Successful Showings: 5 Tips for Sellers

Open House & Showing RulesShowings are a critical step in the home-selling process. Most home buyers can make a decision on a home within just a few moments of entering a new property. Does it feel right to them? Does it seem like home? As a seller, what can you do to make your home as inviting as possible to a wide range of buyers?

Vacate the Premises, and Your Little Dog, Too

Despite any wicked interest sellers might have in the people who could buy their home, sticking around to meet them is a critical mistake when showing a home. Sellers aren't interviewing someone for the role of future homeowner. Potential homebuyers are interested in the property, not the personalities of the current owners. Sellers should plan to vacate the premises well ahead of the scheduled showing, and take all family pets along as well. The prospective homeowners may be allergic to that delightful Shih Tzu pup or terrified of the properly caged boa constrictor in the living room. Take them all to a friend's house or for a car ride during scheduled showings.

Deep Clean Everything

When a prospective homeowner walks a property (whether they're searching for listings in Bayfield or a vacation home across the globe), they are trying it on for size. Does it fit them? Does it look flattering? When they look in the corners, through the windows, or at the ceiling fans are they greeted by clean, shining surfaces or do they find the dirt that you didn't have time to get to? If sellers don't have time to deep clean every inch of the home, invest in a one-time professional deep cleaning so that the home puts its best foot forward.

Eliminate the Source of Funky Smells

If the home has an unpleasant odor to it, prospective homeowners will immediately be turned off. Try to locate and neutralize the source of any unusual odors. It's easy for a homeowner to become accustomed to unusual smells from smoking or pets, so ask a friend or real estate agent for their honest opinion. Relocating the litter box to the garage, cleaning the carpets to eliminate the smell of dog, or airing out the garage to eliminate a musty smell can be very helpful. Be careful about using products such as air fresheners to cover up the smell for showings as homebuyers may be allergic to the perfumes or suspicious about what you are hiding.

Light Up the Night

Buyers want to see the home. Homes that seem dark are less inviting than those that are brightly lit and airy. One way to combat darkness is to make sure all the light bulbs in the home are replaced with new CFL or LED lights. Replace dark curtains with lighter colored counterparts to maximize natural light. When you leave prior to a showing, make sure to leave lights blazing. Don't make real estate agents or buyers struggle with light switches in the dark.

Put Personal Effects Away

Buyers are typically looking very closely at the home. While they don't want to meet you personally, they will look at the personal things you leave laying around. Make sure to put personal items out of sight as much as possible. Keep in mind that buyers are likely to open closet doors, kitchen drawers, or cabinet doors to check out the home's storage. Be certain to place personal information in a secure location. It may also be wise to place additional furniture and belongings offsite at a storage facility

Additionally, a real estate agent is a valuable resource when it comes to readying your home for a successful showing. As an industry veteran, a real estate agent knows what can instantly turn a buyer off and what encourages them to come closer for a closer look.

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