11 Things to Do Before Listing Your Home for Sale

Did you know that over 5 million existing U.S. homes were sold in 2019?

While we don’t know how many of those homeowners used a checklist before listing their home, we do know that you should.

Listing your home for sale can feel stressful. There are several moving parts to the process, and you may not know where to start. That’s why we’re here to help.

Read on for 11 things to do before listing your home for sale.

1. Declutter
You don’t necessarily have to get rid of a lot of items in your home, but you should remove as much clutter as possible – even from the closets.

Consider getting a storage unit for nonessential items you can’t necessarily part from. If you’re already in a new home while selling yours, this is the perfect time to start taking items over to the new place.

The point of this step is to remove as much as possible from your home. Leave enough to make it feel like a home without leaving a mess. This counts for areas like closets and built-ins too. People are going to want to look inside of them.

2. Clean
After you declutter, clean everything. You could also hire a professional cleaning service if you’d like.

Your home just needs to be spotless and smelling good.

(Pro tip: Purchase long-lasting laundry beads to wash comforters, throw blankets, and even curtains so you don’t have to worry about foul smells during a home viewing).

3. Depersonalize
Take all children’s drawings, family photos, toys, and even personal knick-knacks out of the house. They make your home your home, but that’s not necessarily what you want when selling your house.

The goal is for potential homebuyers to walk in and picture themselves in the space. It can be hard to do that with items from the previous owner displayed all over the home.

4. Hire an Agent
The next step is to hire a real estate expert and they’ll be able to give you a property appraisal. That appraisal will come with guidance on whether or not there is anything in your house that needs fixing.

5. Make Improvements
Based on that list, make improvements to your home. This could be anything from a fresh coat of paint and new carpets to resodding the front yard and replacing missing fence posts.

6. Create Curb Appeal
Once you have everything fixed on the exterior, consider taking it one step further by decorating.

If you have a porch, add seating. If you have an empty flower bed, add shrubs or perennials to give your home a refresh and make it feel brand new.

7. Find Selling Points
Now that you’ve taken the advice of your real estate agent and everything is good to go, it’s time to find your selling points.

Do you have a waterfront view? Maybe you have new appliances, or you replaced the roof two years ago.

Whatever your selling points are, consider creating a list for potential homebuyers to look at when they view your home. Also, list what they may have to replace upon moving in.

8. View Other Listings
Your agent is likely to take this step for you, but it’s smart to look at the price of other homes in the surrounding area to know where the price of your home stands on the market.

Yes, all those investments you made are going to add value to your home, but how do they measure up to the area you’re in? A home in a decent neighbourhood with recent upgrades is going to sell more than that same home in a bad neighbourhood.

Take these things into consideration when deciding on your final listing price.

9. Consider Lighting
The next step is taking photos for your listing, but you should consider the lighting in your home first. How is the natural lighting?

If it’s not so great, consider upgrading the lighting in your home before listing.

If you have fluorescent lights, switch them for LEDs. If you know there’s a fixture that needs to be replaced, take the time to do that. (Having brand new LED lighting throughout your house is another selling point!)

No matter what, when you’re having the photos taken, or people are coming to view your home, make sure all the lights are turned on.

10. Create a Flow
Whether you’re only offering a 3D home tour or allowing people to walk through, your furniture should create a natural flow for potential homebuyers to follow.

Get creative with this step and hire a home staging company if you need to.

The goal is to create a natural path for viewers to follow so they’re not left feeling lost or hesitant to pick a direction to follow. Create a story with your home and draw out what each room could be used for.

If your furniture is still in the home, there’s no reason to get rid of it. If you feel like things don’t flow with your current setup, considering rearranging for the short time your home will be on the market.

11. Take Photos
It’s best to hire a photographer to take photos of your home for the listing. This is also another step your agent can help with.

Once your photos are done, it’s time to list your home and get it sold

Consider These Tips When Listing Your Home
When listing your home, remember to keep these tips in mind. Don’t be afraid to ask your real estate agent for advice if you’re feeling stuck – they’re there to help!

For more tips on selling your home, and to learn more about the fun of lakefront living, check out our blog and contact us today.