Preparing Your Home for Sale: Small Improvements Make Big Impact

In real estate, a good first impression pays off. Sellers can walk away with thousands of dollars more if they make their home look as good as possible. Appearances may make the difference between selling quickly and waiting months for an offer.

Before showing your home, consider these tips:

· Create curb appeal. Buyers are making a judgment about your house as they pull into the driveway. Hide unsightly hoses and garbage cans, rake leaves, trim the lawn, plant flowers, clean windows, paint the front door, and open the curtains.

· Put your home’s best face forward. A well-maintained house gives buyers confidence that the property is structurally and mechanically sound. Shampoo carpets, clean drapes, replace shower curtains, dust light fixtures, clean kitchen appliances, and change filters. Fix leaky faucets, oil squeaky hinges, tighten loose cabinet knobs, replace burned out light bulbs, patch holes in the walls, and apply touch-up paint.

· Declutter your home. Giving the impression that there’s ample storage space will enable buyers to visualize their own belongings in the home. Pack excess photos, get rid of countertop clutter in the kitchen and bathrooms, unstuff closets, and clean the garage. Rent storage space to hold belongings you remove, or have a garage sale.

· Create a cozy atmosphere. Burn scented candles or bake cookies to eliminate pet or cigarette odors, display fresh flowers, put out new hand soap and clean towels, play soft background music, and, depending on the weather, build a fire in the fireplace.

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