Preparing Your Home For Sale

Spring is in the air and ‘tis the season for home listings to flood the local real estate market. If you’re considering listing your own home, you’re probably also considering what you may have to do to prepare your home for sale. After all, you’ll want to make sure all of your home’s best features are highlighted so as to be both memorable and impressive to perspective homebuyers.

Where to begin with your preparations? Here are some tips to get you started:

  • If you’ve ever watched any of the real estate shows on HGTV, you’ll already know to remove clutter and any personal items that may distract buyers from picturing themselves living in the home. Also, keep in mind that today’s homebuyers are busy and will appreciate any major repairs having been taken care of before the ‘For Sale’ sign goes on the lawn.
  • By the same token, be sure to complete any improvements that are already in progress before listing your property. Buyers will have a hard time picturing what you are in the process of doing and may worry that the work won’t be completed by the time the sale takes place.
  • Consider hiring a professional home inspector. An inspection in advance of putting your home on the market will ensure that any serious deficiencies are taken care of or at the very least, won’t come as a surprise to you or your buyer.

CMHC provides a terrific tool called the Homeowner’s Inspection Checklist for home owners preparing their house for sale.

This practical, easy-to-follow guide for homeowners will help you identify common house problems and deal with them. In it, you will find illustrated how-to tips offering effective solutions for every room of your house. The following are some of the topics that are addressed in this handy checklist:

- Check Your House’s Curb Appeal

- Will Your Roof and Chimney Pass Inspection?

- Examine Your Walls

- Now, Let’s Go Indoors

- General Interior

- Kitchen and Bathrooms

- Basement

- Garage

Once you have taken care of any problems or repairs you are ready to add the final touches that will create that ‘show-home’ feel:

  • Open all drapes, blinds, etc. and turn on lights to make the house bright.
  • Be mindful of cooking and pet odors
  • Fresh flowers have a big impact, making your home feel fresh and elegant
  • Set your thermostat at a comfortable level
  • If possible, be prepared to remove pets from the house when potential buyers come for a viewing
  • If its winter, consider leaving pictures out of your home in the summer
  • Leave copies of your utility bill out for buyers to assess the overall cost of owing your home
  • There’s nothing more welcoming then the scent of freshly baked bread. Buy frozen, unbaked rolls and pop them in the oven before the viewing. Your home will smell wonderful and youll have a snack to come home to. Just be sure to turn off the oven before you leave!

As the company’s first employee, Jennifer has been a Licensed Mortgage Associate since 2004, but her current role is not focused on mortgages. She is the resident blog writer and…

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