Selling Your Home

First Impressions Count!

Advice on Selling Your Home

It is common to think that by cleaning and fixing your home to sell you will receive a better price. You could. Here is some selling your house advice that could make a difference.

I had a couple that walked into a house where the main room was paneled in dark wood. It was beautiful paneling, but the wood made the room look dark and old. The couple didn't like the house. Several houses later we walked into a home, almost identical, except that the main room's paneling had been painted white. My buyers told me, "This is just what we are looking for, something light and bright." The second house was priced several thousands of dollars higher. So, preparing your home can make a profit difference.

More often, just cleaning and fixing your home properly will not bring you more money, but it will get your house sold faster if it is priced correctly--competitively. Your Realtor should be able to advise you on price.

Fix Your Home Quickly

1. Start with the yard. Clean it up and add flowers. Research has shown that adding flowers for color will get more people in to look at your home. First impressions are everything!

2. De-junk your home. That means put everything away, neatly. If you have more things than you can fit in your storage areas, rent a storage area. The cost is small compared to paying two mortgages or keeping a vacant house.


No room in your house should look this messy when you are selling your house.
No room in your house should look this messy when you are selling your house.

Have a System

3. Figure out a system for keeping your house clean every day during the sale of your home. Tell your children to put their shoes under their bed when they take them off. No one will look there. You can have papers on a desk, but arrange them neatly. Remove the coat tree from this area and put the exercise bike on the other side of the room. Clutter makes your room look small, and people like big rooms.

4. Remove all personal items, especially photos. Buyers need to envision themselves living in your space, not you living there. Also remove from view toothbrushes, jewelry, and money, anything that someone could touch or pick-up. This is not just good selling your home advice, but good whenever guests are in your home.

The Best Price

5. Houses sell better and for a better price with furniture, so you shouldn't have to move out. But, if you must vacate your home, do some minimal decorating for color like a faux plant or a vase or candles.

6. Arrange your furniture to make your room look larger. Make a fireplace or window the focal point in living areas. And, as much as possible, show your rooms as they were intended to be used. It's acceptable to use a bedroom as an office, but using a dining as a bedroom is not so good.

7. Put away all counter appliances and clear your counters. Remove all items from the refrigerator door. Hide all trash cans and keep them clean. Keep toilet seats closed.

8. Increase the visual size of small bedrooms by removing excess and oversized furniture and by putting a white bedspread on the bed.

9. Wash all fingerprints from refrigerators, door knob areas, and light switches. Touch up paint. If you don't have left-over paint, go to a hobby store and pick up some acrylic paints to mix and paint or paint samples from a home store. Exact matches are difficult, but white on white and black on black always will look better than black on white. An off shade of white touch-up paint on a white wall will be far less noticeable than a black mark.

Keep it Bright

10. Wash windows and leave blinds open. Your home's visual space will open up and brighten up tremendously! Even if there is a brick wall on the other side of a window, do this because having one blind closed will draw attention to it. Buyers will look anyhow. And, leave all doors inside your home open.

11. Leave lights on in dark areas of your house and on dark days. Many Realtors neglect to turn on lights when they enter rooms. If you go to a builder's model home, you will find the lights on in all rooms.

12. Add fragrance to your home with discrete deodorizers. Stick them in faux plants or behind toilets--hidden. Use scents like apple cinnamon not overly floral smells.

Selling your home advice includes your presentation to your Realtor. Before you invite any Realtor to discuss selling your home, make sure it looks and smells clean and de-cluttered. If a Realtor is happy to get your listing, if your home is ready to sell, she will suggest the best price and be more willing to promote it.

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Comments 3 comments

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Makingsense 6 years ago

All very good ideas. We're laying the groundwork for a move in 2012 and weighing the options now. Thanks.

Pete Conrad profile image

Pete Conrad 5 years ago

I have walked into homes that have the kind of sparkle you describe. It really makes a difference!

Graham 4 years ago

Great tips on how to sell your home. On our site we also offer great tips on how to sell your home. Check us out!

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