How to Prepare Your Home For Sale
Every seller wants their house to sell quickly and for as much money as they can sell it for, but it takes more than hoping your house sells to make it happen. Sprucing up your home and careful planning are important things to get buyers attention and to make high offers on your home.
Step 1 - Disassociate, Declutter, Depersonalize
Living at a home then having to sell it can be hard, all the memories and time you have spent there can be a difficult thing to let go of, but you have to disassociate yourself from your home. You have to tell yourself "This is not my home, it is a product I am selling now". The quicker you can disassociate from your home, the easier it will be to hand over the keys and say goodbye when it is time to leave, which after building a life there can be an emotional thing to do.
Pack up family photos, family heirlooms, and any junk you haven't used in the last few months. You want buyers to walk into the house and imagine themselves living there, with their photos on the walls. Most buyers won't be able to look past personal touches and may be distracted by them. This goes as far as taking all books/knickknacks off shelves and clearing everything off kitchen counters. In the end, it's giving you a head start on packing. Make sure cabinets and closest are as empty as they can be and the things that need to stay, are organized. Buyers love to look around in every door and cabinet, so make sure dishes and boxes are as neat as possible.
Step 2 - Make It Shine
Your home needs to be cleaned better than it's ever been cleaned before, make it shine! It needs to be a deep clean, better than the normal daily cleaning jobs. Scrub the walls, mop the floors, make windows sparkle inside and out. This could take all day so hiring professional cleaners could be a huge help, and will get your house looking fresh. Make sure you focus heavily on the bathroom and kitchen. The kitchen is a huge selling point for buyers. Remember buyers love to open things, so make sure ovens and fridges are not only clean on the outside but on the inside as well. Odors are bad, make sure you do not cook anything that will leave a lingering smell even if you think it smells good others may not. Any other bad odors in the house you want to make sure are gone. Pleasantly scented candles could be a good thing but try not to have any exotic smelling candles, keep it simple. Make sure the exterior is clean also, hiring a landscaper to perfect your yard would be a great investment. If the outside of your house is a mess people may not even look at the inside and move to the next house on their list.
Step 3 - Stage Your Home
You don't need to go buy new furniture to do this, but if you can it will be a good investment. All you need to do is go into every room and try to create space and try not to make things feel cramped. Move furniture around to different spots to have the best visual appeal you can get. If you are investing in furniture have the colors match and make a theme. You don't want to invest in a bunch of furniture just for it to not go together and be meaningless. Don't overbuy, sometimes sellers will buy too much, remember you aren't living there anymore, so keep it simple but elegant. Don't spend a lot of money on unnecessary things.
Step 4 Pictures, Video, Virtual Tour
Talk to your agent about getting a virtual tour of your home. A virtual tour is like having an open house on your property 24/7 days a week. Having high-quality pictures and video to present your house in the best light is critical to receiving a high offer. It is really important that the pictures show how much space is in the room you are taking the picture in, that the pictures are clear, and that there are a lot of pictures. The more pictures the better, but they need to be clear.
Step 5 - Most Important, Price
Above all else, make sure that your home is priced correctly, you don't want to go through all of these steps and your house be overpriced. The price of your house is the first thing buyers look at to consider if they want to find out any more information if the price within the market then they will come to see your house. With information at everyone's fingertips, consumers are more informed than ever. Some consumers are more informed about the real estate market in the area they are interested than the top agents in that area. If you are overpriced they will glance at your listing and nothing more. Being priced correctly is the first form of catching the attention of the consumer.