5 Simple Steps to Get Your Home Ready to Sell

Is your property ready for prime time?

When it comes to getting your home ready to sell, the little details can often make the biggest difference. Taking a few simple steps here and there can mean a faster sale, more enthusiastic buyers, and an easier sales process, at every step of the way.

Want to make sure your home is ready for showings? Looking to help your listing stand out from the crowd? Here are five tried-and-true strategies to discuss with your agent as you get your home ready to sell:

1.) Depersonalize the Space

One of the most important things you can do to help your home sell is to make it easier for buyers to visualize themselves in the space. In other words, you need to make it so that potential buyers can start to picture your home as their dream home.

More often than not, this is going to mean depersonalizing the space, including taking down family photos, unique pieces of art, sports memorabilia, and so on. You want the home to remain warm and inviting — but you also want to ensure that buyers aren’t turned off by any of your most personal choices. Constant reminders of you can make it more difficult for buyers to see themselves living in the home. At the same time, this may mean making a few simple cosmetic switches, such as painting in a more neutral shade, or replacing particularly unique lighting fixtures or wallpaper choices with more accessible and popular styles.

2.) Clean and Declutter

To get your place ready for pictures and showings, you want it looking its very best. As you get your home ready to sell, your listing agent may offer some suggestions on simple cleaning and maintenance tasks you can do to help showcase your home in the best possible light.

One common step that many sellers take is to declutter their spaces, including living areas and storage spaces, such as the garage, the attic, and any pantries or closets. It helps that you may already be getting ready to move out at this point. This is a great time to get rid of excess clutter, by any means necessary. That could mean trashing items you no longer want, donating goods to local charities, or moving some things into temporary storage, so that your potential buyers can enter a clear, welcoming space.

As you rid your place of excess stuff, this stage of the process is also a good time to really make the home sparkle. This might mean wiping down your counters and surfaces, cleaning the floors, washing the windows, and doing an odor check to make sure the house smells clean and fresh. These basic cleaning chores can really make a difference, and help ensure that your house looks great in photographs, and feels great to visitors.

3.) Make Minor Fixes and Updates

While it can be tempting to ignore minor fixes and upgrades — you are planning to leave the property, after all —  tackling some odd jobs before you go to market can make a big impact on prospective buyers.

Whether you’ve lived in the home for a year or two or decades upon decades, there’s sure to be some wear and tear that you can and should address as you get your home ready to sell. This might mean repainting the walls, getting rid of scuff marks on the floor, repairing or replacing loose door handles or fixtures, patching up broken window screens, making sure that all of your doors and windows open properly, and so on.

Have the budget to make bigger fixes or upgrades, but not sure where to invest for the sake of your sale? This is a great conversation to have with your agent! Baird & Warner brokers are hyperlocal experts who know all about the market trends for your area. Your agent can help make sure you focus on the upgrades, repairs, and projects that will have the biggest impact on your sale, so you can avoid falling into the “over-upgrade” trap that catches many sellers.

4.) Look Into Your Staging Options

When it comes to appealing to buyers, even things like the positioning of your furniture can make a world of difference. Talking to your agent about staging is one of the most important things you can do to help elevate your home, and make for an easier sale.

There are many different types of staging options available, depending on your interests, needs, and budget level. Staging could mean anything and everything from artfully arranging the furniture you currently have, to renting showpieces to display for prospective buyers, to reimagining a room in a different way, such as transforming a bedroom into an office.

Whatever style of staging you and your broker decide on, it could have a significant impact on your sale. A poll by the National Association of REALTORs found that many home pros believe that staging can speed up a sale, increase the likelihood of buyers visiting a listing, make it easier for buyers to visualize themselves in the house, and even bring in higher offers, in some cases.

5.) Consider Your Curb Appeal

A lot of people will tell you that you never get a second chance to make a first impression.

Many buyers will ultimately make the decision of whether or not they’re interested in a property well before they ever set foot inside. To help add a “wow” factor from the moment that a buyer and their broker arrive, consider taking a few simple steps to upgrade your listing’s curb appeal.

Adding to your home’s curb appeal will often entail keeping up with regular lawn and garden maintenance, like mowing the grass, trimming shrubs, and so on. In some cases, it might also mean thinking about making a few simple upgrades or cosmetic changes, or even looking into outdoor staging options — such as hanging plants, adding window boxes, forming a dining area in the backyard, and taking other small steps to help make your home more inviting, outside and in.  

How Baird & Warner Makes Selling Easier

There’s an art and science to selling your home. As the largest independent and locally owned real estate brokerage in Chicagoland, the Baird & Warner family has earned success by putting our clients’ needs first, and always making it easier to navigate the selling process, at every step of the way.

Your Baird & Warner real estate agent is your selling expert and trusted advisor, and can take the responsibility off your plate, managing all the people and moving parts to make sure you get the results you want.

From pricing your home, to getting your property ready to sell, to marketing your listing, to leading negotiations and closing the sale, your agent will be there to make the process easier, at every step along the journey. And with mortgage and title services in-house, our full-service approach can transform an intricate, complex process into one that is smarter and more seamless, so your sale goes as smoothly as possible.

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