I am not a home selling expert. I am not a realtor; though I did get my real estate license when I was 19 and attempt to use it for a while before realizing that it was not for me at that age. In the interest of full disclosure here, I’ve also never once sold a home. I did sell a piece of property once that we bought next door to our first house, but it was just land. Despite the fact that we were able to buy our dream house a year and-a-half ago, we never sold the house we built more than a decade ago (we rent it out).
I don’t know what it’s like to prep my home for sale, but my real estate history, friends in the real estate business and in the flipping business and a love of HGTV give me a pretty good idea of what is required to prep your home for sale. Additionally, our most favorite friends are readying their home to go on the market shortly, and we’ve been so impressed with how they’ve prepped their home. They’ve spent a great deal of money preparing their house for show, and many people do. However, we want to let our homeowner readers know that you don’t have to spend a fortune to sell your home. In fact, there are ample solutions that will prepare your home for the market that won’t cost you one dime. Go ahead and thank me now.
Get rid of your stuff
We aren’t saying you have to move out of your home at the moment, but you do have to get rid of your stuff. I’m sorry to say this because I’m certain your personal style is simply gorgeous, but it’s just that; your personal style. It might not be a prospective buyer’s personal style. It might not be someone else’s favorite look. Your décor might make it difficult for some buyers to see the potential in your house, particularly if you have a lot of stuff and a lot of knick-knacks lying around.
Your best bet is to declutter. Empty surfaces, show off the house and not your stuff. You don’t want your collection of shot glasses that takes up the entire bar to prevent potential buyers from realizing that you even have a bar while they stand there and wonder if you are an alcoholic. They want to see the bar so they can imagine hosting gatherings of their own.
Put on a pot of decadence
Your home is your home, but it’s difficult for people to see themselves living there if they walk in and immediately smell your dog, your cat, your teenage son’s sports gear or anything else. Make it a habit to put on a pot of water and fill it with some orange slices, a bit of nutmeg and a few cinnamon sticks on a very low setting when you’re home. It won’t take long for your house to take on that smell quite naturally, making it seem like a homey, beautiful place to live to those who come through your front doors.
Mow the lawn
Really; it’s that simple to change the entire look of your home. Add to the curb appeal by mowing the grass, getting rid of weeds and cleaning off the furniture on your front porch. I’m not kidding when I say it makes a huge difference and it costs nothing.
Clean it up
We know you keep the dishes clean and that you like clean toilets, but don’t forget the little things. The baseboards should be nice and clean. The tops of your cabinets and behind your fridge should sparkle. Don’t forget that the cabinets and drawers and even the pantry require a good cleaning. The neater your house looks, the easier it is for people to see themselves living there. I’ll tell you that when we were house hunting, I would immediately form dislike to messy homes because all I could see when I walked in was a mess and the home no longer appealed to me behind the mess. Clean houses, though, immediately made me feel at home.
Rearrange your furniture
Now is a good time to find photos of homes that have similar layouts to yours and use them as inspiration. See how people set up their own living spaces with their own furniture to make it look classic, elegant and chic. When you emulate that, your home takes on a more aesthetically appealing look as well. Sometimes it helps to make a house look bigger by removing one or two pieces of furniture from certain rooms, so open yourself up to that when it comes time to rearranging and setting up your home in a way that might not be your favorite, the most convenient for your family or the most livable for you; these things sell.
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