Here’s some expert advice on what to do now.
Whether you’re planning to move to a larger home for your growing family, downsize or relocate for work, the process of preparing a home to sell can be a lot of work. Making a plan for all the decluttering, repairs and updates can help in the process – especially if you start the preparations several months from your expected listing date.
To help with the home selling process, we asked a few Long & Foster agents for tips on what you can do now to get your home looking its best and ready to list in the spring. Start by making your to-do lists and breaking the items down into bite-sized tasks so you don’t feel overwhelmed. Work with your real estate agent now to get their suggestions on what needs to be done, set priorities and then focus on accomplishing one task at a time.
Agent Terry Rader of the Alexandria/Kingstowne, Virginia, office added that you’ll want to start now to plan for any big exterior repairs needed to the siding, roof and paint. For his clients to get a perspective on upgrades and other improvements done to nearby homes, Rader encourages them to visit other open houses in their neighborhood.
Go beyond decluttering. From your closets to your kitchen cabinets, clear out and discard items you have not used in a year or store them out of site. This will make visitors focus more on your home rather than on your possessions. “It’s OK to have things in closets,” said Jill Daily of the Blue Bell, Pennsylvania, office. “It just needs to look well-organized.”
Freshen up. “On one of the first warm spring days, open the windows to let in the fresh air,” said Brian Reed of Long & Foster’s Avalon, New Jersey, office. “After being closed-up all winter with the heat on, let in the spring breezes to freshen your home’s interior air.”
Paint high-traffic areas. “Put a fresh coat of paint in neutral colors on walls,” said Daily. “Especially on the walls that take a lot of abuse from pets, children and furniture.”
Display a few potted plants or flowers. “Flowers and plants catch the eye, so they should be strategically placed as accent points in the home,”said Daily. “Adding white lights on plants, such as ficus trees, can show off a room’s beautiful crown molding and other features.”
Spruce up your curb appeal. “Power-wash the outside of the house, including the trim, sidewalks and driveway,” said Reed. He added it’s important to clean and put out warm weather outdoor items such as awnings and deck furniture to highlight your outdoor space.