelming task, but honestly, it will be enormously helpful. Once you have that offer in hand and open escrow, you’ll be thankful you took the time on the front end to get lean and mean because you know what comes next…packing and moving!
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