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February 19, 2013 / patrickbelhon

Seven Easy Steps to Prepare Your Home for a Quick Sale

Before people move, they often think about what is coming next. They think about their new neighborhood or their new house. They think about a new job, a new school and a new life in general. While these exciting attributes are all reasons to move, they should never be the only thing on the mind during a move. After all, the vast majority of buyers have to sell their current home first.

San Diego home ready for the market2013- Patrick Belhon

Buying is the exhilarating part of the moving process. Selling, on the other hand, can be much more stressful and harder to predict. While it is fine to think about what is coming next, all sellers should focus on their more immediate task first. In fact, it is probably important to start preparing for a sale before even listing the home or starting to actively look at other homes.

To get started, consider the following tasks to get any home ready for the market.

1. Finish projects. Almost every homeowner has a list of projects around the house that need to be done. Maybe there is a piece of crown molding that needs to be replaced. Maybe there is a door that needs to be rehung. It could even be as simple as touching up old nail holes or putting in door stoppers. These tasks are all relatively small and easy, but most homeowners let them slide for weeks, months or even years. While it is certainly fine to live without such small fixes, it can be very helpful to finish these tasks prior to putting a home on the market. Prospective buyers are usually looking for homes that are move-in ready. While small fixes are easy in reality, they are also a turn off for buyers who are looking for an easy transition. Getting the fixes done in advance is an easy way to boost a home’s value without much additional time or money.

2. Remove clutter. Most people have lots of stuff. In day to day life, things simply accumulate. When preparing to move, it is recommended to minimize the sheer amount of stuff in a home. On a broad level, this means getting rid of the piles of mail sitting on the desk or filing away children’s school work that usually sits on the kitchen table. However, clutter can also include personal items. Put picture frames away and take appliances off the countertop. Throw out old magazines and do not leave purses or backpacks by the door. In some cases, it may even be necessary to get rid of some furniture, moving the extra armchair into the basement or attic to create more space in a living room. If possible, try to reduce the number of toys out if there are children in the home. Removing clutter not only shows how big the home is, but it also helps buyers envision themselves in the home since it is not overrun with personal touches.

3. Repaint. Paint is easy to change and can have a dramatic impact on a home. In some cases, adding a new layer of paint can be a way to refresh a home, especially if the current paint job is old. However, repainting is also recommended for rooms that have bold or unusual color choices. While bright red may be the perfect decorating choice for one homeowner, it may go against the sensibilities of most buyers. Buyers, then, may not be able to see past an unusual paint color and may be dissuaded from purchasing the home. Repainting the home with fresh, neutral colors can be a great way to give a home universal appeal with minimal cost.

4. Clean. It may sound simple, but sometimes the most important thing to do is cleaning. While many homeowners maintain some sort of regular cleaning regimen, it is important to be very thorough before selling. Wax wood floors and shampoo any carpets. Wash the walls and scrub all the sinks. This is the time to get rid of the stains in the entryway or to finally get rid of the soap scum in the shower. Polish the cabinets and wash the windows. Make sure every inch of the house is clean and fresh in order to make the home as appealing as possible to potential buyers.

5. Stage furniture. Staging involves rearranging the furniture to be more enticing to buyers. Most people put their things in positions that are most comfortable for daily living. In these cases, a living room may have all the chairs centered around a large TV. A dining room could be used as an office. While these choices are fine for daily living, they do not always look appealing to buyers. It can be helpful to rearrange furniture to showcase the attributes of the space itself, putting furniture in logical and tasteful arrangements that promote flow. It is also important to make sure that rooms have a single, logical purpose. Make sure that bedrooms have beds and that dining rooms have tables and chairs.

6. Renovate. When everything else is finished, it may be time to look at renovations. For most people, large scale renovations prior to a move are not a good investment. However, there are small renovations that can improve the value of a home. Usually the best renovations for moving focus on updating bathrooms or kitchens. These renovations could include replacing flooring, updating countertops or refacing cabinets. Always keep the renovations on budget, especially since there is not always a direct return on investment. However, even simple renovations in these key areas can dramatically improve the chances of getting a home sold.

7. Find a realtor to help. Getting a good realtor on board is an essential part of preparing a home for the market. For residents in San Diego, there is no better choice than Patrick Belhon. With ample experience in the San Diego real estate market, Patrick Belhon can help homeowners prepare their home for a sale while also finding the home of their dreams.

Read more about  Using Smell to Make a Sale here at THE WALL STREET JOURNAL.

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Leave a Comment
  1. phillipsangley / Mar 24 2014 4:50 am

    One thing always remember is to always be patient with the market and with buyers in the current real estate environment you are in. Getting a true and honest market analysis on your home from a full time local agent will help you develop a realistic and competitive pricing strategy for your home, designed to bring in the right, qualified buyers.

    Jeffrey T Angley

  2. Brian Linnekens / Mar 29 2014 9:36 am

    When you are thinking about selling your property or home you need to find a way to make your house stand out from the rest. First you need to think your home or house as a property, commodity and real estate. Your aim is to make the house as a potential one, not yours. If you don’t have much knowledge to make a decision you can consult a good real estate.

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