Selling - Getting The Most Out Of Your Home

First Impressions

Home buying is an emotional experience and first impressions make the most impact, so you don’t have a second chance.

Judge a book by its cover

Buyers will judge before they even enter and judge based upon what they see outside. If it’s not appealing they will not want to take that first look inside.

It’s always a good idea to spruce up the exterior and interior of your home before listing it for sale. But that doesn’t mean you have to undertake major expensive project.

And it’s always what is needed for the maximum return. After all, if you wanted to undertake a large-scale project, you probably wouldn’t be selling!

Here are some simple steps you can take to increase the perceived value of your home and make a great first impression. Not all on the list will apply to you, but you can get my professional opinion about YOUR home.

Remember I will work with you to improve the overall visual impact and effectiveness of your home and will offer my professional opinion, to ensure that you receive the highest possible price for your home.

Find out how much you home is worth Today - Click Here.

Create A Buying Mood

  • Reduce Clutter - Click Here, for Tips on Dealing with Clutter.
  • Create an open, airy, light - plenty of space feeling
  • Make sure your home smells fresh and clean
  • Turn on lights
  • Turn on air conditioner/heater
  • Open the drapes
  • Light the fireplace if appropriate

Buying a home is an emotional experience, and by experiencing as many of the senses as possible, it will leave a positive impression overall and will guarantee a higher rate of success.

  • Sight – present a bright, light, roomy, open home
  • Smell – Fresh baked cookies – bread – cider - Candles
  • Taste – Use those baked cookies & cider
  • Feel – All surfaces should be smooth and clean
  • Hear – Play background music that is pleasant

In the Spring/Summer:

  • Flower & Tree beds cut in
  • Sidewalk grass edges cut in
  • Keep lawn freshly cut
  • Trim hedges & shrubs
  • Weed beds and gardens
  • Fresh mulch adds curb appeal
  • Sweep front steps, porch, and walkways

In the Fall/Winter:

  • Rake leaves
  • Shovel snow & ice from walkways & drive
  • Kitty litter on icy roadways
  • Keep mat for shoes/boots


  • Check for cracked or peeling paint on front door--repaint or replace if necessary.
  • Polish door handles.
  • Check for cracked or peeling paint on exterior siding.
  • Power wash aluminum/vinyl siding.
  • Repair cracks in driveway and seal.
  • Clean driveway stains
  • Clean sidewalks stains
  • Clean gutters and repair gutters and leaders if loose or broken.
  • Repair ripped screens on doors and windows.
  • Clean front porch
  • Keep front porch unobstructed
  • Fresh doormat
  • Repair loose railings--paint or wash if needed.
  • Repair or replace lighting fixtures if broken--replace bulbs if needed.
  • Clean windows.
  • Keep walkways unobstructed.
  • Clean out garage


  • In general Create Space
  • Clear halls and stairs of clutter
  • Store surplus furniture
  • Clear kitchen counter and stovetop
  • Clear closets of unnecessary clothing and “stuff”
  • Remove empty boxes and containers
  • Put away personal photos so buyers can envision the house as theirs


The kitchen is the heart of the house. Buyers often make a beeline for the kitchen to determine how clean it is kept. Many buyers feel if the kitchen isn’t clean, it’s an indication that the rest of the home hasn’t been well looked after!

  • All appliances should be kept clean even if all aren’t included in the sale.
  • Replace stove burner catch trays- they can be dirty and hard to clean
  • All countertops and work surfaces should be spotless and free of clutter.
  • Kitchen sink should be clear of dirty dishes.
  • Cabinets should be clean inside and out and not overcrowded.
  • Polish or clean hardware on cabinets
  • Flooring: if old and worn-out, consider replacing--particularly if carpeted.
  • Take out trash/recyclables


  • Buyers also love clean, fresh smelling, sparkling bathrooms!
  • Clean shower stall/tub thoroughly--recaulk if needed and replace shower curtain liner.
  • Wash or replace shower curtain.
  • Display clean fresh towels.
  • Empty wastebaskets.
  • Wash area rugs.
  • Polish mirrors and all faucets and taps.
  • Keep floors clean.
  • Clean out the vanity--get rid of products you no longer need or use to give the illusion of more space.
  • Keep countertops free of personal care items.
  • Organize linen closets.


  • Keep vacuumed.
  • If stained, have professionally cleaned.
  • If very worn out, have replaced.
  • If hardwood flooring is underneath, consider having refinished if in bad condition. The trend is polished hardwood floors.


  • Buyers need to see that their things will fit into your closets.  A bulging closet gives an impression of inadequate storage space!
  • Store or pack clothes for the next season. You won’t be wearing them now and you can get a head start on packing.
  • Consider space saving shelves if not already installed--can actually double closet space.
  • Pick up/organize shoes from the closet floor.
  • Neatly fold/hang clothes.


  • Repair or replace leaky or dripping faucets and toilets.
  • If faucets are corroded, consider replacement.


  • Replace burned-out bulbs in lamps and light fixtures.
  • Repair or replace dirty or broken switchplates.
  • Heating & Cooling:
  • Replace filters and vacuum ducts.
  • Clean and remove excess plants from around exterior of units.


You can have a sparkling clean home inside and out; however, if buyers detect an unpleasant odor due to pets, cigarette smoke, or unusual cooking smells, it is a big deterrent and can prevent a sale!

  • Keep litter boxes clean and out of sight.
  • Burn candles or simmer potpourri.
  • Clean carpets, draperies, and upholstered furniture.