Your Home Sale Checklist
Are you selling your home? The list can be long, the work can be intense, and you know that some day soon, all of that work will pay off. Whether you’re investigating gutter replacement or looking at the best planter boxes for your balcony, this home sale checklist will help you navigate the months and days before your home sale.
Outside In: Begin With Your Landscaping
How many times have you driven or walked past a home, only to be enchanted by its gardens? A glorious garden can make your home sale go a lot more smoothly. Here’s what to do on the outside of your home to attract potential buyers.
A few months before you start the sales process, do the following:
- Prune any trees and shrubs that look untidy or that could be at all dangerous.
- Fix walkways and make sure that there are no tripping hazards or damaged concrete or asphalt.
- Consider whether you need to repair or resurface your driveway.
- Repair any structures that you have on the property, or remove them if they’re not being used. That rundown old shed isn’t adding to your garden decor.
- Look at the drainage in your garden. Are there areas with huge puddles that need to be managed?
- Add a few distinctive perennials that will enhance the beauty of your home. For instance, if you’re thinking of selling your home in the early spring, plant crocuses and snowdrops in the fall. If you’re selling during lilac season, add one of these beautiful and fragrant shrubs.
- Aerate your lawn, fertilize or mulch, and get it ready to look good.
Right before you show your home, make sure you:
- Clean up the front porch or steps. Make it look less lived-in and more tidy.
- Rake leaves and clean up blossoms.
- Mow the lawn.
- Touch up the decor around your door or porch. Add flowers in an urn or add new potted plants to your planter boxes. If it’s winter, add seasonal plants and greenery. Be subtle: add just enough to make the home feel welcoming, and not so much that it feels overdone.
Around the Outside of the Home
After your prospective buyers have come down the front walkway, they’re ready to enter your home. First, they look around. They look at your siding, they look up at your roof, and they swing the front door open. All this time, they’re gathering impressions about your home maintenance. A tidy, well-maintained home will impress buyers before they even walk in the front door. How can you make them feel comfortable?
A few months before the sale:
- Focus on the front door. Repaint it, repair it, and make sure it swings easily. It’s a visitor’s first view of your home.
- Clean your siding. Mossy or algae-covered siding isn’t attractive. Siding that looks like it will last for years gives your potential buyers a feeling of comfort.
- Clear out your gutters. Keep mulch around your trees, not in your drainage system. If you want to add to your home value, consider gutter covers, especially if you’re planning a gutter replacement.
- Replace or repair warped, sagging gutters.
- Check your roof for missing shingles or areas where flashing has been damaged. If your roof is badly damaged, it could be a turnoff for buyers: consider whether roof replacement is worth the investment.
- Fill in damage around window sills, and fix any broken windows. Install caulking if there are obvious drafts.
- Repair or replace exterior lighting, or add pathway lighting if you feel that it’s lacking. Make sure that your home and garden feel safe.
A few days before the sale:
- Clean your windows.
- Replace light bulbs near the front door if they’re burnt out.
- Add pillows and other subtle decor items on the front porch.
- Make sure that the gutters and downspouts aren’t dripping or overflowing.
- Clean off the front door, and make sure its paint job is still outstanding.
On the Inside
As visitors enter your home, you want them to feel immediately comfortable and visualize themselves in the space. How can you help them feel like this is their future home?
A few months before you show the house:
- Check the foundation. One of the biggest turnoffs for potential buyers is the idea of a huge repair, and foundation concerns can be serious. Take preventative measures to prevent foundation problems as well, such as gutter cleaning, covers, and gutter replacement.
- Control the temperature. Make sure that heating and cooling systems are repaired and in peak condition.
- Paint the walls and fill in any holes. Peeling paint makes prospective buyers worry that there are other problems with the house as well, and new paint looks tidy. Make sure that your new paint color is neutral so that people can imagine themselves in the home.
- Declutter. Get rid of items you won’t be bringing with you. This makes your home easier to stage.
- Replace handles, faucets, and hinges: any little repairs that you’ve been putting off.
A few days before you show the house:
- Dust, scrub the floors, and make everything look clean. Hire a cleaner to do a deep clean if you need to do so.
- Make it light. According to The Brel Team, “It’s easy to forget about all the bulbs that have burned out over the years, but you want your home to be as bright as possible.”
- Remove the clutter. Place it in storage, in boxes in the garage, or anywhere that a visitor won’t see it. Make your home look more like a hotel and less like a working, living, and playing space.
- Make your house smell good. Either simmer something like cinnamon on the stove, or make sure your house has a fresh, neutral smell.
- Clean the kitchen, and clean it again. Make sure that the inside of the cupboards, the sink, and the fridge look move-in-ready.
- Make the bathroom look deluxe. Add plush towels, luxurious candles, and a variety of soaps. Give it an aura of relaxation.
- According to Forbes, when you’re showing your house, “Close the toilet! When it comes to both showing and photographing your home, this little trick can make a surprising difference.”
- Move living room furniture around and remove bulky items, making it look like a space that’s ready for entertaining.
- Add plants to your living spaces so that the interior looks vibrant.
At Harry Helmet, we’re dedicated to keeping your home beautiful and functional. Talk with us about adding new awnings, replacing your roofing, or transforming your gutters with Gutter Helmet by Harry Helmet. Schedule an appointment today.