Wondering How to Sell Your House?
If you think you don’t know how to sell your house, you’re wrong. Selling a house is a simple matter of cleaning and preparing your house for the scrutiny of Realtors and buyers.
People have all sorts of superstitions about selling real estate, but learning how to sell your house is more complex than burying a religious idol or burning sage in the home — you have to plan carefully and clean up and organize your house in such a way that buyers see the potential in your property.
1. Stop Thinking About Your House As Your Possession
Your new mantra should be: “This is no longer my house, it is a product for buying and selling,” Your personal attachment to your house could be what keeps you from selling it. You start this process by forming a clear mental picture of your house as a commodity, and then you will find yourself letting go of your emotional attachment.
As cheesy as it may sound, you need to harness the power of positive thought by imagining yourself selling your house and handing the keys over to the realtor. While many home sales experts will go so far as to tell you to say a literal “goodbye” to each room of your house, this is less important than your mental state.
2. Get Rid of All Personal Effects
If you’ve ever bought a house before you know the creepy feeling you get from looking at people’s personal artifacts — I’m talking about photographs and trinkets that clutter and personalize your house. Ideally, a buyer should envision their own photos and personal items in your home — how can they do this if your own junk is in the way?
An added bonus of this step is that your house is instantly less cluttered, a factor we’ll deal with more in the next step.
3. Get Rid of All Your House’s Clutter
Simplicity experts and life coaches tell us to get rid of any item that we haven’t used in over a year. You don’t have to go this far to learn how to sell your house, but using it as a guide to what clutter to get rid of is a good thing. You don’t have to waste your unused items — make a donation to a local charity. You can even donate old cars, boats, and large pieces of furniture.
If there are any clutter items that you consider necessary to your daily life, simply put them in a little box or container that you can hide during the open house or private home showing.
4. Attack the Bedroom Closets and Kitchen and Bathroom Cabinets
Have you ever seen the TV shows where they take video of home buyers inspecting a piece of real estate? They dig through everything, but seem to pay special attention to certain areas of your house. The first thing to tackle is your closets and cabinets. Your kitchen cabinets should be organized. You may not think of a potential buyer digging through your spice drawer, but any space in your home is fair game, and buyers look at any and every space to pass judgement on you. Start the process of cleaning and organizing your cabinets and closets by stacking dishes, lining up shoes and clothes in the closet, etc.
5. Place Most of Your Furniture in Storage
We know that home buyers prefer houses with little to no furniture. Unless you are a minimalist, your home probably has more furniture than buyers want to see. Your house will show better if you have fewer chairs, tables, couches, etc.
Take out any pieces of furniture that are older, stained, broken, mismatched, or even any pieces that get in the way of a “clear path” through your home. You don’t have to donate or throw out anything that you don’t want — rent a storage space and hide your unwanted or unnecessary furniture there.
Rooms look bigger with less furniture. One “how to sell your house” tip that you hear time and time again is to put smaller pieces of furniture in your rooms to make them look bigger. A room in a home for sale should have a few pieces of furniture in it to show the room’s “purpose” (bedroom, dining room, living room, etc) but still have lots of room to move around in.
6. Strip Your Home of Your Favorite Pieces of Furniture
Let’s say you have a special piece of furniture that you want to take with you to your new home. Why would you allow a buyer to look at it if they won’t be able to own it? People have a natural tendency to want to own things they see, and you’ll be surprised at how people react to being told “Sorry, you can’t have that.” Store or pack your favorite items and replace them with others if you have to.
7. Make (and Complete) a Punch List
Contractors and home builders depend on a “punch list” at the end of a job in order to make sure they get all the little essential tasks completed. Create a punch list for yourself and start to clean up and complete it. Some ideas for your punch list:
- Make sure every light fixture has a light bulb.
- Put clean bedspreads and sheets on all your beds.
- Repaint your walls a neutral color.
- Fix leaky radiators, faucets, and plumbing.
- Make sure all your doors close fully, as well as drawers and other “open and shut” items.
- Replace any cracked floor tiles or counter pieces.
8. Clean the Heck Out of Your House
- Bleach and clean the grout and tile all over your home.
- Clean and generally “air out” any areas of your home that acquire odor. Bad smells kill sales.
- Replace rugs that are older than one year or worn down.
- Buy fresh matching towels and hang them in the bathroom.
- Wash your windows inside and out with vinegar and newspaper.
- Wax and vacuum your floors.
- Dust every piece of furniture, every ceiling fan blade, and every light fixture. Dust makes things dark and darkness doesn’t sell.
- Polish any chrome surface and clean your mirrors.
Learning how to sell your house is really just the first step — get up and get started right now and your house could be ready for viewing in as little as a week. You don’t have to break your back building additions or restyling your house in order for it to sell — just clean up what is already there. Tired of your house sitting on the market, going nowhere? The above eight steps will get your house sold.
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