Setting the stage to sell – aim for perfect open houses and showings

Having invested in some of the effort and expense of preparing your home to sell, you’ll certainly want it to take full advantage of it when you open up your property to prospective buyers and other agents during open houses, agent tours and showings.

That’s why making sure your property looks its very best can give you that little extra competitive edge that will help get it sold. Keep in mind that many REALTORS® have, through education and experience, mastered the art of home staging. Make the most of their skills – and impartiality – to create that “buying feeling” in your home.

Time-Proven Tips For Showing Your Home

Here are a few ideas that will help you maximize your home’s attractiveness to buyers:

  • Ideally, you should be absent so buyers feel comfortable making comments.
  • Make sure your home highlight sheets are easily visible.
  • Open all drapes and shades during daylight hours to let in as much light as possible, but screen out unappealing views.
  • Light the whole house, especially dark corners and hallways.
  • Light (or turn on) the fireplace.
  • Showcase your home’s best features.
  • Turn off the television. Play quiet background music.
  • If you’ve repainted in neutral tones, add bold splashes of color (with throw pillows, crockery, pictures, etc.)
  • Place fresh flowers where they’ll stand out.
  • Open all doors between rooms to give an inviting feeling.
  • If possible, open windows beforehand to circulate fresh air.
  • Pick up toys, remove all clutter, ensure beds are made, clothes put away.
  • Floors should be clean, carpets and rugs vacuumed.
  • Trash and recycling bins should be tidy and odor-free.
  • The kitchen & bathrooms should sparkle.
  • If possible, bake cookies or put a pan of cinnamon in the oven to create a warm and inviting aroma.
  • Ideally, pets should be unseen. Pet areas should be clean and odor-free. Not everyone may share your love of animals, and some may be allergic to them.
  • Lock away and hide all cash, jewelry and small valuables.

Important: Keep Your Home Available (And Ready) For Showings

Particularly during the first weeks after you list your property, real estate agents from many firms will want to show it to their buyer clients. It is especially important during this window of opportunity, when interest will be at its highest, that you make your home available for showings, preferably at the time requested by the buyers’ agents.

Occasionally, this may pose an inconvenience for you but, you’ll certainly want to maximize the number of qualified, motivated buyers who see your home. Indeed, doing so just might make a big difference in when you sell, for how much and under what terms.

In most cases, if you’re not home at the time of the showing, your REALTOR® will meet the buyer and buyer’s agent at your home and tour the property with them. If, however, your REALTOR® has another appointment, you should consider allowing him or her to place a lockbox on your door. A lockbox is a device that enables the buyer’s agent to enter a specified code in order to open the door, in lieu of not having a key.

Along these lines, you should do your best to ensure that your home is ALWAYS ready to be shown. You never know when the right person is going to look at it!