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Getting Ready to Sell Your Home? Here’s the Ultimate Seller’s Checklist

Are you making plans to sell your house? If you are like most people than there are a few things you might have to consider before you put up the for sale sign.

It’s all about the details, which can highlight areas of you home to attract a buyer quickly. So, before taking the final step and putting your house on the market, here is a checklist that can help you expedite the process of selling your home – not to mention getting better offers in the process.

Are you ready to make the commitment and give yourself the best chance of getting the most money for your home and potentially a fast sell? Let’s get started:

1. Find a great real estate agent
Some people think bypassing a real estate agent and selling your home yourself to pocket a little more money is a good strategy. It can be tempting, especially in a hot market, but my experience as a Realtor® says resist the urge. Getting the right agent is very important, it saves you time and money and gives you access to marketing opportunities you might not have otherwise. In the long run, it’s the right move.

2. Consider your curb appeal
Making sure your home has significant “wow” factor is a must, and will make the difference the second a buyer pulls up to your house. For better or worse, buyers do tend to judge a book by its cover and most people are not visual and cannot envision or want to invest in a “remodel”. Making a few changes, like adding plants with colorful flowers and repainting your front door, the home’s first impression can seal the deal in some cases.

3. Declutter living areas
Less is definitely more when it comes to getting your house ready to show.

Clear your counters, windowsills, tables, and all other visible areas. Then tackle behind closed doors: closets, drawers, and cupboards—since virtually nothing is off-limits for curious buyers. And if your house is overflowing with “stuff”, it doesn’t give the buyer the ability to “see” ample space for their own belongings.

Take the excess and donate to a local charity or pack it up and put it in storage. The bonus? Taking care of this now means you have one less chore to do when it’s actually time to move.

4. Depersonalize your space
You want to have the buyers visualize themselves (and their family) living in the property. That includes personal items and family photos, as well as bold artwork or furniture that might make your home less appealing. The goal is to create a blank canvas the house hunters can project their own visions of living there, and loving it.

5. Repaint walls to neutral tones
You might love that orange accent wall, but if it’s your potential buyer’s least favorite color, that could be a big turnoff. Turn to lighter more neutral colors that will brighten and open up the space.

6. Touch up any scuff marks
Even if you’re not doing a full-on repainting project, pay special attention to scrubbing and then touching up baseboards, walls, and doors to make the house sparkle and well look cared-for.

7. Fix any loose handles
Sure it’s a small thing, but you’d be surprised by the negative effect a loose handle or missing lightbulb can have on a buyer. It can make them stop and think, ‘What else is could be broken here?’”

8. Add some plants
Plants create a more welcoming environment. You might also want to consider a bouquet of fresh flowers or bowl of fruit on the kitchen counter or table.

9. Conduct a smell test
Foul odors, even slight ones, can be a deal breaker, and the problem is that you might not even notice them. Use an inviting and unbiased third party in to try to detect any pet smells or lingering odors from your kitchen.

If the smells are pervasive, you might need to do some deep cleaning, because many buyers are on to your “masking techniques” such as candles or plug-in room deodorizers are a big NO-NO!

10. Clean, clean, clean
And then clean some more. You want your property to look spotless. Take special care with the bathroom, making sure the tile, counters, shower, and floors shine.

11. Consider staging
Does your house scream outdated? Nothing invigorates a house like some new furnishings or even just a perfectly chosen mirror to make it look bigger. The key is getting your home staged professionally. Home stagers will evaluate this in your house and determine what elements might raise the bar. They might recommend you buy or rent some items, or they might just reorganize your knickknacks and bookshelves in a whole new way.

Congratulations, you are now ready to put your home on the market and I am ready to represent you.

James Weekley
310.402.0901