1. Clutter and Dirt – clear the clutter out and have your home professionally deep cleaned.
2. Converted Rooms – if the formal dining room has been turned into office space or a playroom, return the space to its original sale. If you leave the room as is, it forces buyers to use their imaginations, which is a no-no. Swap in the old furniture that was previously there, and neatly store the pieces you’ve moved in a designated space such as your basement out of buyers’ immediate eyesight when entering your home.
3. Your Personal Interests – Remember you want buyers to see you, not you and your family. Pack up your collection of memorabilia from your life, remove family photos, and de-personalize the space.
When it comes to artwork, put away anything violent or controversial.
4. Crowded Countertops – put away the small appliances on kitchen counters, items on ledges, and shower nooks filled with personal-care items. Products can be put in a basket that you can hide in a closet when not using them. Remove everything from those areas before listing photographs are taken.
5. Remove artificial arrangements and plants – they collect dust and may remind young buyers of Grandma’s house.
6. Holiday Decorations – be sure to keep decorating to a minimum. Potential buyers may not celebrate Christmas. A cheerful wreath would be sufficient.
7. Custom Window Treatments – It doesn’t matter how much money you spent on custom draperies, valances and sheers. Simply put, buyers dislike them. This is a hot topic on home-related sites including Houzz.com and TheSpruce.com. Window treatments obscure the windows, limit the view and natural light, and collect dust.
It’s better to put up an easy-to-install roller shade.
8. Area Rugs – your home needs to look spacious as possible for buyers. rugs chop up space visually. Have them cleaned, wrapped, and rolled for your move.
9. Odors – avoid relying on scented candles or plug-ins, which suggest you are trying to cover up unpleasant odor. Keep in mind that buyers may not enjoy the same scent as
To eliminate cigarette odor, you will need to wash the walls and ceilings and prepare to paint. Home Depot has products that will remove smoke residue, grease, and grime.
Have carpets steam-cleaned and drapes dry-cleaned. Wash curtains and blinds with some vinegar and water. Upholstery will need to be professionally cleaned by a company that is IICRC – certified for the job.
Have any furniture that is shabby or ruined removed from the house.
10. Darkness – A dark house is unwelcoming. Have plenty of lights on in every room.
11. Pets – it is always best to have pets removed from the home before a showing.
Cats need to be put in a cat carrier. To help with fur clean-up, purchase a robotic vacuum cleaner.
12. Showings –You want buyers to linger and see themselves living in the home. You might consider monitors or spy cams to watch and listen to buyers. Realtors are advised to ask the seller whether they have surveillance technology in their homes. Agents may want to disclose this to their clients.
13. Wall-to-Wall Carpeting – Buyers these days want hardwood floors, even in starter home. If you have hardwood underneath the carpet, try to remove it.
14. Brass Fixtures- Shiny yellow brass has been unpopular for a while. If you need to replace fixtures, choose nickel, chrome or stainless steel in your choice of finish.
15. Paint Colors – remember that neutral colors sell the best.