With a little elbow grease in just the right places, you’ll get your home looking its best when you list it. Here is a quick and easy guide to get your home ready for buyers so that it shines both inside and out.
Curb Appeal: A Big Deal
People often underestimate the value of good curb appeal. You want to speak to a potential buyer before they even get out of their car! Most buyers drive by homes and decide whether it’s worth a visit at all. In just a day or two, you can upgrade your home’s first impression.
- Make sure the front entrance shines—literally! Take a look at all the elements of your front entrance: the door, the hardware, the fixtures, and walkway.
- Add a burst of color and repaint the front door so that it stands out and photographs well. Your front door is a buyer’s first impression of your home. A new paint color is a cost-effective and smart way to welcome them to your home, whether they view it online or go through the front door.
- Take care of aging hardware around your entrance. Update or polish the locks, mailbox and put up modern looking street numbers that match the rest of your home’s hardware.
- Get rid of any debris around your yard, like tools or toys, and do some high-impact yard work such as pruning shrubs and weeding beds. Don’t forget to add fresh mulch!
- Reset, replace, paint or clean any walkway stones leading up to your home.
- Think about adding window boxes for an extra splash of color.
- If you have a deck, porch or fence, spend an afternoon to power wash, stain or paint it to make it look fresh and new.
- Throw out your old welcome mat—buyers want a clean entryway.
Time to Go Inside: Sweep Your Buyers Off Their Feet
Ok, now that your home looks amazing on the outside, it needs to look equally as good on the inside.
- Since you are moving anyway, now’s a GREAT time to get rid of everything you don’t plan on moving. A good rule of thumb–whether it’s clothes or decorations—if you haven’t touched it in a year, toss it.
- Go through your home and find ways to make it look clean and organized — Declutter counter-tops. Keep toys to a minimum (for just a few days while your home is on the market). File your paperwork. Organize your now roomy closets since you’ve donated everything you haven’t worn in a year. Box up any extraneous items and put in your basement, attic, trunk, a friend’s house, or wherever else it can go for just a few days.
- Look at each room floor to ceiling with a critical eye. Patch and paint so everything looks fresh. You’d be amazed at what just painting the trim and ceiling will do to a room and that will cost about half as much as a full paint job!
- Replace all outdated light fixtures. Replacing dated fixtures doesn’t have to be expensive at all. Or, at least replace the light bulbs with the highest wattage fit for your fixture, which will lighten up the rooms. No fluorescent lighting, though—nothing looks good in that lighting.
- Take off window treatments and screens. This lets as much light in as possible. This will make your home bright and sparkly.
- Invest in an inexpensive set of white towels, bath mat and shower curtain for each bathroom. Pack up the old stuff—people want the bathrooms to feel like a spa. New, clean white accessories will do the trick.
- Become a cleaning fanatic — Clean the windows, floors, counters bathrooms, appliances, everything (twice).
Just remember— we sell our homes differently than how you live in your home. We want to create the most perfect version of living in your home. That way your buyers can picture THEMSELVES, NOT YOU, living there. And these tips will help you do exactly that!
Lastly, don’t feel like you have to figure this out on your own. I’m here to help. I’ll tell you what you need to focus on and what you can skip and make this whole prepping your home for the market as easy on you as possible!
I'm Anna and I love helping buyers and sellers in and around Ashburn. Let me know if I can answer any questions you may have about the process!
43777 Central Station Drive, Suite 390
Ashburn, VA 20147
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