7 Simple Steps to do Before Selling Your Orlando Home
Owning a home means that your are constantly doing maintenance as well as home improvements. There’s always something that needs to be repaired, replaced or touched up. It’s lucky for us that these things happen at different times throughout the year, although sometimes it feels like everything happens at once.
Personally, I tend to procrastinate on the small things until there’s a whole bunch of little things that need my attention. These little things typically don’t get done until my wife decides to have people over the house. It seems that once I have a deadline for my to-do list, everything gets done in the same day.
When you’re selling your Orlando home however, you should keep it in tip top shape at all times, even the little things. Research has shown that you will not only get more money for your home but it will actually sell faster if you follow the steps that I’m about to outline for you below.
1- Cleaning and De-cluttering: This is absolutely the most important thing you can do to improve the overall appearance of your home. As a matter of fact, if you can only do one thing on this list, this should be it. It’s hard for buyers to see themselves living in the home if it’s filled with wall-to wall stuff everywhere. I would start by moving any large items into the garage that are making the house look smaller or just seem out of place or in the way. After the big stuff is gone, it’s time to clean like you’ve never cleaned before. I’m not talking about your routine cleaning, I mean deep cleaning everything including cabinets, walls, carpets, ceiling fans, fixtures, and whatever ever else can be cleaned.
Removing personal items like family portraits is also a good idea so that potential buyers can envision how there things will fit into a space. Also, you should lock up any guns, medicine and valuables. Assume that every door and every drawer will be opened up by a stranger.
2- Maximize Your Curb Appeal: That old saying ” never judge a book by it’s cover” doesn’t apply when selling Orlando real estate. One saying that does come to mind however is “the perception is the reality”. That means that whatever people perceive to be real is actually real to them.
The front door should make a statement by looking sharp and freshly painted with a color that pops. Keep your lawn and shrubbery perfectly trimmed and plant a few colorful flowers near the entrance. You should also pressure wash the entire house if possible or at the very least, the front.
3- Fix It If It’s Broken: Assume that aprospective buyer will notice every detail. Don’t leave anything to chance, fix that leaky faucet or cracked window. If buyers notice that little things are in disrepair, they will automatically assume that the regular home maintenance has been neglected. The last thing buyers want is to move into a home then have to make a bunch of small repairs to it. You should also take into account that buyers will tend to over inflate the price of repairs which may cause them to put in a lower offer.
4- Fresh Paint: There’s nothing like a fresh coat of paint to give your home a facelift. Painting will give you by far the biggest bang for your buck. It’s relatively cheap, and makes the biggest impact on the overall appearance of your home. Stick to neutral colors like white and off white. This will give it a clean elegant look and can be easily painted over by the new buyers if they wish.
5- Make It Smell Good: Sometimes real estate agents will bake fresh cookies during an open house so that when you walk through, it makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside. You don’t have to go that far or you’d be baking cookies every time there’s a showing. You should however, make sure that there aren’t any undesirable smells in the air like animal odors. Make sure that the house smells fresh and remove any evidence of pets like litter boxes, pet beds, etc if at all possible. It’s also a good idea to take the pets with you during showings. If that’s not an option, then I would suggest keeping them in the garage or a crate during showings.
Cigarette smoke is also a big one. I’ve had clients not like a house solely because it smelled like cigarettes. If someone in the house is a smoker, I would highly recommend telling them to smoke away from the home from now on. Smoke tends to attach to curtains furniture and carpet. Unfortunately, getting of smoke odors takes a lot more work, like having your carpets, furniture and curtains shampooed.
6- Windows: You don’t need to replace your windows unless they’re in bad shape. You should at least make sure that they are spotless inside and out. The same goes for the blinds and curtains. If they are in rough shape, consider replacing them or if you can’t afford it, just remove them all together.
7- Lite Staging: This is an important one. I’m not saying that you should hire a professional stager to come in and re-furnish your whole house for the purpose of selling it. As an Orlando listing specialist, I also have experience in staging homes by using the existing furniture and other items in your house to make it look it’s best for potential buyers.
By following the steps outlined above, you will put yourself ahead of the game when it comes to getting your house sold fast for the highest amount possible.