Preparation is Key to Selling Your Home

Selling your home doesn′t just mean hiring a trustworthy Realtor. Preparation is key to ensure you get the best offer possible in the shortest time.

Repair. Just because you’ve gotten used to the cracks in the walls and the rattles in the radiators doesn’t mean a buyer will too. If you have hardwood floors that need refinishing, be sure to get it done — hardwood is a huge selling point. Buyers like to snoop around, so be sure to fix any sticky doors or drawers as well. Finally, don’t forget to address any issues with the exterior — fences, shingles, sidewalks, etc. After all, without curb appeal, some buyers may not want to see the inside.

Neutralize. You want buyers to see themselves in your home. If your living room has lime green shag, wood-paneled walls, and all your collectibles and personal photographs, this will be much harder for them to see themselves living there. Try replacing any bold color choices in your floors and walls with something neutral that appeals to the most amount of buyers — beiges, tans, and whites. Repainting and re-flooring will make everything look fresh, and help prospective buyers imagine all the possibilities.

Stage. Once your house is clean and updated, it’s time to play dress up. Home stagers can add minor details and décor touches that will bring out the possibilities in the various spaces in your home: lamps, mirrors, throw rugs and pillows, flowers, decorative soaps and towels, patio furniture. Home staging can be particularly useful if your home is especially old or if the exterior looks dated. Think of it as showing your home in the best light for the next owner — if it’s done right, you notice the home, not the staging.

Wisconsin-based freelance writer and blogger passionate about lifestyle, real estate, personal finance, and home/life organization.