Sonya Leonard

Sonya Leonard

Your Statesville NC Real Estate Resource

What do I need to do to prepare my home for sale?

j0399695 You made the decision to put your home on the market so that you can move forward with your plans. Maybe you are relocating, moving up to a larger home, downsizing to a smaller home or just selling it all to go travel the world!  Whatever your reason, you need to get your home SOLD to do it. 

One of the first steps is to take a good look at your home from a buyers perspective and see what you can do to make it look it’s best.  I know this can be a hard thing to do because we are all comfortable in the space in which we live but we have to put on some different glasses when showing it to the general public.  The buyer for your home may not like that vibrant pink in your little girls room or like the safari theme throughout the house or the porcelain cat collection perched on every shelf in the house.  Remember, this is your style, not theirs.  They key is to make your home as neutral as possible to appeal to as many buyers as you can.  You need a big pool of buyers to get the best price in the end. 

Here are some helpful tips to preparing your home before selling:

1. Get a POD or storage facility and some boxes and start packing.  Go through your home and pack up anything and everything that is not currently in use.  Declutter-Declutter-Declutter.  Remove all the personal photos (just keep a couple framed ones out for staging), clean off all shelves and leave just a few items for decoration.  Pack up clothes you are not using, games, shoes, toys and other small items.  Go through the kitchen and pack up all dishes and small appliances you are not using, go through the garage, shed and attic.  Go through every room and pack it up!  After all, you are moving!  Label everything for easy access and get it out of the house. 

2.  Remove any extra furniture that may be cluttering the rooms.  You want the space to look as large as possible without looking sparse.  Take out extra chairs, desks, bureaus and beds and stage the room to look simple yet classy.

3.  Paint walls in a neutral color.  Stick to muted tones and cover any bright pastel colors or lighten up very dark rooms.

4. Clean the house spic and span.  Clean the windows, baseboards, floors and light fixtures.  Get rid of all the dust bunnies we all collect.  Change the air filter and clean the vents and don’t forget the ceiling fans.  Pressure wash outside the house, the driveway, porches, decks and anything else that needs it.

5. Spruce up your landscaping.  Especially after the winter months, you will need some new mulch, pull the weeds and add some flowers to fit the season.  Mow our grass and keep it looking nice.

6.  Take a good look at your front door.  Does it need painting?  Do the fixtures need replacing?  This is the first impression buyers will have and it really needs to shine.  No spider webs, clutter, bugs or anything else that will distract or give a negative impression before they even get inside your home.

7. Clean out your refrigerator (yes, they do look), your oven, microwave and cook top.  Make them sparkle.

8. Make any repairs that are obvious and known to you.  Fix leaking faucets, broken cabinets, missing trim, sticking doors, loose toilets, roof leaks, pet damage and anything else you know should be fixed and would show up when a home inspection is done.  Pay close attention to plumbing, electrical and HVAC issues.

9. Concentrate on the bathrooms.  Sparkling bathrooms are a must.  Make sure your shower curtain is clean and the bathtub spotless.  Store away as much as possible and keep the countertops cleaned off.  Find a place to put dirty towels out of site.

10.  Make your kitchen a showplace.  This is THE most important room in the house as most people spend most of their time here.  Make sure everything is neat and tidy, clean off the countertops, clean out the cupboards and drawers (again…they will look), scrub the floor, arrange the pantry and add some decorator touches to spruce it up. Put out some nice dishes to stage the table. 


I know this list seems like a lot and it is, but if you are looking to avoid low ball offers on your home and want to get the best offer, your home needs to look its best.  You are going to be competing against other homes that have been staged and you need to measure up.  Buyers will seek out the problems in your home in order to justify reducing the offer price and you need to give them as little ammunition as possible.




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Sonya Leonard –Keller Williams Realty – Mooresville NC.  The Home Style Team provides free access to individualized home searches for all homes in Statesville, Mooresville, Troutman, Lake Norman and the entire Lake Norman Area.  Explore buyer and seller reports, community resources, new home communities, and be sure to sign up for instant alerts to help find your dream home.  Let Sonya help you INVEST in Real Estate and your Future! (704) 450-0588.

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