If you’ve been reading my articles the past few weeks, and if you have been implementing my advice, you may be tiring of the work it takes to ready your home for sale. You are likely asking, “Is all of this really necessary? Can’t we just stick a sign in the yard and my home on the internet and get it sold?” You may also wonder if I really know what I am writing about and be tempted to list your home with an agent who will just gloss over all these details and take your house straight to market.
So how important is attention to details? With the growing popularity of HGTV, attention to detail in prepping your home before you list is, in fact, critical. If you are planning to be a home seller, pay careful attention and what you will see is that, thanks to HGTV, buyers have figured out that they can be very picky. Buyers are seeking “perfect” homes and are willing to pay for them. When they find perceived deficiencies, they tend to discount heavily for them if they even make an offer at all. If your goal it to sell your home in a reasonable amount of time and at a reasonable price, it is well worth your while to work toward achieving the HGTV standard.
For the past two weeks I discussed the fine points of what makes kitchens and bathrooms sing on resale. Today I will cover some of the more general points. It is wise to remove all wallpaper from your home, particularly is it is more than a couple years old. Wallpaper can add a great sense of style but it is very personal and most buyers look at buying someone else’s wallpaper as similar to wearing someone else’s wedding dress – it is unlikely to fit and they just don’t want to do it! Replace any non-neutral wall-to-wall carpeting with neutral carpeting. Colored wall-to-wall carpeting is a thing of the past and quickly dates a home. Check out your lighting fixtures and replace any clearly older or dated ones – the “big box stores” have a terrific selection of inexpensive lighting and nothing updates a home faster than new lights in hallways, foyers and at the front door. Be sure all of your light bulbs are working – Pittsburgh can be very gray – you want all the light you can get! Clean fingerprints from switch plates and up the sides of the staircase as well as around door handles. Carefully vacuum all heating vents (you’d be surprised how dirty they can look) as well as the grills on bathroom exhaust fans and the bottoms of refrigerators. Touch-up paint nicked woodwork and scuffed trim. Clean out your closets so that it appears that you have plenty of storage space! For more ideas on how to get your personal home in the best shape for sale, please feel free to give me a call.