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5 Easy Ways To Prepare A Home For Sale

By Stefan Walther | January 1, 2023

5 Easy Ways To Prepare A Home For Sale

For most of us, a home is our largest possession and the biggest single investment we will ever make. To prepare this large item for sale can seem daunting, but it doesn’t need to be. Here are five easy ways to get started.

Set aside just a few hours and all these simple tasks can be quickly completed. Even if you don’t intend to list and sell your home, you may find it gratifying to get this stuff done and improve, even slightly, the comfort and ambiance of your day-to-day living environment.

The first two highlights relate to another article here on the Market Insider, “Staging A Home: Should You Do It?”

1. Neutralize And De-Personalize — Remove and hide away personal items like family photos, hobby displays and material, pet paraphernalia. Buyers need to be able to picture themselves living in your home, which is extremely difficult if they see lots of personal items, or items that relate to a very particular interest or hobby.

2. Declutter — If it’s small and loose and taking up space, then store it away. Cell-phone cords, magazines, TV remotes, tissue boxes, toothbrushes, shampoo bottles, fridge magnets, etc. Toss them in a drawer or cabinet, put them in a closet. Again, for more on this see “Staging A Home: Should You Do It?”

3. Dust — Sounds simple but it’s good to do a “deep dust.” Get into the corners of rooms, clean them out. Wet a cloth and wipe down the face of cabinets and interior doors, especially any raised panels that may have been collecting dust for decades. Run a Swiffer along the tops of door and window frames, as well as along the tops of high-hanging light fixtures, especially the large blades of ceiling fans. Ditto for any venetian blind, with its abundance of horizontal slats, such notorious pesky dust collectors. Check and clean the screens of the exhaust fan in the kitchen and in the bathroom, they could have horribly caked-on dust as they are often sucking air and sucking dust, adding moisture to make sure it sticks. While you may be able to ignore all this dust, a prospective buyer may see it all and become turned off, they could wonder what other parts of the home may have been neglected.

4. Minor Maintenance — How many times have you walked past the same light fixture that has one or two or all bulbs burnt out? Swap them out, also make sure they all have matching brightness as today’s LEDs come in “daylight” and “soft” and otherwise, so mixing and matching does not look the best either. Tip: Select “soft” for a nicer, calmer, soothing ambiance. Other very minor maintenance may include fixing a sticking closet door, a broken window latch, an electrical socket that no longer works.

5. Paint And Seal — While the end result of a beautifully and freshly painted room, or entire home, is extremely gratifying, we here at absolutely detest the process, find it boring, and usually end up with paint all over our faces and arms and the ceiling and floor, and sometimes the cat. But we recommend, at the minimum, some strategic quick patching of small holes, doing some paint touch-ups and blending where needed. Or do more if you enjoy it, or if you have more patience than us. Or hire a professional, they don’t cost too much. The same goes for the deck and for the driveway — if they appear weathered or faded, give them a fresh coat of seal. Either buy the supplies and do it yourself, or hire a pro for a couple hundred bucks.

5 Easy Ways To Prepare A Home For Sale

These five easy ways to prepare a home for sale are relatively small and inexpensive chores that can have a big significant impact on how a prospective buyer sees, how much they desire, and how much money they would like to offer for, your home.

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