Preparing And Staging Your Home For Sale

When you decide to sell your home, the most important thing to remember is that now you are not only a home owner—you are a home seller. You will be competing with other resale homes and brand new model homes for a buyers attention. You also want to see your home sell for the best possible price as quickly as possible. Taking the time to prepare it for sale will pay off in results.

Research has shown that most buyers make a real decision about a house purchase in the first eleven to fifteen seconds of seeing a property. By then they will already have developed a perception of your property that will colour their feelings for the rest of the showing and perhaps dramatically affect their perceived value of the property.

The decision to buy a house is not solely based upon rational factors such as price, location and accessibility to services. It is also an emotional choice. It is a search for a home, a place in which one will find comfort, security and happiness, a place one would want to settle down and live in.

Now is the time to think of your home as a theater. You are putting on a performance, much like staging a play. The scenery must be right, the lighting perfect, the audience comfortable. Marg has expertise in helping you set the stage and in making it easy for prospective buyers to imagine themselves happily living in your home.

Here are some low-cost, high-return upgrades to improve the perceived value of your house or condominium:
“Love at First Site….”
  • Plant flowers, weed and edge gardens. Mulch can look great too
  • Mow lawn and trim hedges and shrubs
  • Clean driveway and sidewalks of dirt, leaves or snow
  • Water the lawn extensively, well in advance of selling
  • Remove old lawn ornaments, toys and play sets
  • Clean and repair rain gutters, missing shingles, shutters and siding
  • Touch up exterior paint or pressure wash if needed
  • Clean out garage
  • Pick up any litter
  • Clean the front door and add a coat of paint if necessary
  • Shine up the mailbox and house number
  • Repair any broken fence boards
“Cleanliness is a Virtue….”
  • Make mirrors glitter, light fixtures shine and appliances sparkle
  • Remove fridge magnets, put away small appliances and move litter boxes out of the kitchen
  • Vacuum, wash and/or polish all floors
  • Clean and freshen bathrooms
  • Clean/shampoo all carpets
  • Clean all windows, walls, doors and trim
  • Clean out the fireplace
  • Think about what a model home looks like – clean, uncluttered, new home aroma, neutral décor
  • Have a clean floor mat at the entry
  • Pay extra special attention to the kitchen, bathrooms and master bedroom
“This Place Looks Neat & Tidy…”
  • Clear all countertops
  • De-clutter all heavy traffic areas
  • Store surplus furniture to reduce feeling crowded
  • Put seasonal clothing into storage
  • Clear halls and stairs of clutter
  • Make all closets neat & tidy
  • (and only half-full, even if this means moving items to another storage area)
  • Eliminate strong personal statements such as personal collections, political, religious, sports or business mementos
“It Certainly is Well Maintained…”
  • Touch up interior paint and paper
  • Repair cracked plaster
  • Tighten door knobs and cupboard latches
  • Oil any squeaky doors
  • Repair leaky plumbing (taps, shower heads and toilets)
  • Repair or replace tiles/seals/caulking/grout around bathtubs and sinks
  • Replace burnt-out light bulbs/install brighter bulbs
  • Clean furnace and humidifier
  • Repair any other minor flaws
“The Presentation”
  • Turn on all lights
  • Open all drapes in daytime
  • Take out the garbage daily, make all the beds, clear dishes away and ensure bathrooms are spotless
  • Play quiet background music or nothing at all. Quiet suggests peace and serenity.
  • Turn on air-conditioning or light fireplace
  • Foster a welcoming aroma and eliminate offensive odours from pets, smoke or cooking.
  • Establish a focal point in each room such as fresh flowers on a dining table, a charming area rug, red geraniums on the kitchen window sill.
  • Keep pets outside during showings (or, better yet, at a friend’s)
  • Have as few people in the house as possible. If you can, be absent during any showings as potential buyers often feel awkward and rush through if they think they are inconveniencing the owner.
RE/MAX four seasons realty limited, brokerage  ♦  67 First Street Collingwood, ON L9Y 1A2  ♦  705-445-8500