5 Tips on Getting Your House Ready To Sell

by Greg on May 26, 2020

person signing house selling contract

When you want to sell your house, taking certain actions will help it sell faster and for a better price. Careful preparations also help the sales transaction go as smoothly as possible, eliminating frustrating and stressful hiccups that can delay the closing. These five tips on getting your house ready to sell will help you get through this major life change.

1. Fix What Is Broken
If you know something in your house or yard is in need of repair, take care of it now. Buyers will not walk but run away from a home that has a rotten roof, termite infestation, electrical problems or a damaged foundation. Even smaller issues, such as a squeaky door, burned-out light bulb or rusted air vent could make a buyer assume that you have not taken good care of the property. Consider getting a home inspection before listing your home for sale. The inspector will give you a thorough report of structural, mechanical, electrical, plumbing and other issues with your home. You may also consider getting a pest inspection so that you can take action if any wood-destroying pests or other problematic critters are found. If possible you might consider updating anything that is outdated such as the flooring, carpeting or cabinets Be sure to use licensed contractors, get the proper permits and save all of the documentation of the work you have done to your home.

2. Depersonalize Your Space
According to HGTV, you should remove the items that make your house a home. This includes removing the framed photographs and photo albums on your walls and shelves. You should also remove personal collections or items that someone might find offensive. It is also a good idea to remove religious items. Consider painting your walls in neutral colors in order to create a sort of blank canvas that appeals to more people. Doing these things allows potential buyers to imagine themselves and their own belongings in your home.

3. Price It Right
Work with your real estate agent in order to set the right price for your home. The agent should run comps in order to find out the average price per square foot on recently-sold homes with the same number of bedrooms, bathrooms, size, and amenities as your home. If you price your home too high, fewer people will consider it. Most people put an upper bound on their search criteria, so they might not even see your home if it is priced too high. If you are in a hurry to move, consider working with a place that buys houses in any condition or states that they buy houses for cash. For example if you live in Texas you might look for someone that says, “We buy houses in San Antonio” in any condition. This could save you a lot of time and prevent a lot of hassle.

4. Get Rid of Clutter
As a rule of thumb, your closets, cabinets, and drawers should be one-third empty when selling your home. This could mean removing a lot of your personal items before listing your house for sale. There are many strategies for decluttering, and each has its pros and cons. You may find it efficient to rent a dumpster for large, bulky and heavy items that need to be thrown away. Consider scheduling a charity pickup of items that you can donate. If you have items that will not be needed, will not fit at your new home, donating them could help with your tax situation. For broken items, if you have not fixed them yet, chances are that you will not have time during or after your move.
The less clutter there is in your house the higher chance you have of potential buyers being more interested in putting in an offer. A clean house on display makes buyers more interested and gives them the ability to see how their own belongings will fit in your home. If you can do nothing else, make sure your house is as clean and decluttered as possible.

5. Make a Great First Impression
Once your home is listed for sale, keep it clean and ready to show. The sink should always be clear of dirty dishes, no laundry should be in the baskets and all waste cans should be emptied. Take care to avoid any odor buildup in your home. Strong odors from cooking, cleaning or pets could deter some buyers. If an agent calls and wants to show your home, be flexible. Some buyers may have tight schedules or irregular times when they can tour homes for sale.
With proper preparations, your home will attract more interested buyers, quality bids and fewer requests for remedies.

Being prepared for any possible pitfalls with a plan will also help your sales process go off without a hitch. Taking these measures when getting ready to sell your house is a worthy investment of your time and resources.

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Samantha Higgins

Samantha Higgins is a professional writer with a passion for research, observation, and innovation. She is nurturing a growing family of twin boys in Portland, Oregon with her husband. She loves kayaking and reading creative non-fiction.

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