Selling your House: 7 Things to Do Before you List

Erin Ogden Oxender, REALTOR Author - Erin Ogden Oxender

"I am nervous about selling my house. Where do I get started? What things do I need to repair or do? I’m scared it won’t sell. When to talk to an agent?"

Does this sound familiar? Of course it does! Selling your house can be overwhelming, especially for first time sellers. The good news is that you won’t have to worry anymore. You’ll be able to sell your house easily in Columbus Ohio if you follow these simple 7 tips.

Tip #1 Put yourself into the shoes of potential buyers.

The simplest and most effective way to prepare your home to list is by putting yourself into the shoes of potential buyers. Imagine you’re looking for a home and walk through your own home with a pen and paper and make notes. What do you see when you drive up? What’s your first impression? What is it about your home that stands out, or what turns you off? The answers to these questions are going to help you prepare to list your home. 

Tip #2 Declutter and deep clean your house

Nothing will turn away a potential buyer faster than a bad smell or a cluttered room. Before you list your home, declutter your house by packing non-essential living items. You should also consider doing a deep clean of your home. This includes everything from mopping the floors to cleaning the curtains. Whether you do this yourself, or hire a cleaning service, it is important for your house to be fresh, clean, and free of clutter. This might seem an insignificant change, but it will help greatly to sell your house easily.

Tip #3 Make small changes, not big upgrades

Many first-time sellers mistakenly assume it’s the big changes that sell the house easily. With costly upgrades, sellers often end up putting more money into their house than they will get back. Instead of a complete remodel, you should instead invest in smaller updates that will help you sell. This can include things like fresh coats of paint, updating pulls and knobs, and changing light fixtures in bathrooms and kitchens. Small changes make for big results. 

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Tip #4 Check curb appeal

When buyers drive up to your home, the first thing they see is the front of your home. Now is the time to make a big impact with some small changes. Keep the lawn trimmed, don’t let the shrubs grow too high, and keep weeds out of the flower garden. Paint the front door a bold shade of red or blue that goes with your house but makes it stand out at the same time. Pressure wash the driveway and walkway, and clean up the house. You want buyers to see it shine from start to finish. The first impression sets the tone for the rest of their tour of your home.

Tip #5 Take good pictures

Having high-quality photos of your home is an essential part of the selling process. Now more than ever people are searching for homes online and doing online tours. If you don’t have well-done pictures of your house, then it may get overlooked by buyers. 

Tip #6 Stage your home

Before putting your house on the market, you should “stage” your home. While this may sound difficult, it is actually a very simple process. It includes steps like getting rid of excess furniture, removing personal items, and adding fresh flowers to rooms. You should also make sure to open your blinds and turn all your lights on. Buyers like bright spaces and it makes it easier to see your home. Your agent is an expert at this process and will help ensure your home looks perfect for its first showing. Just remember that details sell homes. 

Tip #7 Set a realistic price

Pricing your house right is one of the most important steps of the selling process. It is also one that can be the most daunting, especially for first-time sellers. In order to do this, you have to look at comparable sales in your neighborhood. Also, check the housing market trends in your area to see if prices are moving up or down. This information will help you accurately decide the right price for your house.

Don’t worry, your house will sell

Rest assured that if you follow these tips you will greatly improve the probability to sell your house quickly and profitably. If you’d like more information on selling your home or feel like you need professional help, we have professionals that will be happy to assist you. Also, don’t miss our Ultimate Guide to Selling a Home in Columbus Ohio, where you can find more information.