When selling your home, think about the big picture - meaning what is the overall first impression that your buyer will have when they approach the house and when they walk into the house. A typical home viewing doesn't last more than a half hour, so think big, broad picture.
1.If there is something unsightly on your property that will stick out like a sore thumb, address that item. That could be something as simple as an unsecured paver that they will step on when approaching your house or perhaps a water stain on the drywall when they walk in, or perhaps it's an overgrown hedge.Make sure that at least the first 5 minutes of their tour are smooth sailing.
2.Neutralize, neutralize, and neutralize. As a designer, I love color, but when it comes to selling homes, less color is the way to go. You want to cast as wide of a net as possible with your potential buyers and that means not dissuading buyers that may have an aversion to say, the Cabernet red you decided to paint your dining room. Believe it or not, some buyers can't get past some of these very superficial details and you can lose out to the other seller who chose to paint their dining room in a very neutral tone.
3.Speaking of paint, if your home has great architectural molding, now is the time to show it off. Do some light sanding and get a coat of semi gloss bright white paint on all of that trimwork and I promise you will hear the buyer say "Check out these moldings!"
4.Update old fashioned light fixtures. Very simple and need not be expensive. Online shops like eBay and Amazon along with LampsPlus.com offer tons of affordable attractive items.
5.Next, think about the things that your potential buyer will come into physical contact with, like door knobs and light switches as they move from room to room. Loose, worn and dated door knobs raise red flags. You can get lock sets for as little as $15 bucks in some home improvement stores and they will automatically update your home. The same goes for light switches - make sure they all look the same and especially change out any outdated wooden or metal switch plates that scream "old"
6.As for floors...if your home's floors are in good condition, show them off! That means declutter and remove some furnishings if needed to show off more of the surface. Conversely, if they are in poor condition, or have areas that have worn badly over the years and you don't want to invest in repairing them, cover them up. That means adding a staircase runner to cover up stair treads and risers that have taken a beating. It also means getting a handful of neutral sisal-like runners and scatter rugs to conceal areas that have been marred or stained over the years as well.
7.Lastly, this should go without saying, but after touring several homes for sale over the years, I can tell you that this one must be repeated. Clean the house. That simple. When your home is on the market, it's going to be super important for your home to look and smell clean. Your agent might have a potential buyer for you at a moment's notice and your home has to be ready to sell when that person arrives. Dust often and wipe down surfaces and invest in eco-friendly odor neutralizing sprays. And, if you're hosting an Open House, bake some cookies because nothing says "welcome home" like the smell of freshly baked cookies.