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House Prep

How do I showcase my home to help it sell?

Think of the old—but all too often true—adage, “presentation is everything”. When you really think about it, your home is like most things you buy in a store every day. The way it looks, smells, “feels” to a buyer can go long past making a good first impression. It goes into making a memorable impression. So there are several things you can do to spark and keep a potential buyer’s interest.

1. USE COSMETICS WISELY

You may need to paint the outside. Change walls to more neutral colors inside. Customers need to be able to imagine their furniture in your property. That dark red wall you find so cozy may start to close in on them in minutes. 

2. IF IT’S BROKEN, FIX IT

Even simple repairs left undone can make a prospect question what’s wrong with the rest of the house. For instance, loose bricks on exterior stairs set a bad precedent. That non-working ceiling fixture you’ve learned to live with could reflect dimly on the rest of the house. You get the picture.

3. GET RID OF CLUTTER

A potential buyer wants to see the house, not your whatnots. Make the place as “open” looking as possible. Rent a storage unit if necessary to really pare down. The home should be easy to move through to give a sense of flow and accessibility. 

4. BRIGHTEN THINGS UP

A well lit room looks bigger and simply makes people feel better. Think about changing the light bulbs to higher wattages. Use pink tinted bulbs if you really want to impress your “guests” ; they are most flattering and will help prospects feel good about themselves while on their tour. Bring extra lamps into a dark room, too, so that no room seems closed in. Also, be sure to open curtains and doors between rooms.

5. PROVIDE VISUAL CUES

Provide visual cues as to how the rooms might be used. Leave a computer on in an office nook. Have quiet music playing in the den. An open book on the bedside table. And an old stand buy: cook some brown and serve rolls in the oven just before an open house. It makes a house smell like home.

6. ELIMINATE UNWELCOMING ODORS

Just as a pleasant smell can make people feel at home, an unwelcomed one can drive them away and leave an unsavory memory. Be sure there are no pet smells, garbage smells or overwhelming perfume odors from scented candles, potpourri or even toiletries throughout the house. Too much of a good thing is a bad thing, too.