While small upgrades and minor decor replacements may seem like a waste of time when you’re in a hurry to sell your house, one of the biggest mistakes you can make as a seller is listing your home without any advance preparation.
Be sure you prepare your home for sale — and can check off every item on this list — before you even begin to imagine hanging that “For Sale” sign out front.
Clean, clean, clean. Be sure to clean every nook and cranny. Don’t forget overlooked areas, such as dusting the fireplace mantel and ceiling fan blades, polishing appliances and faucets, and washing the windows. If you’ve already moved out or if you’re too busy to do a thorough cleaning, consider hiring a cleaning service.
Clear out the clutter. You want buyers to focus on how awesome your space is, not how messy it looks. Banish that pile of shoes from the entry, that stack of mail from the kitchen table, and anything else that detracts from your home’s gorgeous features.
Repaint the walls in neutral colors. As much as you love your dramatic red dining room, it could turn off a good portion of your potential buyers. So repaint your rooms in neutral tones such as grays, tans, and whites that allow buyers to focus on the spaces, not the color of the walls.
Keep the decor simple. To help buyers imagine themselves in your space, get rid of any statement art or decor that might turn people off. A classic landscape painting? Totally fine. Your zebra-print leather couch? Might want to slip-cover that for showings or rent a storage unit until you’re ready to move it into your new place.
Get rid of personal items. Buyers want to be able to envision themselves in your home, so remove anything overly personal, such as the gallery wall of family photos or your kids’ artwork on the fridge.
Give each room a purpose. That spare room you’ve been using as an office/guest room/dumping ground won’t help sell your home unless you show buyers how they can use it themselves. So pick a use (office, guest room, crafts room) and clearly stage the space to showcase that purpose.
Turn the bathroom into a spa. Create the feel of a relaxing, luxurious bath — for less than $30. Stack a few pretty washcloths tied with ribbon, add some candles and orchids, and buy bathmats and towels in coordinating tones such as light green, blue, and white.
Lower the toilet seat. When it comes to both showing and photographing your home, this little trick can make a surprising difference.