Hints to make your home appealing to potential buyers

December 29, 2014

Before a realtor shows your home to potential buyers, you'll want to ensure it's in the best condition possible. Here are some hints to keep in mind that will boost the appeal of your home and possibly help you land the asking price you wanted.

Hints to make your home appealing to potential buyers

1. Spruce up the outside

Not surprisingly, an inviting exterior almost always ensures that potential buyers will come inside. A few easy and minor improvements could be:

  • Removing any clutter or refuse from your garage, porch or sitting areas.
  • Keeping your lawn and garden well maintained and, depending on the season, planting new seasonal flowers in urns or planters to add to the overall aesthetic.
  • Repairing any loose siding or cracked pavement (yes, potential buyers will notice it).
  • Washing windows, your front door even your mailbox.

2. Freshen up the rooms

The most often looked at rooms in a home are the bathroom and kitchen. It’s important to keep this in mind when making minor renovations before you start your showings.

  • Ensure kitchen and bathrooms are sparkling clean and keep counters clear of any small appliances (which you can store).
  • Take a new coat of paint in a neutral shade to kitchen cabinets, if they're outdated.
  • Repair leaky faucets and replace old showerheads; replace cracked light-switch plates.
  • If you have carpets in your home, steam clean them.
  • Remove or dismantle anything in the home that won’t be part of the sale (e.g., chandeliers or light fixtures).

3. Get rid of clutter

Basements, garages and closets jam-packed with several years’ worth of accumulated stuff is a big turn-off to buyers.

  • Clean out the clutter and rent storage space, if necessary.

Buyers expect access to the house and all the spaces within. This also applies to drawers, pantries and cabinets: buyers look everywhere!

4. Pre-showing checklist

It's good to have (and follow) a pre-showing checklist to ensure nothing is out of place when potential buyers visit.

  • You may love your pet pooch, but potential buyers may not be as pet-friendly. As a courtesy keep pets out of the way and preferably out of your house, during the showing.
  • It’s always best practice to leave your house while the realtor is conducting a showing to give buyers the freedom to explore.
  • Ensure every room is well aired and open any drapes to maximize natural light.
  • Put away any money, jewellery and small valuables.
  • Use finishing touches like fresh flowers and candles to enhance the ambience.

Small interior and exterior improvements can have a huge impact on your home's selling potential – and the final sales price. If you're unsure how to make the most of your home's best features, consult with an experienced realtor to determine your home's strongest selling points and how to focus on them.

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