You’ve probably heard and read lots of advice on how to prepare for, and ace, showings on your home. We’ve got lots of advice on this topic, and we encourage you to talk to us, talk to your friends and family with experience selling a home and Google the heck out of it.
What we haven’t come across is a whole lot of advice on what NOT to do while your home is on the market. Besides the list of things you’ll want to do to prepare for showings, there are actually a few things you should avoid. You don’t have to treat your home like a cloistered nunnery while it’s on the market – but you should live like your residence there is on borrowed time. When your goal is to sell the home to the highest, most qualified bidder – it helps to remember you’ll be moving on to greener pastures soon, hopefully with a check in hand.
1. Take your butt outside.
Whenever you’re in the mood to light up is the privilege of homeowners… but not for sellers. When your home is on the market, step out on the deck or the front stoop to light up. When you have your carpets cleaned before listing the house, consider having the furniture steam cleaned and the drapes dry cleaned as well.
2. Make sure you can see the forest… through the weeds.
No matter what time of year your house is on the market, don’t let the yard go. That might mean shoveling. It might mean extra watering or if the rain is falling often, extra mowing. And if you have flowerbeds or a spot on the porch for a seasonal pot of mums, don’t neglect these opportunities to help your home shine.
3. Don’t avoid regular maintenance simply because you’re on the way out.
If it’s loose, askew, dusty/musty/crusty or making an odd noise – do something about it. Potential buyers will notice deferred maintenance, and they’ll adjust their offer accordingly.
4. Don’t assume buyers can see past your clutter.
Clutterbugs are sneaky little insects. They hide in closets, under sinks, in drawers, in the pantry… And don’t think potential buyers won’t look in all of those places. Being serious about decluttering means getting rid of a percentage of your stuff altogether. And if your inner hoarder just can’t stand to pare down, rent storage space for the duration of your sale. It’s that much less to pack once your place sells.
5. Don’t ignore showing feedback.
You can’t do anything about the busy road two blocks away, and you probably aren’t planning to change the exterior of your home from forest green to white, but if you keep hearing that the mustard yellow walls in the kitchen are offensive to the eye – it might want to invest in a can of paint.