Selling a home is rarely as simple as staking a “for sale” sign in the front yard and waiting for buyers to come knocking. To increase your odds of a quick sale, a high price and a smooth process, you’ll often need to invest in preparing your home for the market. With the basic steps below, you can help your home show its best and dazzle potential buyers.

Keep It Clean

Presenting a clean and tidy home is one of the simplest things you can do to boost your property’s appeal. A cleaner home often appears newer, better maintained and more valuable to potential buyers. Before your agent arrives to photograph the place and buyers start walking through the door, roll up your sleeves and clean your home from top to bottom.

Declutter and Depersonalize

Personalized finishes, family photos and the clutter of life all make your home feel like yours. However, when you want a buyer to envision themselves as the new owner, your goal is to reduce or eliminate these unique influences. Stow away personal items, declutter as much as possible and consider replacing bold design choices with neutral options to help create a blank slate for potential buyers.

Fix it Up

You may not notice the scuffed paint in the hallway or the leaky seals on your windows, but the buyers touring your home probably will. To them, even minor issues can look like big hassles or potential signs of neglect that reduce your home’s perceived value. Make a list of all the potential repairs your home requires, and consult with your real estate agent to decide which are worth fixing up.

Stage the Scene

While it’s important to declutter and depersonalize your home, the savvy inclusion and arrangement of furniture, linens and other furnishings can help make your place appear much more inviting. Try to ensure all of your spaces are staged for a specific purpose, such as arranging a spare room as a guest bedroom or office, and consider tasteful additions such as fresh flowers, throw pillows and plush linens.

Increase Curb Appeal

First impressions matter. Although prospective buyers are most interested in your home’s interior, the first look they will get is from the curb. Consider applying a fresh coat of paint, replacing old hardware and fixtures and upgrading your landscaping to boost your curb appeal. At a minimum, be sure your yard and garden are kept in tip top shape.


Preparing your home to sell can require time and money, but results can often pay off several times over. An experienced real estate agent can advise you on which home sale preparations are worth the investment, and which ones you can forgo.

If you’re considering renovating a home before a sale or if you’re looking for a trusted seller’s agent, get in touch today for a free home renovation financing consultation or a referral to a trusted local real estate professional.