Are you thinking of selling your home?
If so, it’s never too early to start preparing your property and getting it ready for sale. You’ll want to make a real impact when it goes on the market, so cleaning, gardening, decluttering and tidying are all vital to make sure it looks the best if possibly can. We recommend that you don’t wait until the last minute, start organising things now and you’ll avoid the stress caused by trying to do everything all at once or in a rush when the actual day is looming.
The initial, and often hardest part of preparing to sell your house is disassociating yourself with the home. Learning to let go is difficult, especially when it’s been your home for years and has become part of you and your family. But eventually you’ve got to let go.
Tips to help in this process include removing any personal belongings, such as photographs and special items that contain memories for you. Potential home buyers don’t want to see your family’s personal things in the house, they want to imagine their own there. Removing and replacing anything that you would like to take to your new home is also important so there is no confusion, and the potential buyers won’t think that they come with the house, or imagine them in their place.
When a buyer approaches a property for sale, one of the first things they will notice is the front yard; is it well cared for, are the trees well groomed, is the lawn maintained, are the flowers and shrubs in keeping with the appearance of the property overall? These points are important because a buyer can often make up their mind about a property before even stepping foot in the door, so it’s vital that initial impression is a good one.
Spend some time in your front and back garden, cleaning up the flower beds, tidying up the mulch, mowing the lawn, trimming the trees and shrubs, cleaning deck areas, dusting outdoor furniture and if necessary, paint and fix fences.
Cleaning and decluttering is another very important step in preparing your house for sale. Mess and chaos is one of the biggest turn-offs for buyers. Of course, it is understandable that you will have accumulated a lot of things throughout your life, we all do, but many items have probably outlived their usefulness and it’s better to get rid of them rather than have them stick around just creating clutter.
If you are having trouble deciding what to do with your belongings, we suggest you sort them into three piles; things moving with you, things to donate and things to throw out. It’s then clear what you are doing with each item. Donating items to charity means people can benefit from the goods and clothing you no longer need, and they are put to good use. Holding a garage sale is another great idea, as well as finding a home for things you no longer have a use for, you can also make some money along the way. And have you thought about temporary storage for items that you want to keep but perhaps are too bulky or that you only use at certain times of year like holiday decorations or out of season clothing?
Enlisting help from family and friends is a great way to help make the process of cleaning and decluttering easier. Sharing the workload has obvious benefits but it’s surprising how just having someone to talk to can really help to get on with the job. When decluttering, remember that the clutter didn’t arrive at your house all at once, so it will not leave that way either. Pick a room or an area to start with, concentrate on that and when that’s done, move on to the next.
It’s important to notice the small detail when looking at the overall cleanliness and tidiness of your home. You might not see some of the things because you’ve lived in the house for a long time and it looks normal to you, but a buyer might see it as a disorganised mess or a poorly cared for home.
When cleaning, remember to do a thorough inspection, and wash windows, dust blinds, clean appliances, inspect walls and floors for damage, and check for plumbing leaks and signs of insects and rodents. Spend a few minutes in each room and look carefully and slowly around to make sure you haven’t missed anything.
Another good tip to improve the overall feel of your house, is to eliminate odours. But rather than masking household odours with air fresheners, which can be overwhelming and cause allergies in many people, include freshly cut flowers, the scent of cinnamon or fresh coffee and cookies in the kitchen.
Staging your home is one of the final stages before welcoming potential buyers into the property. This is important for the buyer, you want them to imagine themselves living in your house. Place furniture so that it maximizes the feeling of space and light, remembering how your homes’ rooms flow into each other. If you are unable to achieve the look you are after with your own furnishings, one option is to put your things into storage and hire what you need; furniture, artwork and others décor items, to make your house looks its best.
After you have cleaned, decluttered and tidied up, your home and garden will be picture perfect for the selling stage. Your efforts around the house will be guaranteed to pay off when prospective buyers arrive looking for their new home.
One thing to remember is don’t look backwards. There is no doubt that it is sometimes hard to move on, but thinking positively about your future and not dwelling on the past will make for a better selling experience.
Remember if you need help preparing your home for sale, contact the Grey Army on 13 1198 – we can help with any of the necessary tasks mentioned above, however big or small.