Try to see your home with a fresh perspective and arrange each room to bring out its best attributes, including:
Put Your Home in the Best Possible Light
- “How we live in a home and how we sell a home are often 2 different things.”
- Open draperies and curtains to let the light in during the showing
- Arrange all your rooms neatly and remove excess furniture
- Keep fresh, clean towels in the bathroom
- Use candles or air fresheners to make the room smell pleasant
– Strategically lighting your unit, even during daytime showings, can create a cozy mood and highlight positive attributes of each room, so:
Inside the Home
- Avoid the use of overhead lighting (except recessed lighting with dimmer controls) that makes rooms look washed out and lifeless.
- Be creative and arrange lamps to help smaller rooms seem larger, and large rooms seem more intimate.
- Use lighting to highlight the “living areas” of your home, such as a pair of chairs such as a pair of chairs near a fireplace, or a table in a breakfast area.
Clear all unnecessary objects from furniture throughout the home. Keep decorative objects on the furniture restricted to groups of 1, 3, or 5 items.
Clear all unnecessary objects from the kitchen countertops. If it hasn’t been used for three months…put it away! Clear refrigerator fronts of messages, pictures, etc. (A sparse kitchen helps the buyer mentally move their own things into your kitchen.)
In the bathroom, remove any unnecessary items from countertops, tubs, shower stalls and commode tops. Keep only your most needed cosmetics, brushes, perfumes, etc., in one small group on the counter. Coordinate towels to one or two colors only.
Rearrange or remove some of the furniture if necessary. As owners, many times we have too much furniture in a room. This is wonderful for our personal enjoyment, but when it comes to selling, we need to thin out as much as possible to make rooms appear larger.
Take down, or rearrange certain pictures or object on walls, personal family photos often should be removed. Patch and paint if necessary.
Review your property inside room by room. Paint any room needing paint, clean carpets or drapes that need it, clean windows.
Leave on certain lights during the day. (I’ll show you which ones). During “showings” turn on all lights and lamps.
Occasionally you will receive a call to schedule a showing to take place within the next few minutes. The following is a checklist for this type of panic:
- Sound - Turn off the television and tune the radio (low volume) to a soft rock, middle of the road or classic rock station.
- Sight - Turn on every light in the home (day or night) and open every drape and blind (day time only).
- Odors - Heat some frozen pastry slowly in the oven or heat a pan on the stove and then drop in a few drops of vanilla.
- Kitchen - Wipe kitchen counters, place dirty dishes in dishwasher.
- Bathrooms - Wipe counters, flush and close toilets.
- Living/Family Rooms - Hide magazines, newspapers, and games; remove clutter.
- Bedrooms - Straighten beds. Hide clutter under bed (not in closet).
- Exterior - Put away toys and clutter. Keep walk clear.
- Children & Pets - They are a distraction, so send them outside.
- Good-bye - Sorry, but this is the single most important thing you can do in a showing to help sell your home! Even if the showing agent insists that it is okay to stay, you must leave. Buyers must get emotionally committed to your property to buy it and they cannot become emotional about “their new home” if you, the current owners, are “hanging around”. Please, at the very least, go into the backyard. Even better, go to the store or run an errand.
In General – Try to look at your home “through the buyer’s eyes” as though you’ve never seen it or been there before. Any time or money spent on these items will bring you back more money in return, and hopefully a faster sale.