Are you thinking of selling your home? If so, you have most likely chosen a realtor, gone over a listing price, and thought of where you want to move to once you’ve sold. But, have you considered the competition? Today, there are tons of homes on the market to choose from. Buyers can view many homes in one day, virtually seeing blocks worth of houses. Will yours get lost in the crowd or stand out amongst the rest? If possible, check out similar homes that are also on the market. Compare what they have to what you have, including listing price, square footage, bedrooms, etc. Most importantly, see how their house is displayed. Meaning, was it clean or a mess? Were you initially impressed at the set up or let down once you walked in? Now think of how you want your house to look and what you can do to get it ready to make that great first impression.
Home staging is a technique that many realtors and decorating professionals suggest when you put your house on the market. It is more than simply cleaning up or doing small repairs. Use these tips to not only save you money, but to maximize your profits by making your home be the one that gets sold. Start on the outside. Look over the front of your house and weed the garden, add inexpensive flowers or potted plants near the front door, and mow the lawn. Remember that while the realtor is getting your house key out and unlocking the front door, your potential buyers will be looking around. On the inside of your house pack away personal items, like family photos, children’s artwork off of the front of the refrigerator, and knick knacks. You aren’t trying to display your personality or show off your belongings. You want to showcase the house and its potential, not impress buyers on who you are. Replace family photos with simple cut outs from magazines of flowers or art in the same frames. Clean out your closets by packing up clothing and items you won’t need in the next few weeks to come. Box up toys and children’s items, too. Not only will this help you when it comes time to moving, since you will already have these things packed up, but it helps not limit their rooms to just “kids rooms”. Let your buyers see the full potential each area has. Wash all linens and if needed, purchase new ones- especially for the Master bedroom. Inexpensive “bed-in-a-bag” linens can transform this space.
Consider getting new curtains or drapes, and hang the curtain rod higher than the window and wider as well. This makes the window space appear larger, and by opening the blinds, it allows natural light to come through. Turn on lights and ceiling fans, eliminate any odors, and stow away any dirty laundry. Don’t forget your garage! Potential buyers look everywhere. Keeping this in mind, don’t overlook your cabinets, drawers, and pantry. Simply organize these areas by cleaning them out, turning cans and other items to face front, and align them neatly. Fold towels in the linen closet. Bathrooms can’t be clean enough! Only hang your prettiest towels on the rods, and don’t leave the damp ones hanging over the shower door. And put the toilet seat covers down! Nothing turns buyers off more than seeing bad habits.
Empty all the trash completely, even if it’s only one or two small things in there. Slip covers for your couches and furniture are not only inexpensive, but make some furniture look brand new and inviting. Maximize space by rearranging furniture if needed, or removing some pieces. Large China cabinets take up a lot of space and can be moved into storage for now. Finally, if you are having an Open House, play relaxing classical music softly throughout the home. This is an old, yet still quite popular trick that many new home builders use for their model homes. Let your realtor take over during this time, and leave the property while the Open House is going on. By the end of the day when you return, you may get the good news of receiving an offer!