10 Ways to Make Your House More Appealing to Buyers

You have one chance to make a good first impression. First impressions can be lasting. Appearances matter. Let those two sayings become your mantra as you prepare to sell your home. Follow the 10 suggestions listed below to ensure that your home sparkles. Every minute you spend sprucing up your home will be worth it, either in terms of increased sales price, a quicker sale, or both.

1. Get rid of clutter

Throw out or file stacks of newspapers and magazines. Pack away most of your small decorative items and family photos. Clear countertops as much as possible. Store small appliances out of sight in the kitchen. Store out-of-season clothing to make closets seem roomier. Clean out the garage. Create the impression that your home is move-in ready.

2. Let in the light

Wash your windows, skylights and screens and open your drapes and blinds to let more light into the interior.

3. Keep everything extra clean

Keep everything extra clean. Wash fingerprints from light switch plates. Mop and wax floors. Clean the stove and refrigerator. Wash the woodwork around windows and doors and do touch up painting as needed. A clean house makes a better first impression and convinces buyers that the home has been well maintained.

4. Make minor repairs

Make minor repairs that can create a bad impression. Small problems, such as sticky doors, torn screens, cracked caulking, or a dripping faucet, may seem trivial, but they'll give buyers the impression that the house isn't well maintained.

5. Change light bulbs

Put higher wattage bulbs in light sockets to make rooms seem brighter, especially in dark rooms. Replace any burned out bulbs.

6. Clean the yard

Tidy your garden. Cut the grass, rake the leaves, trim the bushes, and edge the walks. Put a pot or two of bright flowers near the entryway. Set the stage for the new buyer.

7. Get rid of smells

Clean carpeting and drapes to eliminate cooking odors, smoke, and pet smells. Open the windows to let fresh air in the home.

8. Check out your driveway

Patch holes in your driveway and reapply sealant, if applicable.

9. Do your yardwork

Clean leaves and debris from gutters.

10. Make the first impression

Paint your front door or buy a new one if needed. Polish your front doorknob and door numbers. Remember, you only have one chance to make that first impression!

Information from REALTOR® Magazine Online


More Information for Sellers

The Process of Selling Your Home

Evaluating Your Home

Understanding How Real Estate Agents Work

Why Not For Sale by Owner (FSBO)?