5 Tips to Prep Your House for Sale
You have decided to Sell your Home, now what do you do???
If the title of this post caught your attention and is an accurate reality for you, you obviously didn’t call me to sell your home, so please stop reading now and call me. If you have someone else selling your home, stop reading and call your agent for advice. I am only kidding, keep reading. Karma and I are close and she’ll get you
Tip 1: Get out the trash bags and donation bins and purge your house like a Priest performing an exorcism. You can never get rid of too much and the cost of moving your “stuff” when you sell your home will be expensive and wasteful. If you haven’t used it since you moved into the home 7 years ago, you probably won’t use it at your new home.
Donate!! Get the tax write offs from the 501(c)3 non profits and their tax id, they are happy to give you a receipt for the items. Most of the organizations will even pick up the items for you. You are also helping the community by donating gently used items to be resold to a struggling family or individual looking to buy the item at a deep discount. It is a win-win for everyone! Remember, you still live there and you are allowed to have your belongings. Just keep the clutter at a minimum.
Tip 2: Have your Real Estate professional do a thorough walk through with you at the home. Their expert eyes and nose can detect and address any possible issues with the property before you list the house. Some agents like to do a pre-home inspection with their home inspectors. I do not usually recommend that for my clients because of liability that then puts on my sellers to disclose to potential buyers. You have lived in the house, you know what is not working and what you neglected on maintenance with your home systems. Fix it right and on your terms, not your potential buyers terms, to save time and money. A good agent who is experienced and knows houses will be able to do address most issues by performing a walk through and they should include this in their listing package. I want to be clear, I am not a home inspector and I do not claim to be one. I know houses and how they operate, the main issues to look out for and smells that are of concern.
Tip 3: Have your agent schedule a Termite/Moisture inspection with their trusted company. This is a $85-$150 inspection and is worth its weight in gold because of the costs associated with repairs in crawl space and termite damage. Did you know that if in the purchase contract the buyer orders and the seller pays for the inspection (always seller pays for VA loan) the buyer gets to dictate who does the repairs and it will be at the sellers expense?? I am a crazy control freak and have trust issues, if my seller is paying, I am ordering for them. I know that there is a lot of terminology there; always call me if you have any questions!
Tip 4: Bust out the bluetooth player, magic erasers, windex, duster and paintbrushes and get to work on cleaning and repainting. ***White Trim Paint*** is your BEST FRIEND when you are getting your home ready to list. It is cheap and does wonders for ascetics in pictures and showings. I had a couple in San Diego, Military, that had to sell. They had tenants in the home and the home was a little dull and dirty, even after my amazing cleaner came in and spent 10 hours there deep cleaning. I wanted to pull top dollar for them so I spent 5 hours, the night before listing the home, spent $47 at my local Ace Hardware on paint and brushes, got my speaker and painted all the trim in the main living area and bathrooms. That effort pulled in at least $10,000 in profit for my sellers. I held an open house and I had 3 (THREE) people compliment the paint and bright fresh white trim and how the house ‘popped’. A huge pet peeve of mine is dirty trim work in a house and dirt and grime collected in the corners of the walls. It seriously will take a few minutes to wipe down and make a significant difference.
**Side note: My clients never pay for my cleaners and my services painting and prepping the home for sale. These services and more are included in my listings. I am competitive and want to get a high price point for you.**
Tip 5: Get that curb appeal and exterior ready to show off! I will even drop off my pressure washer, happy to do it myself if the weather is nice, to get the cobwebs off the front door and clean off the grime of winter. No one wants to walk up to a house and have spiders crawling on them while they try to open the front door. If you have any landscaping, clean it up and plant a few flowers. This is again a minimal expense and just needs you to put some effort in to show the house was cared for and ready for the new buyers. It is very obvious to me, when I pull up to a home, if that property was maintained and well cared for by the seller. If you won’t spend a couple hours to get your exterior looking good when you are trying to sell the home, I know you didn’t take care of it while you lived there. A house poorly maintained is not going to pull a maximum sales price.
I have so many other tips and lists of what I do for my sellers when we are preparing to sell their properties. If you want a truly dedicated and professional Realtor, call me for a customized selling plan of action to ensure you pull a maximum profit when selling your home.