- Make the Most of that First Impression - A well-manicured lawn, neatly trimmed shrubs and a
clutter-free porch welcome prospects. So does a freshly
painted - or at least freshly scrubbed - front door. If
it's autumn, rake the leaves. If it's winter,
shovel the walkways. The fewer obstacles between
prospects and the true appeal of your home, the better.
- Invest a Few Hours for Future Dividends - Here's your chance to clean up in real estate.
Clean up in the living room, the bathroom, the kitchen.
If your woodwork is scuffed or the paint is fading,
consider some minor redecoration. Fresh wallpaper adds
charm and value to your property. Prospects would rather
see how great your home really looks than hear how great
it could look, "with a little work."
- Check Faucets and Bulbs - Dripping water rattles the nerves, discolors sinks
and suggests faulty or worn-out plumbing. Burned out and/or low watt
bulbs leave prospects in the dark. Don't let little
problems detract from what's right with your home.
- Don't Shut Out a Sale - If cabinets or closet doors stick in your home, you
can be sure they will also stick in a prospect's
mind. Don't try to explain away sticky situations
when you can easily plane them away. A little effort on
your part can smooth the way toward a closing.
- Think Safety - Homeowners learn to live with all kinds of self-set
booby traps: roller skates on the stairs, festooned
extension cords, slippery throw rugs and low hanging
overhead lights. Make your residence as non-perilous as
possible for uninitiated visitors.
- Make Room for Space - Remember, potential buyers are looking for more than
just comfortable living space. They're looking for
storage space, too. Make sure your attic and basement are
clean and free of unnecessary items.
- Consider Your Closets - The better organized a closet, the larger it appears.
Now's the time to box up those unwanted clothes and
donate them to charity.
- Make Your Bathrooms Sparkle - Bathrooms sell homes, so let them shine. Check and
repair damaged or unsightly caulking in the tubs and
showers. For added allure, display your best towels, mats
and shower curtains.
- Create Dream Bedrooms - Wake up prospects to the cozy comforts of your
bedrooms. For a spacious look, get rid of excess
furniture. Colorful bedspreads and fresh curtains are a
- Open up in the Daytime - Let the sun shine in! Pull back your curtains and
drapes so prospects can see how bright and cheery your
- Lighten up at Night - Turn on the excitement by turning on all your lights
- both inside and outside. Lights add color and warmth and make prospects
- Avoid Crowd Scenes - Potential buyers often feel like intruders when they
enter a home filled with people. Rather than giving your
house the attention it deserves, they're likely to
hurry through. Keep the company present to a minimum.
- Watch Your Pets - Dogs and cats are great companions, but not when
you're showing your home. Pets have a talent for
getting underfoot. So do everybody a favor: Keep Kitty
and Spot outside, or at least out of the way.
- Think Volume - Rock-and-roll will never die. But it might kill a
real estate transaction. When it's time to show your
home, it's time to turn down the stereo or TV.
- Relax - Be friendly, but don't try to force
conversation. Prospects want to view your home with a
minimum of distraction.
- Don't Apologize - No matter how humble your abode, never apologize for
its shortcomings. If a prospect volunteers a derogatory
comment about your home's appearance, let your
experienced realtor handle the situation.
- Keep a Low Profile - Nobody knows your home as well as you do. But an experienced realtor
knows buyers - what they need and what
they want. Your realtor will have an easier time
articulating the virtues of your home if you stay in the
- Don't Turn Your Home into a Second-Hand Store - When prospects come to view your home, don't
distract them with offers to sell those furnishings you
no longer need. You may lose the biggest sale of all.
- Defer to Experience - It is best if you are not home for showings but if you have young children, this is not always possible. When prospects want to talk price, terms, or other
real estate matters, let them speak to an expert - the Realtor.
- Help Your Agent - Depending on the showing instructions set up with your agent, buyer's agents may call you directly to make an appointment to show your home. That way, if the seller's agent is on other appointments, you don't miss out on important showings. If you are not home, Realtors will gain access with a secure keybox which records the Realtor, the time and contact information. It is a pretty efficient system however you may end up just getting home and a Realtor shows up to show your home. This may be inconvenient but if possible allow them in. People have to see it to make a decision.