As the spring market approaches in the Oswegoland area, potential sellers thoughts should be shifting to how to get their homes ready for their first showing. Now that you have made the decision to show your home you need to shift your perspective about "your home". Once it's on the market it is no longer "your home" its a product, a product that needs to be showcased in the best possible way. Your agent will take care of marketing your home, you need to take responsibility on showcasing your homes best features in the best possible light!
When someone decides to sell their car they normally go and have it detailed - so before signing a listing agreement start the process and get your home detailed!
1. DeClutter! - Since you will be moving anyway start packing away all those things that you don't use on a daily basis.
A. Counter tops - Only put out the minimum on your kitchen counters even if used daily - Put the rest away in
cabinets and remainder pack away. The less the better! Plenty of design shows/magazines for ideas. Think
model home. Same in the bathrooms - remove everything but the essentials - less is best!
B. Closets - Remove and pack away previous season clothes, fat clothes, thin clothes, sentimental clothes.
Donate what you have not used in a year. Special occasion clothes only stay if you have event within 3 months.
C. Basement - Clear all clutter - if you can't rent a storage space put all packed boxes in the corner furtherst from
stairs and separate from rest of basement with temporary partitions.
D. Garage - Get rid of junk, clutter and rearrange what's left with hooks, shelving, cabinets. Have a Garage Sale and make some money to organize the garage! Actually put your cars in the garage even if its for the first time!
2. Clean, Clean and Clean - If your housekeeping leaves a lot to be desired hire a professional crew to do a deep cleaning and maintain that level of clean until your home sells! Think luxury hotel clean! When a showing is scheduled make sure no dirty dishes in sink, dishwasher or anywhere in house. Bribe your children to keep their rooms clean - whatever it takes your job is to make sure your home shines! Unfortunately, you may be judged based on how clean your home and your housekeeping may turn off a potential buyer. Watching HGTV gives everyone a higher expectation level when searching for a home. Clean window sills, trim, under beds. Use the white glove test to make sure everything passes inspection. It will be worth it!
A. Hire a handyman to take care of all those "honey do's" that you didn't have time to take care of! Install lightbulbs in all lighting receptacles. Rehang doors that are not working properly, Get rid of squeaks. Steam clean your carpets, refinish your hardwood floors. Rewire any outlets that may need it. Fix any running toilets, Fix the garbage disposal. Fix the slow draining shower, and sinks. You get the point...all those minor things that you lived with new buyers will not be willing to accept and your selling price will suffer because of it.
B. Paint your homes to a neutral palette yet in current colors. Look at design magazines - go to the local Home Depot, Lowes or Menards and get the best paint you can get and have a painting party if you can't afford to hire professionals. Take a class if you have never done it - a poorly done paint job will only make a bad situation worse.
C. Curb Appeal - Trim your hedges, trim back trees that may block view of front of home. Cut your grass, shovel your walk and driveway. Get the best landscaping advise you can and in the spring and summer pretty flowerpots near entrance and a sparkling clean door and fresh hardware will make a great impression. If you have a screen door and it is looking a bit worn get it replaced. Remember that the front door and the front yard are the first things potential buyers will see so make that impression a good one!
3. Show Time - On showing day remember to make sure there is no clutter, dirty dishes, dirty clothes. All beds are made. Surfaces are dust free. No smells - don't use air feshner's unless they are very subtle. Otherwise buyers may think you are trying to mask a smell. Make sure any pets are crated or out of home during showing times. Be as flexible as possible because sometimes when there are a lot of homes being shown buyers may run 15-30 minutes late or early.
This is just an overview of things you need to do before showing your home. You don't have to have the most expensive furnishings to impress - just a clean, well arranged home, with the least amounts of issues for the new buyer to deal with. Remember your home is your product which you and your agent must market in its best light. You have to be partners with your agent to make each showing "Show Time"