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For Sale By Owner - Helpful Hints
Increase Your Home's Curbside Appeal
Your Home's Exterior
Your home's exterior is the first thing a potential buyer sees, when visiting
your home. The following tips will help you increase your home's curbside appeal
and create a strong first impression to potential home buyers.
- Replace missing slats, stakes and posts.
- Repair broken hinges and paint or stain the fence if necessary.
- Mow, trim and fertilize the lawn.
- Weed flower beds and replace dead plants and trees.
Driveway, Garage, Carport
- Clean up grease or oil spots on concrete surfaces.
- Make sure the garage door opens freely and the automatic door opener is working.
- Provide an unobstructed view of your home from the street by not parking cars, boats or other vehicles in the driveway.
- Polish door handles and door knockers.
- Replace worn or broken items, such as an unsightly mailbox or rusty doorbell.
- Be sure porch lights are working and add welcoming features such as a new door mat and flowering plants.
Siding and Trim
- Consider painting the highlight features of your home, such as trim work, shutters, gutters, downspouts and railings.
- If necessary, add a fresh coat of exterior paint to the exterior siding.
- Remove debris such as tree branches and leaves.
- Straighten the TV antenna.
- Make any necessary repairs to worn shingles or cracked surfaces.
- Flowering plants and outdoor furniture add appeal.
- Remove any unnecessary items such as gardening equipment.
- Tidy any visible items, such as an outdoor grill or barbecue.
Add Housewarming Appeal
Your Home's Interior
Experience shows that creating a housewarming feeling inside your home increases
its desirability. View your home with a critical eye. Clean, complete minor
repairs, and add finishing touches.
Doors and Windows
- Consider adding a fresh coat of paint to your front door.
- Polish brass fixtures and be sure door locks work properly.
- Oil hinges to both doors and windows.
- Keep stairways tidy and secure handrails.
- Repair or replace bent or damaged screens and window glass.
- Cut back outdoor plants that restrict natural light.
- Keep windows clean and tidy with draperies firmly affixed and in proper working order.
Floors and Carpets
- Repair or replace missing or damaged tile, hardwood, vinyl and baseboards.
- Steam-clean or shampoo carpets.
- Secure loose carpeting and replace damaged areas.
- Be conscious of odors caused by dampness, high-traffic areas or pets.
Closets and Storage Areas
- Ample storage space increases the desirability of the home.
- Keep closets tidy.
- Discard any unnecessary items and consider storing those you do not use frequently.
Bedrooms and Living Areas
- Keep living areas clean and inviting.
- Arrange furniture to allow a spacious atmosphere.
- Make beds, arrange couch cushions, dust shelves, vacuum carpets and touch-up walls with paint or spackling as necessary.
- Wallpaper should be clean and adhere smoothly to the walls.
- Finishing touches such as flowers or candles add to the home's housewarming appeal.
Kitchens and Bathrooms
- Clear counters, drawers and cabinets of unnecessary items.
- Clean soap dishes, mirrors, faucets and appliances (inside and out).
- Store cleaning supplies and hang freshly washed towels.
- Be conscious of odors caused by dampness, hampers, garbage and various foods.
Counters and Cabinets
- Store infrequently used counter-top items to allow a spacious look in the kitchen and bathroom.
- Keep drawers and cabinets tidy and organized.
Garage or Workshop
- Items should be neatly stored in shelving or wall units.
- Allow appropriate space for the homebuyer to visualize their vehicle or workbench.
- Consider moving excess or over-sized items to mini-storage.
Keep Your Home in Working Order
Mechanical and Electrical Fixtures
Increase your home's chance of being sold by ensuring that the mechanical and electrical components are in working order.
- Be sure light switches, lamps and fixtures (inside and outside the home) are working properly and all light bulbs have appropriate wattage.
- Remember, bright light can make a small space appear larger.
- Softer light can provide a warm, cozy atmosphere to empty spaces.
- Re-enamel, patch or replace badly chipped or stained fixtures.
- Repair noisy toilets and faucets that leak or spray water.
- Ensure that sprinkler systems and outdoor faucets are working properly.
Heating and Cooling Equipment
- Ensure that heaters and air conditioners are working properly.
- Clean floor and wall ducts.
- Check batteries in smoke detectors.
- Be sure security systems are working properly.
Appeal to the Homebuyers' Senses
Tips for Showing Your Home
Once you've prepared your home for sale, keep a checklist of items to help you showcase your property to potential homebuyers. Remember that your home will be judged not only on its outward appearance, but also on the feelings it evokes in those who view the property.
- Use light to showcase your home.
- Open draperies in the daytime and turn on lights (day and night) to accentuate a cheerful atmosphere.
- If you have a fireplace, burn a Duraflame log.
- Remove any potentially offensive posters or signs.
- Consider playing soft background music while people tour your home.
- If there is exterior noise, such as traffic or nearby construction, work with your sales associate to schedule showings around noisy times of day.
- Grinding fresh lemon in a garbage disposal or boiling cinnamon sticks can add a clean, fresh scent.
- Candles, pot pourri and flowers look nice and smell pleasant.
- Lingering scents of strong-smelling foods, smoke or pets may be aired out prior to showing the home.
- Your home should appear livable.
- Potential homebuyers may like to sit in a living area and visit with their sales associate.
- Baking cookies or bread before showing the home adds a pleasant scent to the home.
- Adding to the hospitable atmosphere, potential homebuyers may also appreciate a cookie or lemonade.
This page developed by Emmett Dalton -Broker/Owner of Dalton Realtors for those who wish to try and sell their property on their own.
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