My wife and I put our house up for sale in March 2018. Within a week, we had two offers. The first one fell through and the second one came two days after the first offer fell through. Our goal was not to pay on two homes. We built a house in 2017 and by early 2018, it was ready to move in.

What did we do to sell our house fast? Below are a list of steps that we took to make our home sell quickly.

Declutter, declutter, declutter – We spent weeks decluttering our home. We didn’t realize how much stuff we had collected in the 10 years. We went from room to room and packed up items in cabinets, closets, dressers, night stands. We depersonalized our home of family photos. We were very fortunate that we had another home to move our stuff. If you don’t have that luxury, you can rent a storage unit or this may be a good time to have a garage sale. You don’t want to show buyers how much stuff you can get into a space. You want to show buyers how much space they’ll have for their stuff.

Rearrange the furniture. Our living room had exercise equipment in it. We moved it to the new house. You don’t want people bumping into your furniture as they are walking around. Does your buyer see an open, yet intimate space that inspires conversation?

Clean, clean, clean – clean everything. Vacuum, make the beds, and wipe down the counters daily because you may have an unplanned viewing. Dust – dust the ceiling fans, clean the blinds. Dishes shouldn’t be in the sink. Bathroom sinks, toilets and showers should be cleaned. We kept our home nice and tidy. We cleaned the windows inside and out bringing more light into the house.

Set the table – Set a couple of place settings at the dining room table. Or place a centerpiece on top of a neutral table runner. Put neutral music such as classical or jazz on low in the back ground. Although we didn’t bake cookies or burn scented candles to make our home appear warm and welcoming, we did use a pleasing scented air freshener through our home. If the buyer can see that a family lives there, they can imagine their family living there.

Repair or replace broken items. We did have a little cash to spend and I spent it on mulching the front yard and painting window sills and freshening up worn out and chipped areas. Why? It’s important to give prospective buyers the notion that the property was taken care of well and they won’t have to spend a huge sum on repair work or fixing broken, malfunctioning items because that may be a big deterrent to getting good offers from potential buyers. Also buyers give you about six seconds to make the sale—three seconds from the curb and three seconds from the foyer.

Of course, every home is different. Before you spend a dime freshening your home up, ask a real estate agent you trust for advice. A true pro knows what buyers in your area want and can help you maximize your home’s appeal without busting your budget.

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