Getting your house ready to put on the market can seem like an overwhelming task. Simplify the job by tackling one room at a time, with this detailed to-do checklist.
If you are short on time, it’s especially important to remember to prioritize this list. Cleaning, packing up and de-cluttering should be the top priority. You want to make your home look the best it can be – to get the most out of your sale while occurring in the least amount of time. Consulting Aaron J Graves once you have decided to sell – will expedite your process and ensure the best results for you and your family.
EVALUATE EVERY ROOM:
Interested home buyers are going to be critical of your home. More than you can imagine. Most people don’t dust their house top to bottom weekly, but they will notice if yours isn’t. When your home is actively listed for sale, your job is to keep it in show condition until you are successfully “in the contract” to sell.
Consider opening up floor space – by removing excess furniture, de-personalizing, and de-cluttering to help invite prospective home buyers to imagine themselves living in your home. They will feel welcomed and relaxed – hopefully imagining where they might put their own furnishings. Think about your home as no longer yours, think of it as a “show home” once your home is on the market. Try to think about how others would like to see it presented.
CLEAN/REPLACE AS NEEDED:
- Windows, sills and ensure window functionality
- Interior/Exterior paint
- All Doors and kick plates
- Light Switch Covers
- Anything that is broken or stained
DUST, DUST, DUST:
- Ceiling Fans
- HVAC Vents
- Light Fixtures
MAKE IT INVITING:
- Remove any furniture that you could live without
- Rearrange your furniture to best show the size and strengths of each room
- Remove all but a few decorations, books, and pictures
- Organize kid’s areas. Find a home for everything..
- Add lighting to ensure your home is bright
- Decorate your home with flowers while for sale
- Always, Always, Always leave your home for the day in its best look – Showings can happen in a flash
LIVING ROOMS & FAMILY ROOMS:
- Keep furniture to a minimum
- Hide the toys as best as possible – any rooms dedicated for children’s play, organize and minimize
- Arrange pillows and blankets – making the room feel comfortable
- Store remote controls and hide electronic cables, boxes
- Keep dining room table cleaned
- Limit the number of chairs at the table – free from being squeezed together
- Ensure and the chandelier is elevated – preventing from blocking line of sight
- Remove all items for countertops – even everyday items
- Clean, clean, clean. The basic rule of thumb – if you can see it scrub it
- Ensure stove, oven, microwave, and refrigerator are free from stains
- Clear the refrigerator of magnets and notes
- Organize pantry – as well, remove items that are not needed for daily use
- Minimize dishes and cooking supplies as best as possible – make cabinets look spacious
- Repair any loose cabinets, hinges and drawer pulls
- Polish the sink – hide all daily cleaning sponges/towels
- Make all beds daily
- Ensure laundry is put away
- Minimize clothes in closets – make closets look spacious
- Keep closets and drawers closed
- De-personalize each bedroom
- Clear off bedside tables
- Repair any damages
- Keep floors cleared of clutter and clean regularly
- Remove all clothing daily – clean or dirty
- Keep all surfaces clean and clear
- Ensure lighting is bright
- Hide all cleaning supplies
- Clean and clear all surfaces
- Keep only clean unused towels hanging
- Coordinate all linens appropriately – fold each in coordination
- Remove unnecessary items from shower and tubs
- Scrub away any moldy stains
- Replace caulking – bleach grout when appropriate
- Replace all shower curtains
- Organize and minimize vanity drawers and linen closets
- Keep toilet lids closed when leaving for the day
- Hide garbage cans and cleaning supplies
- Replace any rotten wood on the exterior
- Repaint exterior trim if needed
- Paint front door if needed
- Pressure wash any dirty or stained areas – including walkways and driveways
- Re-stain decking if needed
- Wash all windows including the sills
- Use outdoor furniture to show depth and other use of space
- Sweep all walkways, porches, patios, and decks daily
- Walk around your house and view it objectively from angles a buyer may view it from
- Clean and sweep out the garage
- Keep storage neat and organized
- Repaint if necessary
- Remove seasonal items not needed
- Rent a temporary storage unit if needed to empathize the potential space available to a buyer
- Prune back bushes and plants to symmetrical size and shapes
- Ensure plants are not touching the house or blocking any windows
- Weed all mulch beds
- Edge each mulch bed to create a clean and crisp look
- Add fresh mulch after all trimmings have occurred
- Fertilize the yard well before listing and pictures
- Mow the lawn frequently
- Add seasonal flowers in landscaping to add color
REPAINT THE WALLS TO NEUTRAL COLORS:
You may love the bright yellow accent wall, but if it is the least favorite color of your prospective buyer that could become a deal-breaker.
You should be pretty secure with a neutral color because it’s uncommon for anyone to dislike it, but the other advantage is that a neutral color scheme will help the buyer to see what the walls could look like with their color choice.
It is the responsibility of the seller to help buyers imagine themselves inside the home. If they don’t feel right at home, they are likely to explore other options in the market.
RETOUCH ANY SCUFF MARKS ON THE WALL:
Even if you don’t do a complete-on repainting job, pay close attention to cleaning and then touching baseboards, walls, and doors to make the house sparkle and look carefully.
Selling just about any home can be challenging, but it can be legitimately difficult to sell your home with lots of little issues and minor maintenance needs. Once buyers step into an open house, or go on a home tour, they want to find love with the property, not adding to their must-do list a bunch of little fixes.
To attract buyers (and easily sell your home), repair your home before bringing it onto the market.
You’ll probably see more demand in a home that’s fixed and ready to move in and might even get several offerings.
ADD PLANTS TO YOU HOME DECORATION:
Always remember that adding green is good when designing your house: plants build a cleaner and more inviting atmosphere. You may also want to see the kitchen counter or dining table with a bouquet of flowers or a fruit bowl.
By adding certain extra colors and life to your home decoration, some plants and natural elements will attract buyers, helping you sell your home quickly.
It might start to seem like it will take an eternity to accomplish these items listed above, but getting your home ready before listing it is imperative. You only get one chance to make a first impression. Don’t make the costly mistake of listing your home for sale before you have had time to finish all the details that are needed to allow for a quick and strong sale.
Just remember – the goal is to show prospective home buyers that your home is “the” home. Your house will stand out above the rest because you have gone above what the average home seller would do. All your hard work will pay off when the offers start coming in and you sit down at the closing table.
For more personalized insights on how to prepare your home to sell, contact Aaron J Graves today!