Are you getting ready to sell your home in the upcoming weeks or months? The process may seem overwhelming, but getting your home prepared and staged is crucial for allowing buyers to imagine themselves in your home. If your home is on the market, but has not sold yet, try to do a few tips things to freshen up your home. There are plenty of small, easy things to do that go a long way in the mind of a buyer.
Here are some suggestions and ideas to improve your home’s appearance and help you prepare to sell it faster!
THROUGHOUT THE HOUSE:
- Open the draperies, pull up the shades, and let in the sunlight.
- Create a positive mood. Turn on all lights, day or night. Open the curtains during the day.
- Install higher wattage light bulbs to show your home brightly—in its best light.
- Remove all clutter from each room to visually enlarge them.
- Create the impact of spaciousness.
- Keep your home dusted and vacuumed at all times.
- Have a family emergency “game plan” to get the home in order quickly if necessary.
- Air out your home one-half hour before the showing if possible.
- Lightly spray the room with air freshener so that it has a chance to diffuse and air before the buyer arrives.
- Shampoo all carpets and vacuum them daily.
- If the carpet does not clean up well, you should replace it.
- Improve traffic flow through every room and create a feeling of spaciousness in every room by removing unnecessary furniture, knick knacks, hobby items, children’s items, etc.
- However, try to avoid creating a “sterile” looking environment.
- If you have numerous family photos, put them away until your home is under contract. Perspective buyers will feel more like it can be their home if they aren’t aware of your family photo memories.
- Rent a storage area for these items or have a yard sale.
- Straighten, tidy, and remove unnecessary items from all closets. Put unnecessary items in storage.
- Fix the front door bell.
- Invest in a new doormat.
- Make sure the front door, storm door, screen door, etc. work wonderfully.
- Create the feeling of a spacious entry area by using decorating accents, mirrors, rugs, etc. and by removing all unnecessary clutter.
- Wash all windows, inside and out.
- Curtains should be fresh, clean, and attractive.
- Clean all light bulbs, light fixtures and chandeliers to brighten the home.
- Remove all smoke odors, pet odors, and odors resulting from hobbies.
- Paint all inside walls with off-white paint. Use two or more coats to cover bold, bright or dark walls.
- All walls should be painted, not just washed. This will brighten the home and make it look bigger.
- Repair or replace all doors, closet doors, and/or windows and screens so that they open with ease.
- Repair or replace banisters and handrails.
- Water and prune all plants.
- Use plants in transitional areas of your home between inside and out.
- Either get rid of dying plants or keep them out of sight.
- Remove any excess extension cords and exposed wires.
- Open doors to areas you want the potential buyer to see such as walk-in closets, pantries, attic, basement, etc.
- Close all other closet doors and cabinets.
- Repair or replace loose or dangling wallpaper.
- Clean and shine all accessories (door knobs, knockers, lamps, mail boxes, address numbers, etc.)
IN THE KITCHEN:
- The kitchen should always be kept spotlessly clean.
- Microwave a small dish of vanilla twenty minutes before the showing and place it in an out-of-the-way place in the kitchen.
- Expand your counter space by removing small appliances.
- Highlight an eat-in area in your kitchen with a table set for dinner.
- Remove all grease from range hoods, ovens, stovetops, walls, etc.
IN THE FORMAL ROOMS:
- Set the scene by setting the table. Highlight the potential of your dining room by setting a grand dining table.
- If you have a fireplace, highlight it in your decorating.
- Clean rubbish out of the fireplace and keep it clean in the winter.
IN THE BEDROOMS:
- Create a master “suite” affect in your decorating.
- Make sure that beds are made and the linens and curtains are fresh and clean.
- Organize your closets, remove unnecessary items, and put them in storage.
- Straighten, tidy and remove unnecessary items from all closets. Create the feeling of spacious closets. Put all unnecessary items in storage or invest in under-the-bed storage boxes.
- Remove posters and adhesive from walls and doors and putty any holes resulting from nails or other mishaps.
- Depersonalize teenagers rooms and decorate in a neutral temperament.
IN THE BATHROOMS & LAUNDRY ROOMS:
- Bathrooms should always be kept spotlessly clean.
- Do not leave towels around and wipe down the shower areas after each use.
- Repair or replace broken tiles on walls, floors or in showers/tubs.
- Recaulk if the caulking is not sparkling white.
- Put out fresh towels and decorative soap for showings.
- Replace all toilet bowls if you cannot get them spotlessly clean.
- Replace shower curtains and keep them clean.
- Replace the washers in faucets and remove rust stains from basins.
IN THE BASEMENT AND ATTIC:
- Remove all unnecessary items from the attic, basement, garage, tool shed, and especially from the storage area if you have one.
- Clean or paint the basement walls and floor.
- Make the most of your attic’s potential, if applicable.
- Make the attic as pleasant as possible by airing it out, and decorating if possible.
- Add visual appeal to stairways, especially in unfinished stairways to the basement.
- If the basement shows any signs of water or structural damage it may be necessary to obtain a structural engineer’s report.
- Regardless of the season, tackle spring cleaning. Clean everything in your home from top to bottom, from the attic to the basement.
OUTSIDE OF THE HOUSE:
- Keep the yard mowed, raked, fertilized, and watered at all times.
- Remove all toys, bicycles, tools, unsightly patio furniture, trash, etc. from the yard.
