So you’ve decided that it’s time to sell! Now what?

Take stock of what needs to be fixed.

Look at your home with an objective eye.  You may have grown used to looking at the outdated wallpaper in the guest bathroom, but buyers will see it as a project and an added expense to change.  A coat of paint and a few fixes can add value and appeal to any home. Consider hiring a handyman to fix some of the things you’ve been meaning to get to.  You can find someone via Home Advisor, Local Handyman Pros, or the Home Depot, or ask your realtor whom they might recommend.

Decide what fixtures and appliances stay or go.

Leaving your washer and dryer? Taking the chandelier your grandmother gave you? Make sure you consider this when speaking with your agent.  You want to make sure that all of these things are clear before the home is officially listed.

Time to Clean House.

Now for the hard part… getting rid of unwanted clutter and what you won’t be bringing when you go. Start with your storage areas. Sell or donate anything that is taking up space in the attic, basement, or garage. Closets are next – ideally, each closet should appear 2/3 full and no more to look spacious and inviting. Consider donating items to Good Will, the Salvation Army or Habitat for Humanity restore.  Both Salvation Army and Habitat for Humanity will pick up larger items.

Have a plan to stay clean and organized for showings.

It’s hard to stay show-ready clean when you still live in your home every day!  Consider having a drop area for shoes, bags, and backpacks if you don’t already.  Use a laundry basket by the front door that can be whisked into a closet or laundry room in the event of a showing. Pack up extra knick-knacks and family photos to make it easier to dust and to allow others to imagine the home with their own family in it.  Vacuum regularly if you can, or hire someone to clean while your home is on the market.  Also, when it’s showing time – open all shades, pull back the curtains, and turn on the lights!

As always, Pinterest has some great guides to getting organized and ready!