Information for Sellers

Getting the House Ready to Sell

sold sign

Disconnect your emotions

Whether you’re buying or selling, it’s never wise to let your emotions take control. When you’re selling, you need to consider your home a house instead, a commodity for which you are looking to get the best price in a certain time frame. It’s important that a potential buyer see the house as their potential home, but if you still consider it your home, it shows and can slow a sale.

Creating anonymity

If there are new homes for sale in you area, pay them a visit and notice how sparsely furnished they are. You’ll not find many family photos on the wall or other personal touches. These are homes anyone could live in. And that’s the idea.

Creating that same anonymity for your home is one of the keys to selling it. You don’t want potential buyers to see it as your home, but their home. So store away photos, trophies, collectibles and all the knickknacks. And don’t just generate additional clutter by storing them in a closet or the basement or garage. Consider renting a storage space for a few months.


For many, the comfortable clutter of their home is what helps make it home. You may be so accustomed to your clutter that you simply don’t notice it. But you can be sure a potential buyer will, and your clutter will make it hard for them to see your house as their home.

Clutter, clutter, everywhere. It’s in closets, drawers, on shelves, in the attic, basement and garage. Clear it all, creating as much empty space as possible. Then step back and look at your home from a buyer’s perspective, inviting friends and your Realtor to do the same and point out areas that still need help.

Clutter in the kitchen

Your kitchen is a great place to start your anti-clutter campaign. Start by taking everything off the counters. Put the toaster and other small appliances in a cabinet until you need them. And if you can’t find a place in cabinets, it’s a sign that it’s past time to clean them out. A great way to start is simply getting rid of all the dishes, cookware and utensils that are rarely used. If you can’t part with them, put them in a box to go into a storage unit.

It’s a natural tendency for homebuyers to open all drawers and cabinets, especially in the kitchen. They’re calculating how their belongings will fit there, and if all they see is your stuff jammed everywhere, it’s impossible to envision their own belongings there. Clean out junk drawers, plan menus to use as many canned goods as possible, and make sure under the sink is clean, empty and in good repair.

Repair costs

Chances are you’ll need your money for repairs and improvements to your new home, so don’t spend money remodeling or other expensive projects on the home you’re selling.

And don’t run up credit card bills or take out any new loans. Keep in mind that part of selling one house is getting ready to buy another, so you’ll want to be cautious not to do anything that will hurt your credit scores or ability to qualify for a mortgage.

Plumbing and fixtures

For Realtors who watch prospective buyers checking out a new home, one thing usually becomes readily apparent. They don’t know what to do, so they essentially play with things, flicking light switches, flushing the toilets, and turning faucets on and off.

Make sure everything your prospects are going to touch sparkles – light switches, faucets and toilet handles. Most of the time you’ll be able to make them sparkle with little effort, but if that’s not possible, buy new ones. They don’t need to be expensive, but they do need to shine.

Also check to make sure all faucets and toilets are in good working order and that porcelain isn’t stained. You might even consider having professional cleaners give your house a one time once over. You could well be more than pleasantly surprised at the results.


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