Getting Your Home Ready For Sale

Once you have decided to sell your home it’s time to start preparing for your home to be listed, photographed and ultimately your move out. Stay on top by reading and following these essential tips for readiness! DECLUTTER Get out the clear garbage bags and a sharpie… Every Single Item In Your Home Belongs In

One Of These Three Categories
1) Junk
2) Donate or Kijiji/Garage Sale
3) It’s coming with you (Anything staying and moving on with you doesn’t necessarily mean it should be around during the “on Market”/Staging stage… It may have to get packed up and off to a storage unit awaiting its’ new home

Potential buyers are looking for storage so de-cluttering will mean clearing the kitchen counter of everything down to and and including the toaster (yes, the toaster – staged homes are NOT USER FRIENDLY), declutter and reduce items in the pantry, the cupboards, lower cupboards. Get rid of stale spices. Reduce those bottles under the kitchen sink. pour six bottles of mostly empty cleaner into one almost empty bottle…The same applies to front closet and all other closets and NO! Don’t load up the basement and garage with your “stuff”. It will show potential buyers that you are faking it and don’t have enough room for THEIR STUFF either…

The de-cluttering extends into the basement, the garage and garden shed. Great time to clear out old Xmas decorations you haven’t had the heart to toss, the six rakes you never use and so on… Do get a short-term storage locker for the stuff that’s coming out of your home and off to the next but being stored for now… And then it’s already packed!!!

All personal photographs have to go, as do diplomas and trophies. Clear the fridge of magnets and kids’ art work (pack that in the Keep container). “Busy day” calendars should be taken down and stored in a desk drawer for reference.

Look up and down and behind. Shine up all light fixtures, REALLY clean those ceiling fans, AND clean the ceiling vents in the bathrooms. Get fingerprints off the walls and really take a good look around door frames and light switches.

If you have pets, wash all their bedding, blanket etc… wash their toys and keep them at bay. Have the dog washed before the house hits the market…. it’s amazing how we are not aware of how stinky our own pets can be. Buy the BEST litter you can and keep in refreshed and empty!!!! Better yet: If you have a best friend/ relative that can pet sit for a week or so it’s well worth it. (Many staging furniture rental companies will Not rent furniture to stagers if there are pets present in the home.)

Nothing says clean like clean windows… don’t argue this point. Hire a pro. It’s amazing what it will do to brighten up your home. You can do the inside (newspaper is better than paper towels) and the pro can risk life and limb outside. It’s so disappointing to show a home that has been staged but the windows have ten years (plus?!) of dirt on them…Personally, I would point that out to my buyer client. And I would wonder where else in-home maintenance has been cut.

We all have neighbouring homes that we have admired over the years. Always well kept; And we all know the ones we have not admired. Messy front porch, bad lighting, yard and plantings in rough shape.

As SOON as you are thinking of selling get out front and take a look with the cold hard eye of a buyer. And then get to work. And do it straight away. Last minute “fluffing” will be noted by those who walk by your property every day and they will wonder (and discuss with others) as to How Many Other Last Minute Fixes Are Happening.

Here are some quick fixes to help spruce up your curb appeal

– Paint – Front entry! Door and surround… Front railings… Porch and steps if at all warranted(Anywhere the buyers are going to have time to look at while the agent struggles with key to get door opened…)
– New Entrance Light, Mailbox and House Number – all the same and co-ordinated… Looks fresh and sets a super-positive tone to your home before they even step inside
– New front mat and good sized planter.

– Nothing goes further in making a place look great than freshly painted walls and trim. Colours should be neutral and I’m happy to help suggest a colour/s to make your home look it’s best and most welcoming. “Personal Colours” are not advised. Wall paper is not advised and generally should be removed. There are some exceptions – when brand new large patterned papers have been hung….but don’t ever wallpaper “to sell”.

– Always consult with a realtor when it comes to this. We know what buyers are looking for and we want to be sure your reno dollar has the best return. Any renovation will not only have to make sense for you and your home but also for your street and neighbourhood. Some neighbourhoods are well suited to new laminate, but some areas will demand hardwood.

Have an annual “home-check-up” to keep up to date on what is trending with buyers. We’re in homes everyday, and see what makes buyers swoon. Always consult with your realtor before taking on renovations or making changes. We can help you make the best decisions and hold you back from potential mistakes.

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