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Buying & Selling Tips

Selling Advice

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Here are lots of ideas to prepare your home for sale:

Prepare Your Home For Sale 3 Week Plan

While packing, take an inventory to help make sure that nothing gets lost in the move. This not only helps you keep track of everything, it’ll also serve as an inventory to save for Homeowners Insurance.

You could download a home inventory app to photograph and label your belongings. Or you can always handwriting your inventory list. Whichever option you pick, take a quick snapshot of each full box before you close it.

Clear labeling is another way to ensure everything makes it to the new house. Note which room the box belongs in and a general idea of the contents (such as “Kitchen – Pots & Pans” or “Bathroom – Towels”). Write the label on the top, the sides and on the master inventory list. “Label EVERYTHING!”

Remember to photograph your donation pile as it grows, too. Each item you give away can be itemized as a deduction to help offset any real estate taxes.

Typically, cleaning out the garage, basement and storage are massive tasks! If you get them out of the way first, you eliminate the dread of having to clean them out.

Packing up these areas first also allows you to make good headway without getting in the way of your day-to-day. Your storage areas are sure to be filled with items you seldom use or forgotten items that you won’t want or need. This helps you get into the purging mindset.

Clearing out storage areas early means that you’ll have places to stack the boxes you’re packing to take to the new house. This strategy will assist you in not having to scramble to hide your boxes during showings.

Tackling the living room towards the end of days 1-3  is a smart idea.  You’ll have a comfortable, decluttered place inside to work as you move on to the more cramped and cluttered areas. Unlike your kitchen, bath and bedrooms, the smaller, packable clutter in the living room are less likely to be necessities.

The bedrooms and bonus rooms come next because they see less traffic than the areas like the kitchen and bathrooms. If you can still access the bed or desk, the rooms can serve their purpose in the mess of moving. They’ll likely take more time to pack than you thought.

Most people stuff all of your loose-ends into your bedrooms and offices  where they’re out of sight, out of mind. This habit is why you’ll need more boxes than you might think.

BEFORE packing, grab a container and put in all of the necessities to help you get by until you’re in your new home—remember clothes, shoes, toiletries, and other everyday items.

A good guideline to follow is to touch every item only once. When it leaves your hand it should either be packed or discarded. Here’s a simple solution to help you during the decisions process:

  • Ask yourself: “Do I love it? Do I currently use it? Does it have sentimental value? If lost, would I miss it or replace it?”
  • If the answer to any of these questions is “yes,” then keep it. If not, out it goes.

Homeowners who have trouble with purging may want to consider hiring someone to help them with the packing. 

Although packing to move is your goal during this project, DON’T FORGET  you’ll soon stage your home, keeping out a few decorative items to keep the packed-up rooms from looking too sparse.

Start again by gathering up all of your everyday-use items so you don’t pack them away. Also, cleaning supplies and equipment should be set aside to get the house show-ready.

In the kitchen, assemble a basic cooking kit that includes items like a medium-sized pot, a frying pan, a cutting board, a few sharp knives and other utensils.

In the bathroom—aside from your own toiletries—keep a small stash of items like toothpaste and toilet paper.

Everything (plus food) needs to go through the “toss or keep” process. 

The majority of your pantry can be packed.

Once the home is packed up, it’s time to send the donations off.  Make sure you’re covered when tax season rolls around by photographing your donations and remember to get a dated receipt.

No matter the season, spruce up the home’s exterior to make it more attractive to buyers.

During the cooler seasons of fall and winter, clear the yard of debris and give trees or bushes pruning as needed. Enhance curb appeal with a pop of eye-catching color by adding a colorful wreath or winter plants to your front porch. Sweep your driveway and walkways prior to every showing.

The landscaping project gets bigger and longer in the spring and summer. Weeding, mowing the lawn, and trimming the greenery are just the beginning.

You’ll need to edge your walkways, spread mulch, plant new flowers and greenery in barren spots—and take care of any other landscaping issues that might turn buyers off. 

Check over your home’s exterior for any noticeable damage or deterioration to your siding, windows, gutters and roof. Fix these issues before listing or you’ll run into problems during the home inspection.

If all of the landscaping and exterior repairs have you overwhelmed, consider handing some of it over to an expert. 

Once you move tables, chairs, couches and the rest of your stuff away from the walls, you’re guaranteed to find holes, chips, scuffs and stains.

Move your furniture and any boxes to the center of the room. Cover them to protect them from paint splatter.

Wipe down all of the walls with a cleaner ( grease removing)—especially the kitchen and bath. Paint won’t adhere well to dirty walls, and some stains are even tough enough to seep through fresh paint.

Spread more tarps around to protect the floors, then cover outlets, window and door frames, and baseboards. Fill or patch holes or gouges.


Think like a salesperson rather than a homeowner by selecting neutral tones to appeal to most buyers. Note: One coat of paint may not be enough.

If your original wall color is dark or bright, these colors will show through a single coat of neutral paint. Cover your walls with a coat of primer first.

If both your interior and exterior are in need of fresh paint, you may just be able to strike a deal to hire one crew to do the whole job.

With everything out of the way, it’s time to give your place a top-to-bottom deep cleaning.

A deep clean will solicit buyer comments like the house feels solid, well-maintained, or meticulously cared for, even when the house is outdated!

Every bit of dirt from cobwebs to dust bunnies and grimy stove needs to go. Why? Buyers poke around in the most unexpected places, and if they find dirt, they’ll think you don’t take care of the place.

Take on one task at a time and get it done throughout the house before moving on to the next task.

Once you’ve done a thorough deep cleaning, it’s easier to tidy up the house on short notice.

Now that you have some of your belongings packed away, and others purged to free up space, it’s time to put what’s left back together in a way that’s most appealing to buyers. First, tuck away any remaining boxes that you’re moving to the new place out of sight in closets or other storage areas.

You should  tuck away all of the clothing, toiletries and other personal items you’ll need during your last few weeks in the house.  Clothing and toiletries can go back into closets, dressers and medicine cabinets.

However, you’ll need to find a new home for any everyday use items normally kept out in the open, like hair brushes or hand lotion. These personal products will cause potential buyers to start thinking about you as the homeowner rather than focusing on your home. You can keep these items out of sight, yet easily accessible, with a few decorative boxes.

While it is acceptable to simply tidy up as you would for company, make an extra effort to ensure their soon-to-be-former home stands out to buyers. Stop acting like a homeowner and start thinking like an advertiser so you can package your home like the product it is.

Try different arrangements that create an inviting picture for buyers. Set a pair of armchairs by the fireplace instead of having all of your seating aimed at the television.

The same advice goes for your knickknacks and other decorative items. Imagine complementing your tall end-table lamp with a medium-height vase and a decorative bowl filled with wrapped mints attached by a ribbon to your real estate agent’s card.

Selling your current house and moving into a new home is a stressful undertaking. However, you’ll have a good chance for a low-stress transition if you approach the process with a plan.


Call Us! Again … Seriously … Call Us! … Best Advice we Can Give! Having someone who knows how to help you secure a home in today’s market is KEY. It’s brutal out there!

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