10 Ways to Prepare Your Home for Sale

10 Ways to Prepare Your Home for Sale

Are you ready to sell your home? If so, then you need to get prepared. Making a few minor touch-ups to your house can go a long way towards making a good impression for a potential buyer. Below is a list of items you can do to prepare your home before you put it on the market.

1. Clean
Clean your house from top to bottom. Dust the fan blades and wipe down the base boards and don’t forget everything in-between. Make sure your appliances have been wiped down and your windows are clean and free of finger prints. If you are too busy to stay on top of things while your home is listed, consider hiring a cleaning service.

2. Smells
Keep an eye out for smells and eliminate them immediately. Clean the litter box more than usual to avoid any unpleasant odors from your furry friends. Spray the house with Lysol or Febreze daily or use a plug-in air freshener or candles to maintain a pleasant smell. Just remember to stick to very neutral smells like linen or cotton, versus the more fragrant smells. You may love the smell of Hawaiian Breeze, however a potential buyer may be sensitive to smells and this may cause them to sneeze or possibly even leave your house. Also, refrain from cooking items that may contain an odor that lingers. These foods may include: bacon, fish or fried foods.

3. Clutter
De-clutter your home. You want buyers to focus on how awesome your home is, not how messy it looks. Remove piles of shoes from the entry, that stack of mail from the kitchen table and anything else that detracts from your home’s features.

4. Colors
You may love your dramatic red dining room, however it could be a turn off for a potential buyer. Re-paint each room in neutral tones like tans and whites that will allow buyers to focus on each room of the home, not the color of the walls.

5. Decor
To help potential buyers imagine themselves in your home, get rid of any art or decor that might turn people off who have different tastes. Items that are usually ok are: classic candle sticks, landscape paintings, neutral rugs or chairs. However, your zebra print leather couch may need a slip cover before showings.

6. Light
Before each showing, open all the windows to let natural light into each room and add lamps to area that are dim. A bright and cheery room will look bigger and is more inviting.

7. Closets
Storage space is a huge selling point in a house and if your closets are packed or unorganized it will be hard for a buyer to see what space is available. Invest in boxes, dividers and other organizational items to de-clutter your closet.

8. To-do List
Tackle your honey-do list as soon as possible as buyers will notice them and they will distract them from the value of our home. Set aside a weekend to tighten loose doorknobs, fix the leaky faucet and paint over the scuff marks. All of these little things will add up to more value in your home.

9. Faux Renovation
Small little touches can make a huge difference in a room. Replace an old ceiling fan or outdated lighting. Check all the faucets and if they are worn or calcified consider replacing them. Grease the hinges to avoid squeaky doors and address any old or beat up furniture. Consider removing it or covering it up with a comfy blanket or slipcover.

10. Curb Appeal
Make sure your home’s exterior looks excellent. Trim your shrubs, remove weeds, fix peeling paint and keep the walkway clear. Just by adding some new plants to your walkway or a wreath to your front door can make a huge difference.

If you are on a budget, then review all the items above and complete as many as you can. Some of the items require cleaning up different areas of your house, while others require staging your home for a potential buyer. Certain items maybe out of your budget and that is OK. Just do as much as you can to make your home presentable to potential buyers.

Tips for an organized garage!

Garage organization tips GEO Real Estate

Tips for an organized garage!
Most families have so much stuff in their garage that they can’t even park a car in it. The yard tools might be piled on top of each other and the shelves might be stacked with lots of odds and ends and let’s not even mention the loose boxes and junk drawers. Does this sound familiar to you? If so, this article is for you.

We’ve complied some quick and easy solutions so you can organize your garage and possibly even park your car inside when you are done.

Manage the mess!
Hooks – Hang folding chairs or ladders from an oversized steel hook to get items off the floor.

Wall mount organizers – Bring order to your gardening tools and cleaning accessories, such as brooms and mops with a wall mount organizer. This will keep them up off the floor and easily accessible when you need them.

Magnetic tool holder – Instead of digging through a messy drawer, keep all your tools (drill bits, screws wrenches, nails, etc) at arms reach on a magnetic tool holder.

Bins – Stash sporting gear, shoes and other playtime items in bins so the kids can easily access them.

Labels – As you organize your garage, label everything. By labeling everything you will have a better chance of the item making it back to its proper place after it is used.

Ceiling storage – Install ceiling storage to house seasonal items, such as holiday decor, snowboards, recreational toys and luggage.

