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Real Estate: Preparing to Sell Your Home

June 17, 2011

 There is a lot of information out there on how to prepare your home for sale. Here is a general list of what a seller should do to sell, sell, sell. I hope it helps you!

 • The #1 item on the list is DECLUTTER! I cannot emphasize this enough. Recognize that you are going to be inconvenienced during the selling process. Buyers want to see the walls, ceiling and floor. Clutter will distract them from seeing this. You are going to have to pack up your things anyway, do it now and get ahead of the curve. To give you an idea, you should have one item on a table or cabinet. Perhaps a vase. Everything else should be removed. No papers around, nothing on the kitchen counters (Nothing!).  Consider having a garage sale and sell some your old things. Or donate them to a second-hand store.

• Remove as much from your closets as you possibly can. Pack now. Take your off-season clothing and pack it up.

• The entire house should be sparkling clean. Top to bottom, inside and out. This is all about perception. The buyer perceives that if you don’t clean the tub, you also don’t take care of the roof, electric, plumbing, etc. Think insanely clean. Recaulk around the tub and shower to give it a fresh look. Wash your windows inside and out. Get rid of cobwebs. If you have light fixtures with plastic covers – -they tend to yellow – replace them. Clean your light switch plates. Heck, have a cleaning party; invite your friends and family. Have pizza afterwards.

• If you have lots of personal photographs around, they should be removed. Let the buyers imagine themselves in your house. Seeing photographs makes a buyer feel like they are ‘invading’ your space.

• Get rid of smells. The most common smell is cat odor, and cigarette smoke. While the house is for sale, clean the litter box daily. Have a “No Smoking Inside” rule. Clean carpets and drapes/curtains. Some people have very sensitive noses and will leave a house before seeing the whole thing due to odors. Ask a friend to be honest and tell you if they smell anything.

• Let’s talk about lighting. Replace every bulb in the house to high wattage bulbs. Open curtains, shades and drapes. Wash windows. When you know the house is being shown, EVERY light in the house should be turned on. Repeat: EVERY light in the house should be turned on. If a room only has one light, get a lamp or two. Turn them on.

• Fix the little things around the house. Loose cabinet doors, Kitchen drawers that don’t close right, tight doors, missing electric plates, torn screens, dripping faucets, broken windows.

• Freshen up the exterior. Cut the grass, rake the leaves, trim the bushes, and edge the walks. Clean the gutters. Remove all debris from the yard. If you have a storage shed, make sure the door opens easily. Make sure the shed is clean and looks nice. Patch or reseal your driveway. Put a pot or two of bright flowers near the entryway.

• Plan on a way to contain your pets during showings. You should have 2-3 different options. 1. Take your pet for a walk / ride while there is a showing. 2. Ask a neighbor to coral your pet. 3. Take your pet to work day.

• There are quite a few television shows about how to sell your home. Watch a few of them to get ideas on what you can do.

Linda Ferrara
Coldwell Banker Enchantment Realty
501 Silver Heights Blvd.
Silver City, NM 88061



One Comment
  1. Nancy permalink

    All excellent tips!

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