1. Remove Unnecessary Furniture
We all love that big sofa for watching movies, or the big game - but it may take up a bit too much space in the living room, making it hard for buyers to visualize their own furniture in the room, even worse it can also make the living room appear smaller. Make sure you only have the necessary amount of furniture throughout your home to help guide buyers through your house, and help them understand the flow of your home from room to room. Removing awkward or unnecessary furniture is a great place to start!
2. Clear Out Closets
Have a walk-in closet that you haven't "walked in" in years? Make sure your closets are free of clutter, and remove anything that has built up to turn your closet into a mini-storage locker. Buyers want to get an idea on how much they can fit in your closets, and having them full of your own stuff can make it difficult for them to visualize. Also, using your bedroom closet for storage of unrelated items might give the impression that your home has very little actual storage space. Make sure your linen closest have neatly-folded linens and that you aren't stuffing to much when your don't have room. Remove any overflow towels and other linens to help give of a spacious feel to your linen closets and ensure that all linens are folded nicely. Lastly, all those winter jackets you've been holding onto for years are not helping either - clear out all but a few coats and jackets to show how big your entryway jacket closet is.
3. Clutter-Free Kitchen Counters
Big kitchens sell! If you have stuff all over your kitchen counters it just looks like you need more space, and that your buyers will likely need more as well. A small kitchen can be shown off in a much larger way by simply removing counter top appliances, fruit bowls, stacks of paper, too many plants and other common counter top items. Remove all but a few items to keep that welcome feeling, but make sure you're not overdoing it. Also, bonus tip: don't leave used rags or hand towels, in your kitchen or bathroom where they can create nasty odors and kill a first impression for buyers.
4. Photos and Wall Art
Too many pictures can give a room a closed in, cramped feel. Don't have too many pictures on the walls, and don't have too many personalized photos - stick with simple art, and decorations. People want to visualize themselves in your house, and seeing photos of you all over the place can be counter-productive for that.
Dull lighting can kill the ambience in a room - but having big bright lighting can make a room more warm and welcoming. Replace old light bulbs with some higher wattage bulbs to give a brighter, welcoming feel for buyers as soon as they come through the door. Also, make sure window coverings are opened up to let in more natural light.
6. Clean the walls!
Bathrooms walls can generate build up that is not desirable to people considering to purchase your home, and can sometimes look pretty gross. Get a gentle cleaner and mix with some water to spray your walls and clean off any finger marks, bathroom or kitchen build up and fill any unused holes in the walls from wall art, or photos. This simple task can make a house go from old an dated looking to fresh, modern, and new.
7. Master Bedroom
The master bedroom should appeal to both men and women. Don't over do it with gender-specific decorations, furniture and other features, but add a couple throw pillows, and don't forget to MAKE YOUR BED (you do every day already right?)! The master bedroom is one of the most important rooms of the house, and removing clutter, and keeping it clean will help create a more inviting space for prospective purchasers for your home.
You don't have to paint the whole house, but do the necessary touch ups and consider painting adjoining rooms the same color to increase the appearance of the size of both rooms. A fresh coat can also provide a huge boost in appeal for both kitchens and bathrooms.
9. Old Appliances
Replacing old appliances with new ones, will scream "New Kitchen" and they don't have to be included in your listing, but having brand new appliances in a kitchen can be a big difference between a modern, fresh look and a dated, old kitchen.
10. Pet Odors
Get rid of all common sources of pet odor, and keep any necessary ones as clean as possible every day. It can be a huge negative first impression for buyers to enter a home and immediately smell something unpleasant. They may not be animal lovers and those smells can immediately deter them from your home.
11. All The Small Things!
Torn screen doors, cracks in windows, chips or large holes in walls, cracked base board, burnt out lights, loose door knobs and cabinet handles are all among the simplest, and cheapest fixes you can make to your home. Doing these small tasks can give a more polished, functional impression to your buyers, while skipping this step immediately screams at them that the house has not been maintained.
12. Front Entryway
Stain or paint your front door step - its' the first thing people see when they come by your house and it needs to be inviting! If you have chipped paint, or stain that is fading, give them a fresh coat.
13. House Exterior
The same details go with the outside of your home. Remove all unnecessary junk or yard furniture that you do not need - store additional vehicles elsewhere if you can, and remove any garbage that has been building up in your back yard over the years. Trim exterior bushes, pull all weeds, plant some fresh new flowers, and clean the edges of your lawn. Again, this little attention to detail is a simple and easy way to help with that first impression for new showings, or for those prospective buyers who are driving around the neighbourhood looking for "For Sale" signs.
In the end, your home needs to be the most appealing it can be, and these are just some of the ways you can help to prepare your home so it can sell itself, as soon as possible, and for as much money as possible.
If you are considering selling your home, it is imperative that you work with an experienced realtor who has a proven track record of selling homes. Matt and Chris Town are both Royal LePage Director's Platinum Award recipients, an award given to the top 5% of Royal LePage Realtors® within the interior of British Columbia. Call either Matt or Chris Town today to learn more about selling your home!