Wall storage – Purchase a utility cabinet or build a collection of cabinets for tools, hardware, paint and chemicals that should be housed in the garage.

Shelves – Add shelves to the garage for easy access to items that may need to be accessed more frequently.

Lockers – Install a set of old school lockers in the garage and assign one to each family member. This will give each person their own personal storage area in the garage.

Reserved parking
Mini parking area – Bikes, trikes and roller skates are on of the top causes of disorganization. By creating a individual parking spots for each rolling item, everyone will know what gets parked where. From the lawn mower to the bicycle to the wagon, each item has a designated space. Create a parking space for each item with the use of some masking tape.

I am selling my house, should I stage my home?

I am selling my house, should I stage my home?

Twenty years ago, sellers did not worry about “staging” their home before putting it on the market. Sellers would give the house a good scrub and hide the kitty litter box and their realtor would put a “For Sale” sign in the front yard. But all has changed, as more and more home sellers enlist the services of home stagers to make their home look amazing to potential buyers. A well-dressed, sparkling house can garner lots of attention from buyers and potentially sell your house very quickly. Their goal is to make your home be the hot commodity in the area and make buyers go crazy in their efforts to outbid each other.

What do home stagers do?
A home stager is similar to an interior decorator. They have an expertise in planning and choosing colors, fabrics and furniture, and arranging them all in a way that makes your home look its best. Their goal is to decorate a home in a way that makes it appealing to a broad range of tastes and help people fall in love with your home and want to buy it.

More specifically, here is what a stager might do to get your home ready for sale:

  • Examine your home from top to bottom and determine what should be done to get it ready to be listed for sale. They will offer recommendations and costs and develop a plan of action that works the best for you.
  • Identify specific ways to highlight your homes best features and compensate for its shortcomings. For example, a stager may recommend removing curtains from a window with a view or in a small bedroom, replacing a bigger bed with a smaller one to make the space look larger.
  • Recommend which items of your furniture and household possessions should stay in the house and which should be removed to de-clutter and de-personalize your home.
  • Help you arrange any repairs or other major work that needs to be done on your home.
  • Bring in new furniture, artwork, curtains, carpets, pillows, flowers, fruit and a welcoming doormat. The stager will bring in items that have been carefully matched and chosen to make your house feel like a place where people can live.

Should you stage it yourself?
Of course, you may already own well-chosen furniture and gorgeous home accessories and have an eye for decorating. If so, you might be able to reproduce the work of a stager and save the money. But like any of the tasks involved in selling your home, you need to ask yourself whether doing it yourself is worth your time and effort. Even if your home is in pretty good shape, you’ll still find yourself working on basic things like choosing new paint colors, hiring contractors and shopping for the perfect decoration. Your time can be sucked up very quickly, while hiring a stager means that most of it will happen like magic, while you can turn your attention to the many other things you need to do while selling your home.

The decision is entirely up to you. If you decide to hire a stager, make sure to interview several before making your choice. You want someone who can get the job done and make your home look amazing for potential buyers.

It’s time to move… Are you ready?

tips for moving

It’s time to move… Are you ready?

Between packing, changing your address, setting up new utilities and insurance, and unpacking, there is a lot to keep organized when you move. But planning and keeping a checklist can make the process go a lot smoother.

Now is the time to start researching. Start looking into moving options and whether you will hire movers or rent a truck and try to move everything yourself. Make sure to get all the estimates in writing and figure out your budget. This is also a good time to start going through your belongings and sorting them. Are there items you are not using? If so, you can try to sell them on a local Swip Swap Facebook page or list them on OfferUp or CraigsList. Or you can donate them to a local charity or church.

Now is the time to solidify your moving plans. Finalize your moving plans and start packing. You will probably need to start stocking up on boxes, tape, bubble wrap and other packing supplies.

Start packing. Start with the items you use less frequently, like china, books, or off-season items. Label each box or bag carefully, so you can identify it during and after the move.

Also, fill out your change-of-address form. You can complete this online at USPS.com or you can turn in a form at your local post office. Start setting up your utilities at your new home and scheduling them to be turned off at your old home. Notify important entities such as banks, credit card companies and employers of your new address.

Make sure to do a thorough sweep of the house after everything has been loaded to make sure you did not leave anything behind. Check closets, cupboards, the garage and the sides of the house for any missed items.

Now that everything has been moved, you get to start unpacking each box and organizing your new home. HAVE FUN!