Preparing your home for sale!

A few great tips on creating an atmosphere that will charm buyers and make them want to buy your home. Remember that you’ll never get another chance to make a first impression. And first impressions are what count! Follow these simple tips and create the competitive edge that may help you sell your home more quickly.

Drive-up Appeal

  • Trim trees and shrubs, clean out flower beds and invest in a few flats of seasonal flowers.
  • Paint or re-stain the front door, make sure the doorbell is working properly, wash the mailbox, keep the porch swept and get an attractive mat for people to wipe their feet. Potted plants and flowers in front make an inviting entrance.
  • Rid your driveway of any oil stains and move any old cars off the property.  potted plants, and flowers.
  • Don’t forget your front porch light, if it is old and/or broken spend $30 and give it a facelift with a new fixture.


​​Absolute Basics


  • Air out the home. Most people are turned off by even the smallest odor. Odors must be eliminated, especially those caused by dogs and cats; soiled diapers and/or cigarettes.
  • Clear Out the Clutter.  If you don’t do anything else you MUST do this. It is very difficult for buyers to see themselves living in the home if they can’t see the floor or the walls because there is stuff everywhere.  Purge or place in storage all the items that you do not need or don’t use daily. Buyers need to be able to visualize their furniture and their possessions in your home and if you have too much of your stuff hanging around they won’t be able to do this.
  •  Deep clean your home, cleaning seems obvious but in this case you want a true deep clean inside cabinets, bathrooms,  and closets. Washing all the windows in the home, inside and out.
  • Guns valuables or personal items should be locked away. If there is a drawer, assume that it will be opened, if there is a door assume someone will look  inside.
  • Clean out closets, cabinets and drawers. Closets should look like they have enough room to hold additional items. Get everything off the floor and don’t have the shelves piled to the ceiling.
  • Clean your carpets! If it has been over a year since the carpets have been cleaned, now is the time to have them cleaned. Bare floors should also be waxed or polished.
  • Bright light bulbs need to be put in every socket made for a bulb. Buyers like bright and cheery.
  • Make sure rooms are not overcrowded with furniture. Select pieces that look best, and store the rest.
  • Keep the kitchen sparking clean. Make sure all appliances are clean at all times. Straighten cupboards that appear cluttered and keep floors gleaming.
  • Bathtubs, showers and sinks should be freshly caulked. The grout should be clean and in good condition. There should be no leaks in the faucet or traps.


A few more suggestions


  • If you have limited counter space in the kitchen, keep unnecessary items put away.
  • Keep children’s toys out of the front yard, sidewalks and front porch.
  • Clean the ashes out of the fireplace.
  • Make sure that the pull-down staircase is working correctly. Be sure there is a light in the attic.
  • The pool needs to be sparking and free of leaves.


For those willing to go the extra mile


  • There are some things you can do that will really add flair to your home. If your house is the least bit dated, changing out wallpaper in the entry, kitchen or bathrooms and replacing outdated light fixtures adds desirability.
  • Fresh paint on interior and/or exterior where needed.
  • New appliances in the kitchen can be an exciting feature that can actually make the difference in a buyer choosing your home over another.
  • Hiring a professional stager can pay for itself. Research has shown that having your home staged can increase the chance of your home selling faster and for a higher sales price vs. not having it staged. You can hire a professional, or have a friend with an outsiders opinion come help.


​Showing your home


  • When you leave the house in the morning or during the day, leave it as if you know it is going to be shown.
  • Keep good scents in the house, such as potpourri or simmering pots or candles.
  • Make sure all the lights are on and window treatments are open.
  • Turn off the television.
  • Keep pets out of the way – preferably out of the house. Many people are uncomfortable around some animals and may even be allergic to them.
  • Leave your premises. Take a short break while your home is being shown. Buyers are intimidated when sellers are present and tend to hurry through the house. Let the buyer be at ease, and let the agents do their job.

© 2017 Houston Association of Realtors All rights reserved. Information deemed to be reliable but not guaranteed. The data relating to real estate for sale on this website comes in part from the Broker Reciprocity Program. Real estate listings held by brokerage firms other than Results Realty are marked with the BR logo and detailed information about them includes the name of the listing brokers. Listing broker has attempted to offer accurate data, but buyers are advised to confirm all items. Information last updated on 2017-06-23.

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