Obviously, your home should look its best when potential buyers arrive. However, time is not always on your side. There may be times when you have only a few minutes to get things ready. What you do with those minutes can mean the difference between an interested buyer… and one who crosses your home off their list.
Here are some things you can do to help your home look its best in just five minutes or less:
- Put away coats, hats, and shoes. Clean up, especially around the foyer. You don’t want clutter to be the first thing a buyer sees.
- Turn on all lights and lamps. A home that’s bright looks larger.
- Put on some soft music. Easy listening is the best choice. Don’t play rock or jazz music because some people might dislike it. Think elevator music.
- Make sure the toilet lids are down. Even when a washroom is sparkling clean, a raised toilet seat gives the impression – however incorrectly – that things are less than hygienic.
- Relocate the pets. Put pets in the backyard or basement, or at least segregate them in a separate room. Better still, take them away from your home entirely.
- Close the garage doors. Most garages don’t look great on the inside.
- Hide the waste bins. Keep them out of sight.
- Wash the dishes. If possible, don’t leave them on a drying rack. Put them away.
- Put away personal items. Put family pictures, bills, and other personally identifying information away. You want the buyers to visualize themselves living in your home, not you.
- Open all curtains and blinds. This makes rooms look bigger and brighter, even at night.
House hunting can be a grind. If you’re not careful, it can easily take both an emotional and physical toll on you.
At the beginning, you and your family will be fueled by excitement, desire and enthusiasm – the raw ingredients of adrenaline. That’s what keeps you going.
After a while, however, a long day of viewing homes with fidgety kids and an empty stomach can leave you exhausted. When that happens, even the most ideal home can seem undesirable.
Since you don’t want exhaustion to result in a missed opportunity, it’s important to pace yourself. Here are some tips for doing just that.
- When it comes to endurance, everyone has their limits. If a child or spouse is looking tired, take a break. Just because one person is able to see a lot of homes in quick succession doesn’t mean everyone else in the family will have the same stamina.
- Never house shop on an empty stomach. Make sure everyone has a good breakfast, lunch, or dinner before heading out.
- If you have young children, find out where the local parks and playgrounds are located. These are great places to take a break and let the kids play for a while.
- Keep some bottled water and perhaps some light snacks in the car. You never know when someone’s stomach will begin to grumble.
- During an all-day excursion, avoid the temptation to eat a large lunch at a restaurant. It may make you feel sluggish and tired in the afternoon.
If you’ve been househunting for several weeks, all the homes may start to look alike. If this happens, take a few days off. It will help to restore your perspective.