(Closed) About to put house up for sale, anyone got any tips?

posted 5 years ago in Home
Post # 2
2087 posts
Buzzing bee

Anything you don’t need regularly, pack now and either get a Pod or put in a storage unit. Less cluttered houses show better, and it will save time on packing once you actually sell.

Post # 3
690 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

Clean,  declutter, stage it.  

Post # 4
923 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2015

View original reply
CatyLady:  Try to make sure your paint colors throughout the house are fairly neutral and your “personal” possessions are at a minimum. Home buyers sometimes have a hard time seeing past that stuff. 

Post # 5
928 posts
Busy bee

As PP stated clean and declutter. When my DH and I were house hunting there was one in particular that was so dirty and clearly hadn’t been cleaned in a while. I honestly couldn’t get past it. 

Also, if you’ll still be living in it get rid of some stuff you know you won’t be using. Your rooms will look larger and people can see more potential in each room.

Post # 6
1576 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

Yea – for me it’s the clutter that is the turn off. I don’t mind paint or wallpaper or carpet – you don’t have to make your house sterile looking for it to show well. I don’t mind your style, but I don’t want to see your clutter. It can be really distracting. If there’s so much stuff/furniture in the room that I can’t get a feel for how big it is – that’s bad. And keeping bathrooms clean is really important of course.

I don’t know how people with little kids do it.

Post # 7
47458 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

You’re gong to have to pack up everything at some point anyway, so do some of it now. Pack up things you don’t need, and store them neatly in the basement, a storage room or someone else’s house. It will help your house look more spacious. That includes closets. Thin out your wardrobe.

Walk around the outside of your house and look at it as if you were a buyer. Are there little things that need repair that you’ve been putting off? Fix them. A fresh coat of paint at the entry and a seasonal urn of flowers are very welcoming and tell the buyer that you care about your place and have taken care of it.

Post # 8
224 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

Preparation is the most important part. A properly listed house shouldn’t be on the market for more than a week or two. There are buyers who know exactly what they want and have been waiting, so when your listing pops up with the right specs, they’re ready.

1. Set the right price the first time.
Have the house appraised, maybe twice. Most people price way too high thinking they can do all those price drops, which just raises time on the market and makes the seller look stubborn. Pick a reasonably fair price and just negotiate on the terms (closing costs, which items stay, how much deposit). Real money is always worth more than imaginary money.

2. Have a professional do the painting, or at the very least, use painter’s tape.
There are an insane amount of houses that scream “OMG I have to sell my house so I’m painting all the walls neutral and I’ll save money by doing it myself.” They look good in the pictures but when you go to see the house, the paint is horrible and would have to be re-done anyway. And it makes you wonder what else the seller slacked on.

3. Functional updates, not cosmetic.
When people choose cosmetic updates for other people and not for themselves, price is the main consideration, and it shows. You can’t predict someone else’s tastes anyway. Set a fair price and let them update it if they so choose. You’ll never make back your full investment on a cosmetic update anyway.

(Not deal breakers, but they help)
4. Take pictures that show the flow of the house, so people get an idea of the layout and not just a lot of separate rooms. 25 pictures should be the minimum.

5. Write a solid detailed description without the cliches. None of that “Prepare to be moved… into your new home!” “This house won’t last!” and so on. Someone looking through a lot of listings doesn’t want to read that a hundred times.

6. Hiring a cleaning crew to detail clean. I’ve seen dirty window blinds ruin a sale.

7. Remove anything that screams uniquely “you.” People want to imagine themselves in their new home, not yours, especially “shrine” rooms with religious items or hunting trophies. It happens more than you think.

Good luck!

Post # 10
11517 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: May 2014

View original reply
CatyLady:  as someone who’s been to a lot of open houses recently this is my advice from the eyes of a potential buyer.

Don’t have your closets stuffed with stuff (looks like there’s no storage) but empty closets are equally suspicious, there should be clothing in the bedrooms (on the flip side, I saw a house that had day to day clothes in the front hall closet instead of coats – that was a red flag to me)

Too many scented candles makes me think you’re trying to hide something.  We saw a house that smelled great but they had scented candles burning in every single room!  made us both wonder.

Those are the 2 biggest I’ve noticed in our open house adventures.

Post # 11
2968 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

View original reply
CatyLady:  stage it, declutter, and get rid of a lot of personal effects in favor of more neutral and less personalized ones.

Also, before you even put it on the market I would go to open houses in the neighborhood and see what your competition is. This will better help you price it, stage it, and see what the market is in your area. A lot of the reasons a home stays on the market for too long is simply because the owners and the agents are unrealistic about the market or don’t take the time to make the listing and the house attractive enough to buyers (whether it be simple fixes like paint, or some minor renovations) all the way to asking too much for the home. If you know what the other houses are offering, it is easier for you to know where you stand when it comes to selling your home.

Post # 12
5789 posts
Bee Keeper

Take a ton of photographs yourself and look at them with a critical eye. Rooms look overly full? Pictures hanging crooked or way too many of them scattered throughout? Bookcases filled to the brim and closets stacked to the ceilings? Clean, clear and pack it all away. Too much of everything makes buyers know you may be moving partially due to lack of storage space, so they’ll be in the same boat too.

Make sure all your windows are clean both inside and out and that your kitchen and bathrooms are spotless. Try and get rid of cooking odors before a showing, and make sure all dirty laundry is stored away and not visible.

Sweep your front steps and walks regularly and clear away any cobwebs from your entry.

Fix any squeaky doors and make sure all light switches and fixtures work.


Post # 13
9162 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

Don’t have photos of you and your family on display. Aside from a safety thing you want the buyer to be thinking about their family in the house and not your family. It is about getting them into the mindset of it being their home.

Post # 14
1710 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

View original reply
CatyLady:  declutter! If you have any pets remove them and all their stuff from your home for showings. Clean. And a little fresh paint can do wonders!

  • This reply was modified 5 years, 3 months ago by  _blackbird_.
Post # 15
13561 posts
Honey Beekeeper

View original reply
MsGinkgo:  I was going to say the closets thing, too! You don’t want it to look like there isn’t enough storage.

View original reply
ItWasntMe:  Yes! All of those little weird quirks that your house has — if you can just go ahead and replace burnt out lightbulbs and fix squeaky doors and the like, that will help make your home seem even more move-in ready!

Clean, fresh towels and empty wastebaskets in the bathrooms! I don’t think your house has to look totally like you don’t live in it, but in bathrooms, especially, you want to project a pretty pristine image.

I’m not sure what kind of outdoor space you have, but I’d just make sure that it’s kept up for curb appeal but also so that potential buyers aren’t concerned about maintenance.

 Good luck, hon!!!!

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