Selling a home can be a pretty stressful event. You may have an agent working on getting the house sold. But there’s a few things you should be doing as well. Honestly, there’s a few things you probably should have done before you even interviewed an agent. So what is involved in getting a home ready to show before putting it on the market?
Getting a Home Ready to Show Before Selling
The steps are actually pretty simple, but do require some work on your part. You constantly hear agents such as myself talk about the stress of a move and that’s part of the reason you should hire an agent. The reason for this is that when it comes to the curb appeal and home presentation, we can’t do that for you. We can give you tips, we can even help guide you. But it’s up to you to get it done. Things to consider:
- Become a prepper, it’s never too early to start getting ready.
- Get a home inspection, be in the know!
- De-clutter, clean up, and work on curb appeal.
- Start taking photos.
Become a Prepper, it’s Never too Early to Start Getting Ready
I’m sure we all remember those shows where people stashed away ammo and freeze-dried foods to get ready for the apocalypse. Well, notice that there’s no sign of the end to come. However, they were putting in that work before the sign came so they wouldn’t be TOO LATE IF it did come. Approach selling your home the same way. Don’t wait until you are about to put it on the market to get it ready. Become a prepper, start taking the steps NOW before you even have a listing agent lined up to sell the house. It takes time to get a home ready to show, the more you have done before the agent even walks through the better.
The sooner you get started, the easier it will be for your agent to get your house sold.
Get a Home Inspection, Be in the Know
I can’t stress this part enough. IF I SEE your home inspection, I am required by law to disclose material defects I see on it. I always recommend you get a home inspection, but I also recommend you do this part before you hire an agent. You are required to disclose anything flawed in the home that could affect a buyer’s decision to purchase that house. If I know about it, I will disclose it. And if your agent is willing to not disclose it even if they know about it… Well I’d start asking yourself what other corners they are cutting and what laws they are breaking that are not in your favour. Get an inspection, I’ll about guarantee the buyer will get one before they buy, you don’t want any surprises. And when it comes to the repairs, make sure the repairs are legit and keep the receipts.
De-clutter, Clean up, and Work on Curb Appeal
I have a previous article on what fixtures are and how they affect selling your home. I’d recommend giving it a read by clicking here. Now is the time to get something removed if it’s something you want to keep. The space it was in will need to be filled or repaired, better to get that done now than when it comes time to list as well. Also, start de-cluttering. Get rid of stuff you don’t need anymore, clean up things that have been gathering dust, and start making that house look like HGTV just put it together last night. As for curb appeal, I can’t stress it enough. Last month, I wrote a guide on curb appeal. You can read about curb appeal and how to increase it on a budget by clicking here.
Start Taking Photos
Here’s the thing about lighting, it changes EVERYTHING. Here’s the other thing about lighting, the best light comes from the sky. However, the sky tends to also provide too much light. So as soon as you get your curb appeal in order, get started on photos. Overcast days are awesome for great pictures of the home. But it could take days, weeks, or in some areas months before the weather schedules a time for you to take a good picture. So getting your curb appeal done early, and then heading outside and taking photos every morning, afternoon, and evening until you get the perfect conditions for a great picture are the way to go.
The picture below is my own home, taken with my phone using the same settings for each photo. On the left is a photo I took in the afternoon on a sunny day. On the right is a photo I took right after a storm around the same time of day. Notice that the sunny photo is kind of washed out of colour and more grey. But the overcast photo has deeper colours and more definition in details because of the lighting. As an added bonus, the wind was blowing after the storm to get the flag waving.
It’s time to accept that soon this will not be your home. Remember that when the buyer is walking through your home the first time, you want them to picture this house as their home. So when staging keep that in mind. De-clutter enough to try to make the house look like it is ready to be lived in, but also not leaving signs of the specific people who currently live in it. And this does include your pets! If I can see someone else living in the house I’m thinking about buying, I can’t imagine it as home and I will probably pass. Remember, it’s never too early to start. The sooner you get started, the easier it will be for your agent to get your house sold.