7 Key Things to Do Before You List Your Home


For Sale Sign Under Home Showing Selling PropertyThe decision to list your home is a very exciting time…and a very busy time. All you have to do is put a ‘for sale’ sign on the front lawn, right? Not quite. If you want a quick sale and a good price, there are a few tasks you need to take on to make your property someone else’s dream home.


Even during the coldest times of the year, landscaping around your house does wonders for the look of the house—and the impression made on potential buyers. Mowed lawn, weeded flower beds, pruned trees—everything you do makes a positive impression on potential buyers. Use this landscaping checklist to make sure your home looks well-kept and cared for, from the moment they drive up until the end of the showing.

Find out the value of your home

Deciding on the listing price of your home is not as simple as asking for the amount you owe on your property, or the amount you think it is worth. The worth of your home is determined by the selling prices of local homes that have recently sold. Because it’s important to compare apples to apples and oranges to oranges, your home value is set by other homes with comparable lot sizes and square footage.  To get this number before you put your home on the market, contact a real estate agent to set an appointment so you can get a full review of your property and honest evaluation of a fair sales price for your home.

Seal and repair the driveway and sidewalks

One of the first impressions your potential buyers make about your home happen when they pull in the driveway. If the driveway is cracked or disintegrating, your buyers are going to start making a mental list of costs they need to pay for once they are in the house. Often, the result is a lower offer (if they even make an offer on the property) that accounts for all the repairs they need to make to the driveway or sidewalks.

Pressure wash your home

A clean property is a home that looks its best; a thorough pressure wash of the siding or bricks can help your home look it’s best. After you pressure wash, cleaning the windows completes the look of a well-manicured, cared-for home.

Clear the clutter

Empty rooms can make it hard for a potential buyer to envision the purpose of every room. The opposite, a very full room, can have the reverse effect. Rooms full of furniture, pictures, and knick knacks can make it hard for potential buyers to imagine the home with their belongings in it. It can also make rooms look smaller. To make your room look its best, only leave necessary items and furniture in each room. Remove pictures from the walls and add a fresh coat of paint to make your home look ready for the next buyer.

Deep clean

Disgusting tub. Dirty kitchen sink. Stained carpet. A floor so dirty they can’t tell the quality. Don’t give your potential buyers a reason to want to leave your house (or make a lower offer to accommodate replacement costs). If you have pets, “de-pet” your house; deep clean the house to remove any pet dander or odors (even if you can’t smell them, others may be able to). Remember the old saying about  kitchens and bathrooms selling the home. Make sure that every surface and fixture in these areas is deep cleaned (a good local real estate agent can give you the name of a good cleaning service).

Fix any issues

If you want to avoid any surprises during home inspection, you can hire a home inspector to do a pre-listing inspection. The results, a list of issues with your home, can give you the opportunity to get those problems repaired at a price you choose (and by a vendor you choose). In addition to the list you get from the home inspector, make sure you replace light bulbs, make sure all your switches work, and check all your plumbing fixtures so your home is ready for the next buyer.

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