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“a specific process and series of steps should be followed that focuses on
depersonalizing the house, organizing the space and improving the appearance."

Tips for Preparing a Springtime Home Sale

Following a winter of snow and cold weather, homeowners interested in selling tend to prepare their houses for market as the more pleasant spring season arrives. Every seller wants to close the sale at the best price as swiftly as new flowers begin to blossom, but in order to be a success, the process requires thoughtful planning and smart marketing. The primary steps, which can be completed in as little as one week, involve depersonalizing the home, organizing and improving the space.

The first step of preparing a home for sale involves letting go of the space and creating room for someone new to envision it as their own. Imagine walking into a house for sale and finding the walls and shelves covered in personal photographs of the sellers and their family. Wouldn’t that make you unable to see yourself in the space and less likely to buy the home? Well, be careful not to turn off potential buyers in the same way. Pack up and store photographs, family heirlooms and any art that betrays strong personal tastes. A few items with universal appeal add to the allure of the home for sale, but leave too much of a personal stamp, and sellers risk repelling the buyers they hope to attract. After all, chances are slim that sellers and buyers share the exact same taste in vacation souvenirs.

A key to depersonalizing a house is for sellers to disassociate from the space and let go of ownership in their minds. It is imperative to envision the house as a product for sale, not a personal home, and to remove emotional attachment to the structure and its rooms. Accept that the house will no longer be your own, and look with confidence toward the future, the day when the keys are handed to the buyer.

Once homeowners can depersonalize their space, the next step in the sale preparation is to organize the house by removing clutter, neatly arranging contents and storing unnecessary items. The presence of clutter can stop a sale in its tracks, which means that sellers need to remove daily items that accumulate like books, knickknacks and toys. Choose a few for daily use and put them in a small box to be stored in the closet, but mark the rest for recycling, donations or the trash. Consider the de-clutter process to be like packing in advance of the move date.

In addition to removing clutter, organization should involve neatly arranging the contents of closets and cabinets to make a positive impression in case a buyer opens the doors. Put excess furniture in storage to give the appearance of as large a house as possible. And remember to remove favorite items, for example, built-in appliances or a cherished light fixture, to avoid a buyer focusing their eye on them and creating a disagreement that could threaten a deal.

The final step on the way to preparing a home sale is to make improvements. Look for areas that typically need minor repairs like cracked tiles, holes in walls, leaky faucets or jammed kitchen drawers. Consider painting the walls to neutral colors guaranteed not to offend sensibilities. And lastly, clean, and clean again. Make sure windows are washed, floors are waxed, rugs are vacuumed, and furniture dusted regularly. The slightest sight of dirt or suspicion of being unclean can ruin a potential deal. Of course, apply the same scrutiny to the lawn, driveway and bushes to create curb appeal.

Every spring, legions of home sellers prepare to put their houses on the market with the hope of securing a buyer and closing the deal at the best price in as short a time as possible. To accomplish this goal, a specific process and series of steps should be followed that focuses on depersonalizing the house, organizing the space and improving the appearance. In less than one week, a house can be ready for market and on the way to a successful sale.

RE/MAX of Tenafly

                    RE/MAX Associates lead agents
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About Orly Chen

  Orly Chen is a leading
Tenafly real estate agent
in Northern New Jersey
specializing in the Bergen
County area. Her
outgoing personality,
honesty and
approachability and
integrity make Orly
one of the most sought-
after agents in the
Northern New Jersey
real estate market

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