Preparing to sell your home? Whatever you do, don’t list it until it’s ready for prime time. That means fixing broken appliances, cleaning carpets thoroughly, and neutralizing the house with fresh paint and less clutter. Trust us when we say that even a few minor improvements can make a major difference in the eyes of potential buyers. If you’re looking to sell your home quickly and efficiently, we recommend making these 10 improvements before putting your home on the market.
- Get rid of the clutterIs your home filled with too much stuff? It may be time to say “goodbye” to all that added clutter. Why? Because clutter only makes a home appear smaller (not to mention, disorganized!) and that won’t help sell the house. When buyers walk into your home they should see the potential not the mess. Plus, if they notice scattered toys and junked up closets everywhere, they’ll also be more inclined to think of the house as a “big project” (read: not good!). To declutter your home, try renting a self-storage unit to store your belongings before and during the move. You can also donate items to various second-hand stores, including Goodwill or Habitat for Humanity. For more information on how to declutter and stage your home before a move, check here.
- Spruce up your entrywayWant to make a great first impression? Try sprucing up your entryway so that it appeals to the masses. First, start with a nice area rug or runner by the front door. Make sure to also add a rug pad underneath to avoid having the rug slip out from under you. Other tips for improving your entryway include adding a basket, shoe rack, hooks, framed art or mirror to add character and warmth to your home.
- Give your walls a fresh coat of paintChances are good that your walls haven’t been painted since you initially moved in. Before putting your home on the market, I highly recommend having the interior professionally painted. From light grays to creamy beiges, aim for neutral colors throughout the home. Not only will light colored paint make your home appear bigger and brighter, but it will also prevent potential buyers from getting distracted by those bright orange and pink walls.
- Replace light fixtures and light bulbsBelieve it or not, light fixtures can make a big impression on potential home buyers. If your light fixtures are no longer working or are simply outdated, I recommend switching them out for new and improved ones. The reason: dead light bulbs and old-fashioned fixtures will make home buyers assume the house hasn’t been well taken care of. Thanks to various home goods websites, you shouldn’t have any trouble finding neutral and affordable fixtures for your home.
- Clean or replace carpetsIf your home has carpets, you’ll need to make sure these are clean before showing your house. This is especially important if those carpets are located in a heavily trafficked area. Dirty pet paws, messy kids and muddy shoes can all wreak havoc on your carpets over the years. Fortunately, carpets are easy to clean. If the carpet only requires a little touch-up, I recommend a thorough vacuum followed by blotting them with stain remover. If the carpets require professional cleaning, you can either hire a company to steam clean the carpet or you can rent a steam cleaner and do it yourself.
- Fix loose doorknobsImagine a potential home buyer opening your bedroom door and – oops – the doorknob falls off. Not a good scenario. To prevent this from happening, make sure all of your doorknobs – from your pantry to your closets – are tightened and secure. All you’ll need is a screwdriver and a few extra minutes to make this quick fix.
- Do a little landscapingLandscaping your yard goes a long way in improving your home’s curb appeal. To step up your landscaping game, I recommend visiting a local nursery. Many times these garden centers offer landscape design services to clients and/or they can assist you with choosing appropriate plants for your outdoor space. If you have a townhome or condo, I suggest adding a few potted plants to your porch, patio or stoop. This is an easy and cost effective way to make your home more inviting to potential buyers.
- Clean your groutThere’s nothing like dirty grout in your shower, bathtub or tile flooring to really turn a potential home buyer off. Not only does your make house appear dirty overall, but it’s also a tad unsanitary. If your grout is just mildly dirty, you can actually clean it yourself with baking soda and water, according to Bob Vila. However, if they need a serious cleaning, I suggest hiring a professional to steam clean (and possibly replace) your grout.
- Create a “bonus room”Who doesn’t love having a “bonus room” in their home? From a home gym to a playroom, having an added bonus room is a big plus for potential home buyers and will help your house stand out. HGTV notes that “families use bonus rooms differently than empty-nesters and singles,” so be sure to know who you’re aiming to sell the house to before converting a room into a bonus room. Several bonus room ideas include: an office, a kid’s playroom, TV room, gym and game room.
- Fix appliances and HVAC systemsFinally, before showing your home to potential buyers, you’ll need to fix any and all broken appliances and HVAC systems. From your refrigerator to your AC unit, potential buyers expect these systems to be working properly. So unless you happen to be a handyman, I suggest calling your local repairman to properly fix the units. Even if your appliances aren’t broken, it may still be a good idea to seek professional maintenance for all systems in your home before putting it on the market.
Ready to move?
Once your home sells, it’s time to call in the help of a professional moving company. Fortunately, Moving.com’s extensive network of reputable and reliable movers makes it easy to find and book the best moving company for the job. All relocation companies in our network are licensed and insured, so you can rest assured that your move will be in good hands. Best of luck and happy moving!