Step 6: Prepare your home for sale

Break out the mop and the paintbrush. It’s time to give your home a mini-makeover. Here are all the little things you can do to attract the big offers.

See your home through a buyer’s eyes
Now’s the time to address your home’s little imperfections: the hole in the screen door, the chipped paint on the baseboards, the mess in the basement. Print out a copy of our Home Preparations Checklist and take a thorough tour of your home.

Get rid of clutter
Your house will feel a lot bigger and more inviting when you clear out those closets, remove bulky, unused furniture and rearrange the remaining pieces to make the best use of space. If you haven’t used something in the past year, toss it, donate it to charity or sell it.

Clean everything
Cleaning is the single most cost effective way to make your home more attractive to buyers. Floors, windows, walls, doors, baseboards – everything! Give extra care and attention to the bathrooms and kitchen. And once it’s all clean, keep it clean! You never know when your ideal buyer will visit.

Repair as much as you can, within reason
Some repairs are absolutely vital, like a leaky roof or basement and unsafe electrical problems. Otherwise, fix all the little things like leaky faucets, doors that squeak, and small cracks in the ceiling.

Depersonalize your home
You want buyers to walk through your house and feel like it’s their home, not yours! Things like a cluttered wall of family portraits or your trophy collection are guaranteed to prevent buyers from emotionally placing themselves in your home. Remove everything that’s too much about you.

Never underestimate the power of paint
Strong colours on the walls or wild wallpaper make it hard for buyers to imagine their furniture in your house. Consider repainting your home in bright, neutral colours that will enhance a room’s size and look more inviting. Next to cleaning your home, paint is the most cost-effective way to increase your home’s appeal.

Add some beautifying touches
You don’t need to spend a fortune to make a big difference. Replace tattered old curtains with some fresh draperies. Mirrors on the wall help rooms feel more spacious. New houseplants add undeniable appeal. And on the outside of your home trim the trees, weed the garden and consider planting a few new flowers to make a great first impression.

Weighing the cost of improvements vs. the potential return
Don’t get so carried away with prepping your home that you forget why you’re doing this – to get more money! You need to consider two things before making any improvements.

  • Will this make my home more desirable to buyers?
  • Will this increase the value of my home more than it costs me to do it?

Your REALTOR® may also be able to offer useful tips and advice when it comes to prepping homes.

Step 7

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