How to Prepare Your House for Sale on Short Notice

YNM Real Estate
18 December 2021

Where do you start when you need to sell your home quickly, and you have to prepare your home for viewing within a day or two?

A professional real estate agent can help you to fast track the process by advising you on presentation and decluttering, and pointing out which areas of the home need focus. They can also put you in touch with skilled tradespeople, designers and stylists if you are pressed for time and need to outsource some of the work.

First – you need to plan. Make a list of the work to be done, and prioritise the tasks. Identify which, if any, are to be outsourced, and contract with the service providers as soon as possible. Then move on the work that you need to handle yourself. Take each task, focus and complete before moving on to the next. Make sure that your list is realistic for the time that you have available – and prioritise those items which will have the biggest impact, to the top of your list.

Although painting can be an instant refresher for your home – try to avoid this if you have only a day or two, unless you are going to use low-odour paint. Otherwise, the smell of the new paint will make the paint job obvious and it may appear as if you are trying to hide imperfections.

Remove any clutter in your home (family photos, memorabilia, books and DVDs, animal bedding, toys etc) – this will allow prospective buyers to more easily get a feel for the size of the rooms and will make the rooms feel larger, more airy and appear to have more light. Outside the home check for and tidy away garden hoses, rubbish bins, bicycles and washing. Make sure that the garden is neat and tidy.

Clean your property thoroughly – both inside as well as outside. Ensure that there are no pet smells in the home – this can deter would-be buyers unnecessarily.

Ensure that your garden is tidy and well-trimmed with weed-free, well turned beds. Planting a few seasonal bedding plants can make all the difference to the kerb appeal of your home. If you have a courtyard or patio – a few well-placed potplants which are green, healthy and well watered will enhance the appeal of this area of your home.

Attend to basic maintenance – go round your home and identify all of those basic maintenance jobs that need to be done. Leaking toilets, taps, grubby walls needing a coat of paint, loose handles on doors or cupboards and so on. Attend to worn/marked carpets and refresh any dirty grout in tiled areas.

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