Give your House That WOW Factor When It’s Time to Sell

When you decide to move, it is time to get your house ready for a quick sale. Remember that you will never get another chance to make a good first impression on the buyer. That means letting go of your emotional attachments and looking at your home through the eyes of the homeseeker. Even small changes like making minor repairs, putting on a fresh coat of paint and cleaning up the yard can make a big difference in the appearance of your home. Small improvements can translate into increased marketability and the chance of putting more money in your pocket at closing.

Play to the Audience

View your home as a product to be marketed to a target audience. Put yourself in the buyers’ shoes and imagine what they would like to see, and, just as important, what they do not want to see. A lovely chandelier and a beautiful piece of accent furniture are attractive, but personal objects like family photos and religious symbols are distracting to buyers and should be packed away. The key is to allow buyers to picture themselves and their families in the home, and not focus on you and your family. Also, take this opportunity to remove stationary items that you intend to take with you, like window treatments and fixtures, and replace them with attractive substitutes.

Remove Clutter

Clearing away clutter can go a long way in preparing your house for sale. A home free of confusion sends a positive message to homebuyers. Even if your house is small, an organized house shows that you care. More importantly, it indicates that you have taken good care of the house through the years. Arrange shoes, clothing, and dishes carefully, and donate what you can. You are moving, so why not pack up bric-a-brac, books, special holiday dinnerware and seasonal sporting equipment you do not use on a daily basis. Buyers will understand if they see moving boxes neatly stacked in the basement or garage.

Homebuyers love to open cabinet doors and drawers, and you don’t want them to encounter an overflowing mess of junk. One useful trick is to place items like your collection of remote controls and necessary baby items in a box and store them in a closet when the house is being shown to buyers. Also, your house may look better if you remove some furniture to make it appear roomier, so rent a storage unit or contact a moving company that offers storage services. Stash away extra dining room table leaves and other bulky items as well.

Clean Up, Make Repairs and Consider Changes

Clean up and make all the minor repairs you have been putting off. It is too bad that you will not benefit from the new faucet and area rug, but your buyers will love the look of a spruced up and carefully maintained home. Examine your property from top to bottom, inside and out. Replace broken tile, spackle walls, fix leaks and make sure your doors and drawers close properly. Get rid of wallpaper and repaint if your colors make too strong of a statement. Neutral is the way to go to appeal to a broad spectrum of buyers. If your worn carpeting covers wood floors, pick it up and refinish the wood.

First Impressions

Take a good, long look at the entrance to your home. This is where you need to create strong “curb appeal” to attract the buyer. Painting the door and placing colorful pots of flowers around the entry can go a long way in welcoming a buyer. Remove debris, trim bushes, prune trees, keep the lawn mowed and the walkways clear. Think about freshening up exterior paint and trim.

Staging your Home

Now for the fun part of preparing your house for a quick sale. Staging has become all the rage, and with good reason. The idea is to show off the purpose of each room in your home to make it inviting space to buyers. In the Cape May area, chances are you have some homey or Victorian touches that make your décor appealing. Build on that comfortable, welcoming look by setting the dining room table, placing colorful bowls of fruit in the kitchen and leaving “coffee table” books in the living room and playing soft music. Turn your bathroom into a spa with scented soap, candles, cushy towels and pots of moisturizer.

Going the Extra Mile

Emphasize comfort by using organic elements like plants and natural fabrics, and if you have a beautiful view, bring the outside in by opening shades and removing window treatments. Some people like to go the extra mile by baking apples or cookies before a showing, sending a message to buyers that your house is a wonderful place to call home.