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This Old House - Do-it-Yourself

Seller's Magic: 5 To-Dos Before Listing Your Home

Written by Posted On Wednesday, 14 September 2016 19:40

Selling one's home is one of the most important transactions most people will make. There are lots of things you can do to make it easier and more successful. We've taken the very best tips and put them into the following five magical steps.



Staging isn't just the smell of fresh cookies for a showing. Depersonalize your home by removing anything that reflects your lifestyle. Get rid of beer bottles in the basement stairway, cat litter boxes in the bathroom, ashtrays and cigarettes, anything that might prove a turn-off to a prospective buyer. Pack as if you are moving out next week. Empty closets are more attractive than those that are jammed full of your clothes and treasure. Fill a storage unit if you must to make your house more inviting.


You may also want to repair the dings and scratches you've been ignoring. Replace broken doorknobs, adjust windows that stick. Consider your carpet. Would you want your baby to crawl on it or should you replace it? And speaking of smells... get rid of them through deep cleaning your whole house. Apply small patches of matching oil-based paint in out-of-the-way places like the top of doorjambs as the lingering smell of new paint makes a positive impression.


It may also be a good idea to look outside. Clean and freshen your yard and patio. You may even want to try to remodel or redecorate before selling. You could even look into different backyard patio ideas for inspiration. Colorful plants, a fire pit, a few pieces of comfortable furniture can give the look of an added room, imputing added value to your home. More bang for the buck is always appealing to a buyer.



A buyer will want to have your home inspected. Why not build a prospect's confidence by having an already completed whole-house inspection report in hand? It is not a huge expense and will have the added benefit of preventing you from having condition issues that pop up unexpectedly in the buyer's inspection. You can have repairs made on your own terms and in your own time frame through getting ahead of the game. You will have eliminated the problems that often create delays and negotiations during a sale.



Small touches reap big rewards. Simply putting new switch plates on your walls brings a newer, cleaner look overall. Consider your doorknobs. Are they ugly, old-fashioned, worn past the shine? If you check your local home improvement store you can probably find contractors' packs of knobs or handles, and their affordability may surprise you.



An experienced realtor can provide a lot of information about your specific market and is also an excellent person to view your home impersonally and give you advice on worthwhile fixes to make. has provided a study finding that a listing on line with six or more photos has a two times greater chance of being viewed than one with fewer than six pictures. Since 92% of buyers go to the internet to begin their search for a home, An effective listing is crucial. Be sure to keep an eye on how your realtor presents your home.



Whatever you perceive your home's value to be, get input and comparative sale prices from your realtor. Price it too high and you'll have no traffic. It is better to make it a good value compared to others in the neighborhood and drive the price through competition among buyers.



The time and money you spend before actually listing your home is well worth the expenditure. Taking on some work and thoughtful expense in preparing your home for sale will improve its marketability and set your sale up to be problem free.

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