1.  Declutter.  You want to let potential buyers know the home has been well-cared for, and the best way to make that first impression is with a clean appearance. 

○      Box up and store any items you won’t need in the next 1-3 months.
○      Tidy up any “catch-all” areas.
○      Store toys and other miscellaneous items in attractive bins.
○      Consider a yard sale, a donation truck or a hauling company for larger items.

2.  Depersonalize.  Buyers can’t envision themselves in a home where they see too many personal affects that belong to someone else.

○      Clear refrigerator doors, countertops, windows, etc. of pictures, art projects, etc.
○      Tastefully select only a few personal photos and hanging art to keep displayed.

3.  Neutralize.  It’s also harder for buyers to imagine themselves in a space that has been decorated for someone else.

○      Paint any brightly colored walls.  A fresh coat of paint in general goes a long way.
○      Replace necessary accent pieces (rugs, throw pillows, etc.) with inexpensive neutral options.

4.  Landscape.  No professional needed!  Just ensure you have a neat and tidy curb appeal to make a great first impression.

○      Tidy up the lawn – rake, mow, weed, edge, etc.
○      Trim back any bushes and tidy up flower beds.
○      Sweep surfaces such as patios and decks.
○      Remove or consolidate clutter such as bicycles, toys, etc.

5.  Touch-up.  When buyers notice small maintenance items, they wonder what else might be wrong with the house.

○      Fix ripped or dented screens.
○      Fix cracks, dents or chipped paint on walls.
○      Clean or replace worn carpeting.
○      Consider refinishing worn hardwood floors.

Do a final full-house cleaning (mop, vacuum, etc.) just before going on the market and your home will be ready to shine!