The interior with a bid dining room of a modern private house
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Jessica Wilkie

Prep to Sell

Selling your home doesn′t just mean posting a sign out front. There are a lot of preparations you should make to ensure you get the best offer possible. And a fresh set of eyes will help you see things you may be missing. It’s almost never too early to call in a professional for advice on this.

Here are a few things to consider.

Repairs. Just because you’ve gotten used to cracks in the walls or rattles in the radiators doesn’t mean a buyer will be ok with it. Plus, when you sign a contract you’ll be responsible for disclosing any material defects with your place. So, no, you can’t just hope they won’t notice. Do a walk-through of your house and make a list of any and all potential repairs. Prioritize the list according to urgency, budget and your local market.

Improvements. You might also decide to make an improvement or two during this period. It’s a wonder what a fresh coat of paint will do for almost any space. A landscaping spruce-up, even just fresh mulch or new flowers, is usually worth it.

Neutralize. You want buyers to see themselves in your home. Remove collectibles and personal photographs, and replace bold color choices with a neutral palette. “Greige” is the new beige, and whites work well on walls. Don’t forget occasional pops of color for interest. Repainting is relatively cheap and hugely impactful. Refinishing the floors or adding new carpet will also go miles in improving your appeal to buyers.

Purge/Declutter. Do you plan to sell your occupied home? Buyers should see the property, not your stuff. Make sure to remove unnecessary belongings, clear your space wherever possible, and tidy up. Here’s a good time to call in professional help, to give you a fresh set of eyes on your space, advice on what to do, and help with the actual labor of getting things done if needed.

Stage. Once improvements and repairs are made and spaces cleared, it’s time to play dress up. You might be able to work with your existing furniture if its appealing to the market. Most likely at least a few edits will be needed — décor touches to bring out the possibilities in the various areas in your home, maybe a few new pieces here or there to create an appealing environment.

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