Most Important Ways to Prepare Your Home Prior to Listing (Infographic)

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There are many things to do before listing your house on the market! Prepare your home by completing these items so that potential buyers love your house.

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Priority Items:

If you have a small amount of time, these are the items that you should do at the very least before listing your home for sale.

  1. Pick Up Trash
    1. Go around your home with a trash bag and throw away anything that doesn’t belong. You may be surprised at how much trash you have in the house!
  2. Hide Away Clutter
    1. You don’t need to fully organize your home, but it is best to do all that you can to hide the clutter. Use all the space inside closets and cupboards to hide items during a showing. Keep a trash bag nearby while decluttering, too!
  3. Clean It Up
    1. Deep clean your home now before you list it to make it easier to quickly tidy up before a showing. Clean room by room to make it less overwhelming, or hire a cleaning service to deep clean for you.
  4. Clear Kitchen Counters
    1. Draw attention to your kitchen counters by clearing them away so buyers can see them. It’s okay to leave out a mixer or a vase, but most of the counter should be clear.
  5. Dust Away Cobwebs
    1. Not only does dusting make your home cleaner, but it also rids your home of cobwebs that could indicate neglect.
  6. Take Down Personalized Decorations
    1. Make your home less personalized by putting all family photos, monograms, and family name items away. This makes your home more appealing to potential buyers to envision themselves living in the house in the future.
  7. Give Every Room a Purpose
    1. Make it easy for buyers to step into a space and know exactly what it is used for. A spare bedroom could become an office, or an extra area could become a home gym.

Make Small Changes:

  1. Fix the Easy Things
    1. Now is the time to fix that squeaky hinge, repair a broken window, and replace any light bulbs. While these jobs don’t take much time, they are essential in showing your house to buyers.
  2. Paint Wild Walls a Neutral Color
    1. It may put some buyers off if they can’t get past a wild wall color (especially in a kid’s bedroom). Paint over any walls that are too drastic with a neutral color to appeal to more buyers.
  3. Replace Broken Blinds
    1. Ensure that everything within the home is in working order, including the window blinds. Replace any blinds that are an eyesore or remove them at the very least.
  4. Remember Outdoor Areas
    1. Buyers want to see outdoor living spaces that are clean and staged. Raking leaves, pulling weeds, and sprucing up a porch or patio can improve the overall feel of a home.

 Before a Showing:

  1. Create a Checklist
    1. Make picking up the house easier with a checklist before every showing. Keep the checklist near the cleaning supplies for easy access and to ensure that you don’t forget anything.
  2. Put Laundry Away
    1. Any family always has some kind of laundry hanging around. Make sure that your home is ready for the market by keeping up on laundry and putting clean clothes away into dressers or in closets.
  3. Add Some Fragrance
    1. Create a warm and welcoming environment by investing in some new scents for the home. Melting wax and spraying bathrooms before a showing can greatly increase the home’s appeal (and cover up any lurking smells).
  4. Keep Windows Clean
    1. Wash both the inside and outside of windows and glass doors so that buyers can easily see outside. This could make the house seem larger, and buyers can envision themselves using the outdoor living space.
  5. Make Bathrooms a Sanctuary
    1. Stage every bathroom with fluffy towels, a candle, and a clean scent. Make each bathroom inviting, comfortable, and showcase extra features like a soaking tub, extra-large shower, and vanity areas.
  6. Hide Pet Items
    1. While you may love your dog or cat, a new buyer may be put off by the presence of a pet. Hide away litter boxes, food dishes, pet beds, and clean up any pet hair on the couch. Take any pets with you before a showing so that they aren’t an issue.

If Your Budget Allows:

  1. Rent a Storage Unit
    1. Help stage your home by clearing out any extra furniture that makes the house look smaller. Renting a storage unit for a few months allows you to keep the items you want that may not be the best fit to show off the house.
  2. Hire a Staging Company
    1. Consider hiring a staging company that will help you move furniture around for the best impression. Even if you do it yourself, staging the house is a huge part of showing off every inch of the home to future buyers.
  3. Set Up Weekly Cleanings
    1. Keeping your home clean is an important part of selling your home. Hire a cleaning company to drop by every week to do the deep cleaning items that take more time.

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