Getting Your House Ready to Sell: 7 Tips to a Fast Sale

Amanda Vang
Amanda Vang
Published on April 5, 2021

Are you thinking about selling your home and want to know what you need to do so you can yield the highest return? Do you want to know how to sell your home fast?

After living in your home for many years, I know sometimes it’s hard to be aware of what you can do to make your house better because to you, your house is already the best! It has been perfectly adjusted by you to your needs!

Unfortunately, buyers aren’t going to feel the same way. But I’m here to help! I’m going to give you 7 tips on how to get your home sold fast and for more money. 

Tip 1: De-personalize and Declutter

When buyers walk through your house, they are trying to picture themselves living there. No one wants to live in a house that feels like someone else already lives there. Seeing someone else’s doll collection and wedding photographs detracts from the buyer’s ability to visualize the space as their own. De-personalizing allows you to make your house as neutral as possible. Buyers can have a wide variety of tastes, so it’s best to stick to basics.

White is always a neutral color, and it has the added benefit of making rooms appear larger.

Decluttering makes spaces feel bigger and less cramped. You want to declutter your home as much as possible. Rent a POD or storage and put away the big items or things you are not currently using. Yes, it costs money to rent a POD but it is well worth it because the buyer needs to be able to envision where their personal items go but if you have too much stuff in the house it can make the space feel small and the buyer would have a hard time visualizing how their own furniture will fit in the space.

Additionally, you want the space to be functional. Clear as many things as possible and make the space feel big and usable for a wide variety of activities. You may not use your spare bedroom and use it as storage, but a buyer may have kids that need that extra room to be a bedroom. You may not cook, but your buyer could be a chef and prioritize an open kitchen with lots of available counter space. If you have a big couch and it’s taking up most of your living room, move it to storage. Buyers might like to have more open areas to fit their needs.

Think of your house like a hotel. The reason hotels feel so inviting is that they provide the minimum essentials to make you feel comfortable and cozy, yet remain impersonal enough to make the space your own. Make your house somewhere that YOU’D want to stay!

Tip 2: Curb Appeal

50% of the judgement on a home is going to be made before the buyers even enter. That’s a BIG number. That makes curb appeal a very important aspect of the staging process.

In addition to painting the exterior of your home, you should power wash the porch and the driveway to make sure everything looks as clean and fresh as possible. Consider painting your door an inviting and eye-catching color if it matches well with the rest of the home exterior. Red has been the most popular color for a while because of the subtle ‘pop’ it gives.

A red door stands out from the rest of the exterior of the home.

Take care of the yard and landscaping as much as possible, removing dead plants, weeds, or any personal decorations. Put out a doormat and a healthy potted plant for a final warm touch.

Tip 3: Natural Lighting

Natural lighting is very important to buyers. Everyone likes a bright space. Dark rooms are depressing and actually make rooms feel smaller, like little caves. Unless vampires are buying your house, the buyers will appreciate lots of light. Natural light not only helps you save on electricity, but helps your space to feel more open and airy. 

If you have heavy and dark drapes, make sure to remove them and allow the natural lighting to shine inside the home as much as possible. Always check the light bulbs. If they are out, make sure to replace them. If there are areas around the house that are dark, add extra lighting.

Try to get as much natural lighting as possible. You will change the ambience and feel of the space.

Natural lighting makes the home warm & inviting.

Whenever you’re getting ready for a tour or open house, make sure to leave all the lights on so that everything is lit up well and buyers don’t have to fumble around finding light switches.

Tip 4: New Coat of Paint

By adding a new coat of paint, this will make your home feel new. You want the paint to be neutral and go with the latest trends. Nowadays you’ll find a lot of gray and beige coloring, or even a mix of both called ‘greige’. Always think from a buyer’s perspective because they are purchasing the home and they want to be able to feel like they can personalize their house. Walls are the blank canvases of the house that set the stage for everything else.

Think about entering a home with marks on the walls – it just feels more dirty, right? Unkempt? You don’t want buyers to ever feel like the house is ‘used.’ Paint can cover a multitude of blemishes, including any holes or dents you’ve had to patch up from your personal wall decor.

Tip 5: Inexpensive Home Décor

While clutter is bad, a few well-placed items can do wonders for your home. Remember how hotels have just enough items to make you feel cozy? Add in those essential details to give your space the comfortable look it needs. A few new plush towels for the bathroom. A stylish and spotless accent rug to draw the eye. Fluffy throw pillows and blankets to casually pepper couches and beds. Nice quality fake plants or flowers.

Remember, you want things that are modern and contemporary. If you’re into loud animal prints or goofy slogans on pillows, now is not the time for your personal tastes. You can easily purchase inexpensive home items at TJ Maxx or HomeGoods. They always have good stuff.

Small, non-personalized & colored accent pieces do nicely.

Tip 6: Deep Clean

This should be an obvious tip, and we’ve covered a lot of aspects about cleanliness in the other tips, but I wanted to make sure to stress it again. Clean your house! I’m talking deep cleaning all the areas that you don’t ever clean, or don’t think about cleaning on a weekly or monthly basis. We’re not talking vacuum, we’re talking professionally steam clean the carpets everywhere, even that area behind the couch that you haven’t moved in years. Wash and wax those hardwood floors and polish them until they shine. Polish that granite countertop while you’re at it, too. Maybe polish your cabinets, your stainless steel appliances. Polish everything! I want to see the house sparkle.

Make sure to do all of this deep clean prior to getting photos taken because you want the pictures to be impeccable.

Tip 7: Focus on Specific Areas

If all these tips have you feeling overwhelmed and you’re unable to get to every single detail in your house, make sure that you’re focused on the areas that count. Buyers are most interested in the kitchen, the living room, and the master bedroom and will spend the most time looking at these rooms when they tour. If you can’t make everything perfect in your house, you should at least make these rooms perfect. These rooms need to be 100% move-in ready. No one is going to want to buy a house when they have to renovate or clean up first to be able to sleep, cook, or relax. The quality of these rooms might be the determining factor on whether a buyer makes an offer or not.

Now you have 7 tips on how to stage your home on a budget. I hope this has been informative and will help you get started prepping your home for sale. Remember that the underlying theme between these tips is always keep in mind the buyer’s wants and needs!

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