According to the money experts at Time Magazine, this year is a good year to sell your house. With credit becoming more accessible and home values rising, many renters are entering the buyers' market. If you're considering selling your house soon, here are a few tips for making it more marketable.
Spruce Up the Lawn
Curb appeal is an important factor in selling a home, so your lawn and plantings should be mowed, edged, weeded and generally cared for before the first potential buyer even drives by to take a look. Avoid ripping out plantings or chopping down trees unless they are dead or diseased, as this will leave an ugly scar. Should you decide to have trees trimmed, make sure that whoever does the work leaves plenty of foliage-bearing branches behind, as a stark trunk can look awful for several years.
Fix All the Minor Problems
From that dent in the wall from the doorknob to the switch that is installed upside-down, those viewing the home will notice these little details. The same can be said for burned-out bulbs in the attic or sagging ductwork in the basement. Take a weekend and fix all of the tiny problems you've been putting off, as this will help how your home is perceived.
Update, Repair or Replace Your Window Treatments
Blinds, shutters and shades are normally considered part of the home, so you'll likely be expected to leave them behind. For this reason, potential buyers will definitely be noticing if your cats have destroyed them or they're damaged and coated in dust. For example, shutters in Las Vegas can be scorched by the bright sun, while window treatments in Seattle may be damaged by the salinity of the air. Inspect these items and have them repaired or replaced, if needed.
Be Aware of How Your House Smells
If you smoke, scrubbing the upholstery and carpets is a great first step. You'll also need to wash down your walls and ceilings with a mild cleanser and air the house out very well, including running the AC or furnace to clear out the ducts if your home has a forced-air system. If you have pets, be certain that any urine stains have been completely cleaned out of the flooring and not just covered up with nice-smelling cleaners. Some homeowners also like to bake chocolate chip cookies or light a fire in the fireplace before showing the house, as these scents are generally considered welcoming and pleasant.
Remove Some of Your Belongings
It's hard for potential buyers to get an idea of how large storage space is if it's packed to the walls. This applies to kitchen cabinets, bedroom closets and the storage locker in the garage. Reduce the amount of possessions you're storing and displaying to help your home look larger. If you have an over-abundance of furniture, sell it or store it elsewhere. You're selling the space, so showcase it to its best advantage.
Remove Any Potentially Offensive Items
While you may not think twice about your reproduction of a famous nude sculpture, the sight could offend others. You may also want to pack up any erotica on your bookshelves and take down religious or political items. You want everyone who views your home to feel comfortable, and you will have no idea what their beliefs may be.
Scrub the Whole House until It Shines
Cleanliness cannot be overstated. You will want to attack dust, dirt, grime, pet hair and fingerprints on every surface. Potential buyers will notice these things. If you need help, considering hiring a maid service to assist you.
Making your home more marketable takes some effort and planning. By following these tips, you can get your home ready to be seen in its most positive light.
About the Author: Lizzie Weakley is a freelance writer from Columbus, Ohio. She attended college at The Ohio State University where she studied communications. Aside from writing, she enjoy the outdoors and long walks in the park with her 3-year-old husky Snowball.
The information in this article is credited to the professionals at Sunburst Shutters, who specialize in window shutters in Las Vegas, Nevada.