- Trees and shrubs should be pruned and trimmed.
- Lawns and gardens should be weeded at all times.
- Use flowering plants to dress up the yard, walkways, and patio.
- All hoses and garden equipment should be neatly out of sight.
- Outdoor furniture should be kept clean and/or repainted if necessary.
- Firewood should be neatly stacked or out of sight.
- Mail boxes should be evaluated with a critical eye.
- Paint and repair the mailbox or replace it if necessary.
- Make all those minor repairs to the exterior.
- Porches, steps, verandas, balconies, patios and other extensions of the house should be kept uncluttered, swept and in good condition.
- Paint all entrance doors.
- Shades and awnings should be in good condition. Replace if the color has faded. Remove windsocks.
- Create an outside living/dining area with furniture and plants.
- Highlight your pool area, water garden, etc. with lighting, benches, planters, flowering plants, etc.
- Take nighttime photos of decorative yard lighting systems.
- Take pictures of your flowering mature landscaping now if you are planning to sell your home later in the season.
- Display these photos in your home in the wintertime.
- Clean, repair and paint all gutters and downspouts.
- All roof shingles, tiles, etc. should be secured or replaced. If the roof leaks, fix it.
- Make sure the garage door opens easily. Fix and paint the garage door if necessary.
- Paint chimney and replace broken bricks or stones.
- An investment in painting your home can really make the difference between “turning on” the buyer and sending up a red flag about the condition of the home.
SOME FINAL THINGS YOU CAN DO TO HELP YOUR HOME SELL QUICKLY:
- Arrive at an equitable asking price using an appraisal.
- Don’t be afraid to accept the first offer.
- Obtain a floor plan of your home, if possible.
- Assemble house records for buyer perusal.
- Provide a map of the area and highlight special-interest items.
- Only consider written offers by lender-prequalified buyers.
- Enlist the services of a professional marketing agent such as The Young Team to market your home online, in newspapers, and through engaging and modern marketing tactics.
November 4-6: LEGO KidsFest @ The I-X Center
The LEGO KidsFest makes a stop in Cleveland bringing all of the creative hands-on, minds-on fun of LEGO building and experiences together.
November 11-13: Fabulous Food Show @ The I-X Center
Cleveland’s largest presentation of food, fine art, breweries, wineries, restaurants, and vendors all under one roof with a wide variety of live demonstrations and hundreds of companies showcasing specialty foods, drinks and culinary gadgets.
Nov. -12-Dec. 20: The Polar Express @ Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad
Take the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad on a trip with The Polar Express to create wonderful memories with family.
November 18-20: I-X Christmas Connection @ I-X Center
Explore over 600 booths filled with crafts and unique gifts. Enjoy live festive entertainment, visit with Santa, and reminisce with movies from Christmas past.
November 19: Captain Neo’s Adult Swim @ Greater Cleveland Aquarium
The Greater Cleveland Aquarium presents its annual Christmas Ale & Cider tasting with a series of rambunctious tasting parties featuring a different theme each night.
November 19: Crocker Park Tree Lighting @ Crocker Park
Kick-off the holiday season at Crocker Park with performances from community groups and a lighting ceremony.
November 19: Winter Wine & Ale Fest @ Playhouse Square
Experience holiday treats and year-round favorites from more than 30 local craft breweries and wineries and some of Downtown’s best restaurants.
November 25-27: Larchmere Holiday Stroll @ Shaker Square Neighborhood
Spend the Thanksgiving holiday relaxing the holiday weekend stopping at 45+ independent stores and services on Historic Larchmere Boulevard.
November 25-December 23: Country Lights @ Lake Metroparks Farmpark
Take a wagon ride through light displays to the Equine Center where you’ll see operating model trains, meet farm animals and enjoy presentations in the arena by the Holiday Horses.
November 25-31: Glow @ Cleveland Botanical Garden
Glow is Cleveland Botanical Garden’s winter spectacular and one of Cleveland’s most celebrated holiday traditions.
November 26: Winterfest Downtown Holiday Lighting @ Public Square
Take in the magic as you experience Downtown’s vibrancy through free horse and carriage rides, the tree-lighting ceremony at Public Square, a fireworks show and more.
Nov. 25-27 and Dec. 1-4, 8-23, 26-30: Deck the Hall @ Stan-Hywet Hall & Gardens
Bring the whole family to enjoy one of Ohio’s largest and most spectacular holiday traditions with over 900,000 lights and the historic Manor House decorated and inspired by the theme of “A Storybook Christmas.”
Tobogganing: Mill Stream Run Reservation, feel the rush of adrenaline this holiday season as you speed down a 700-foot ice chute at speeds up to 50 miles per hour
Walk All Over Waterloo: Waterloo Arts District, Cleveland’s Collinwood Neighborhood, first Friday of each month
Free First Saturdays: Cleveland Museum of Contemporary Art, Cleveland’s University Circle Neighborhood, first Saturday of each month
Walkabout Tremont: Cleveland’s Tremont neighborhood, second weekend of every month
Think & Drink with the Extinct: Cleveland Museum of Natural History, Cleveland’s University Circle Neighborhood, third Wednesday of each month
Third Fridays: 78th Street Studios, Gordon Square Arts District, Cleveland’s Detroit Shoreway Neighborhood, third Friday of each month
Cleveland Stories Dinner Parties: Music Box Supper Club, Downtown Cleveland, every Wednesday