How To Prepare Your Home For The Highest Selling Price

by Connie Mei · 3 comments

single family home
Are you thinking about selling your home? Make sure your home is in the best possible selling condition before you officially put it on the market. There are what seems like thousands of new listings every week. As a homeowner ready to test the market, it’s important to ask yourself this question: what sets your home apart from the rest?

The first few weeks your home is on the market is crucial. The longer your property stays unsold, the lower the offers you’ll receive. You want to make sure your house makes a good first impression to any prospective buyer who sees it. If you’re selling your home, take a look at these tips to prepare your home for the highest selling price:

Do a Thorough Cleaning

The easiest but most important thing you need to do before you sell your home is to make sure it’s squeaky clean. Dust off the cobwebs, mop the floors, and wipe off any dust. Do a thorough cleaning of your home. A dirty home is unappealing and will immediately turn off any potential buyers.

Repaint Your Walls

Painting your walls can immediately give your home a fresh new look. You should especially do this if your walls are not a neutral color. A paint color like a neutral off white will make your home feel more open and bright, which will also help any buyer imagine the possibilities.

Add Extra Light

A bright home gives the illusion of space. It also makes you feel happier in general. When you show your home, open all the curtains and blinds to let as much light in as possible. Also add a lamp to any dark corners of your home. It makes a world of a difference.

De-clutter Your Closets

As you clean your home, make sure you don’t stuff everything into your closets. Buyers will open them to peek inside and finding a mess doesn’t make for a good impression. De-clutter your closets and storage area. The less stuff you have, the more space you have.

Fix the Little Things

While you might not be able to do a full renovation, you can fix the little things. Repair cracks in the wall, clean out the stains in the carpet, or polish your hardwood floors. You can even redecorate by changing out the knobs on your cabinets or adding paintings to your walls. These little things can really add value to a home, so the extra effort is well worth the investment.

Think About Curb Appeal

Last but not least, don’t forget about curb appeal. As buyers drive up to your home, you want them to feel excited to walk inside. Mow your lawn, add some plants and rake the leaves. Make your home inviting and give buyers the feeling of wanting to see what’s inside.

Have you sold a home before? What did you do to prepare it?

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  • Ryan G says:

    I will say that you need to budget some money for these activities. Decluttering, etc, doesn’t really require money unless you need to rent storage to hold stuff that you want to keep. Painting isn’t cheap, but is cheaper if you do it yourself (provided you have the time and skill). Fixing stuff isn’t free either. Also, consider making some minor upgrades to the home. You don’t have to do a bathroom or renovate a kitchen, but it can be relatively inexpensive to change out dated fixtures & window coverings. For a heavily dated kitchen or bath, painting the cabinets and replacing hardware can go a long way.

    The key is budgeting in advance to take care of these issues. Every home owner should set aside some money each month to deal with repairing/replacing issues/things in their home, but also to plan for updates. You won’t renovate very often, but if you live in a house for 30 years and do no renovations, you need to plan and budget to do some reno work before you move OR discount the house to attract a buyer. Setting aside a separate reno/update budget is a good way to handle this… since you won’t be renovating constantly, the money can invested instead of held in an account.

    My parents have been trying to sell their 35 year old home for several years. The decor and fixtures haven’t been updated since the house was built. My dad didn’t want to put money into updates with the thought that the new owner might not like what was done. While this is true, he eventually realized that some basic updates were necessary, and ended up having to spend a fair amount of money. Things like removing wall paper & painting, replacing worn, cracked tile in the entry & kitchen, removing pop-corn from ceilings, tiling the bathrooms (replacing carpet), etc. It cost my parents a fair amount of money to do all this work, but it is to be expected as a cost of maintaining the value of a home over time.

  • Ramona @ Personal Finance Today says:

    I have never sold or bought any houses, but this advice does make a lot of sense. I personally can like or dislike a home based on it being clean or not, being uncluttered etc. When you are in the market to sell your home, there’s no room for mistakes.

    • David @ says:

      The first impression means a great deal to any home buyer so it’s best to make it count. Even if you can sell the home without any of the touch ups mentioned, you are going to get a lower offer when your house looks rundown.

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