Guest Blogger #471, Entry #1097, April 16, 2012
Showing off your home for the first time to complete strangers can be quite intimidating. You don’t want them to find something unexpected or unwanted, and you may not know what items in your home are good or not good to show to potential buyers. A buyer general knows within 30 seconds of stepping into your house if they are legitimately interested in buying your house, so first impressions are everything! Don’t guess at what you should and should not do, take a tip or two from us for home staging.
Image via: Ffffound
The true first impression of your home is what is on the outside. Untidy hoses, toys laying around the lawn and other messy things can be organized and put away before a visit. Harder things will include dirt patches in your lawn, weeds on patios and cracks, and un-watered or unmaintained gardens. These will take time to fix, so plan ahead and take care of outside improvements well in advance of your first home showing.
For many homes, the kitchen is the first thing a potential buyer will see once they entering the home. Like the outside of your house, you should make sure everything is nice and tidy. You will be surprised at the places of your kitchen potential home buyers will inspect. Behind your refrigerator for water damage, inside your oven, and inside your cupboard drawers are the most common places. If there is damage to your walls, make sure it is taken care of by a professional if necessary. This could include food stains, wall paper cracks and other dings and dents.
Be sure that all closets are closed, beds are made and everything is nice and tidy. Bored kids will sometimes jump all over beds to “test them out”. Although you can’t really stop that from happening, you can periodically go through and fix any beds that were jumped on. This may seem like a no-brainer but take care of dirty laundry. No one wants to see your dirty clothes, and something as simple as that can completely turn off a home buyer.
Image via: Decor Pad
Other Best Practices
One word: sunshine. You want to make your home as natural and inviting to those from a foreign environment. People associate sunshine with happiness, and they feel there is nothing to hide with a room covered in sunlight. Open all your shades and drapes, and if the weather is nice, leave the window open. For rooms without windows, leave the lights on and make it as lit up as possible. Some home buyers like to leave the TV on for a home showing. Generally it is not a good idea, unless there’s a big football game on or a big event. It’s considered more of a distraction, and you want potential buyers to be in a “buying” mood. You may have the nicest dog in the world, but if a home buyer has bad dog allergies, they will head for the hills. Put all cats, dogs and other pets in a closed off room. If you have the option, give Fluffy to a relative or friend for the day.
This article was contributed by Coldwell Banker Valley Brokers, offering Albany Oregon real estate.
For more home staging ideas on Stagetecture, click here.