Fully preparing your home for sale can make a considerable difference in the time it takes to sell it. You can help eliminate buyer objections before they arise by making necessary repairs and improvements, some of which are suggested below.
- Start by making a list of all those little (and big) things that need to be repaired or done and do them. If they bother you, they could bother a potential buyer
- Walk through each room and look at it from the eyes of a buyer. What looks messy, dirty, or distracting?
- Thoroughly clean the house from top to bottom. Having it professionally cleaned is a good idea.
- Have the carpets cleaned.
- Wash the windows.
- Make sure all window coverings are clean. Remove or replace them if they are dated.
- Open curtains and shades to show off any nice views and to let in natural light.
- If dated, make sure walls have a fresh coat of paint in a neutral color.
- Replace all burned out light bulbs. If areas of the home are particularly dark, add a lamp or brighter bulb.
- De-bug and clean your light fixtures.
- Take care of any squeaking doors.
- Make sure all door handles are working properly.
- Fix dripping faucets.
- Pack up valuables and prescriptions. You’re going to have people viewing your home when you are not there.
- Pack up family photos, collections, and personal items.
- Make sure the art hung on your walls is properly hung and attractive. Pack up anything that might not appeal to a broad group of people.
- Make sure that any houseplants are healthy and look good. If they do not, get rid of them.
- Fireplace / mantel areas are usually a focal point. Make sure this area is very clean, inviting, and staged.
- If you have a lot of furniture, consider removing some. Too much furniture makes rooms appear smaller.
- Situate furniture into inviting, conversational areas.
- If bookshelves look messy and cluttered, pack up some or all of the books.
- Check smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors to make sure they are in good working order and compliant with local requirements.
- Spruce up your garden and lawn; trim shrubbery and replace dead plants
- Yard and patio should be neat; outdoor furniture should be clean and in good shape
- Clean or paint your front door – remember first impressions last the longest!
- Manicure your front yard; make sure your driveway and entryway are free of clutter
- Check that house numbers, mailbox, and exterior lighting are all in good condition
- Touch up with fresh paint as needed
- Inspect chimney for cracks or earthquake damage
- Repair loose trim, drain pipes, and fencing
- Clean stains and window screens
- Apply fresh paint as needed… think about brightening your interiors with neutral-toned paint
- Clean carpets
- Replace burnt out light bulbs
- Clean the fireplace and remove smoke stains from the wall and mantle
- Clean window coverings
- Replace damaged window blinds
- Sinks, appliances, and counter tops should sparkle; remove any clutter
- Clean the oven, range, and other appliances
- Clean tile and grout; replace if necessary
- Clean mirrors, glass, chrome, and porcelain surfaces
- Replace shower curtain if necessary
- Fix any faucet drips or leaks
- Clean grout and caulking; replace if necessary
- Doors and drawers should open and close easily
- Remove clutter; tidy up shelves and racks
- Shoes and clothes should be neatly arranged
- Remove clutter and tidy up the shelves
- Clean the floor