Preparing to Sell Your Home and How to Get the Highest Return
By Matt
April 8, 2013

I am often asked in casual conversation or when someone has decided to list their home....what are the most important and cost effective things I can do to get my home sold.

Below are my list of top ideas to make your home shine and what help you and your real estate professional sell your home for the most money in the most efficient amount of time.

1. Lose the clutter! Nothing can clog or narrow a floor plan like a cluttered home. This often times involves moving that item or items of furniture that has sentimental value to a home owner. Also simple things like keeping personal items put away in their respective storing locations, vaccuming carpets and rugs, and removing items from counter tops. This is even more important when your home is scheduled to be shown or you have an open house

2. Pick up the curb appeal! This is one of my favorite and least expensive ways to get your home looking great, plus it's the first thing that people will see when looking at your home. The majority of this can be done over a weekend, and most is DIY friendly. The first item would be to cut the lawn and lose any over grown vegetation. If you do not have a lawn mower or weed wacker a one time "mow and blow" from a garderner should not cost more than $50-$100 on average. This will do wonders for the look and appeal of a home. I cannot tell you how many times I have seen a beautiful home be cast into darkness by weeds, high grass and over all poor lack of consideration for the landscaping. This should also be put into action for the side and rear yards as well and if possible would be to plant new flowers and shrubs. Lastly a simple coat of fresh paint on facia board and accents can really breath new life into a homes exterior look. Some paint, brushes and ladder will make this task doable by just about anyone. Additionally a new stain on a wood fence can have the same effect. Make it a fun weekend activity by paying for lunch and drinks and have your friends come help. Maybe a nice thank your dinner after?

3. Clean, clean, clean! Make sure to wash those windows you have been ignoring, clean that soap scum on the shower door and scrub the toilets. This is again something that is inexpensive and can be done most times in a day or two. Take similar action to the recommendation above and ask your friends for help! Why this may seem like an easy and obviouos suggestion so many people do not take this step and it is detrimental to the sale of their home. 

4. A home that smells good, sells good! I have been selling homes for almost a decade now and I don't exactly know the mental science behind it but a home that has a fresh or pleasant odor really does intoxicate a person and can have a true effect on altering their mood. This may not work on every potential buyer that walks into your house but just imagine the little push it can take to have your home stand out over someone elses. Whenever possible I like to install fresh odors like Febreeze and sometimes even the smell of food like cookies or bread. Again a simple and inexpensive way to set your apart from your competition.

5. Fix the little things! Now depending on the issue at hand this can be more or less complicated and inexpensive. For the purpose of this article I am referring to the "simpler" things. For instance, that window crank with the broken handle? Go to the local hardware store and get it replaced. What might seem like a small issue that you have managed to live with for the past 10 years could be the type of thing that makes a buyer think you aren't taking care of the bigger issues. If you can knock out the little things that people are going to see when they come to your home just fix them now and be thankful you did. It could be the difference in listing to sold!