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Preparing Your Home to Sell

The greatest secret to selling a home quickly and for the most money is the details. Who would think that re-painting the walls with neutral colors or adding a few pillows to the couch could drastically increase your chances of selling. It’s always been about details. When buyers first walk through a home, they want to imagine living there. They want to see the potential of their “new” home. They want that “jealousy” factor, so they can brag about it to their friends. These are why details are so important. But what details create that “wow” factor?

The answer is three-fold: Interior appeal, exterior appeal, and the home inspection. If you keep these 3 factors in mind when selling your home, you’ll be set to close a deal.

Exterior Appeal

The first impression any buyer has of a house comes from the outside. The front yard and the exterior walls set the stage for what buyers expect – and it’s probably one of the most important factors to selling your home. So let’s take a look at an example (see below image):


Lexington Home

 What do you see?

Your eyes probably fall straight to the bushes. They look nice and have dimension, but in reality, they are subtracting from the house’s value. Those little mediocre bushes are blocking precious sunlight from entering the house. Beautiful windows are obscured, and when you’re inside the home, you’ll be put off by how dark it is. Then the bushes steal your attention from the timeless oak tree sitting in the back. Trees like that portray a sense of power and wealth that is subconsciously observed by buyers – if only they could see it.

The solution is simple. Take out the bushes, plant some lower cut shrubs and lay rich mulch for added depth. After that, attention will be more focused on the stunning architecture of the property and timeless features around it. And let’s not forget about that precious sunlight that warms the house up.

Other Easy Fixes for Exterior Appeal:

  • Regularly cut and water the lawn
  • Keep trees and shrubs trimmed
  • Clean and align the gutters
  • Leave the garage door closed
  • Repaint doors and windows, as needed
  • Add flower pots or other hanging annuals near your front entrance

Interior Appeal

From entering your house, it will take 8 seconds for a buyer to make a judgment about the property. It’s impossible to get the house perfect, but let’s talk about what every buyer hates. Clutter. Too many things hanging around shelves or tables shows buyers the house is small and there’s not enough room for everything. Mentally, they won’t feel like they can move in – since your stuff is in the way. Can you see yourself moving into the house below?


Room clutter

Bathroom Clutter


Even though you remodeled the bathroom with brand new sinks and a sleek shower, buyers will never notice it because your personal things are in the way. Simple advice is to de-clutter everything. Go ahead and put some of it in boxes – you’ll be moving soon anyways, right?

Other Easy Fixes for Interior Appeal:

  • Get the carpets professionally cleaned
  • Keep counters clear of clutter
  • Fix leaky faucets and showerheads
  • Spruce up the kitchen with a fresh coat of paint on the cabinets
  • Repaint walls with neutral colors

Home Inspection

The last factor that can drastically change your chances of selling is a pre-home inspection. Paying an inspector to check out your house before you list can go a long way – especially if he finds any major problems. The last thing you want is to get an offer, have the mandatory home inspector come by, and reveal a major issue. If anything does come up, it could potentially change a buyer’s mind and you lose a deal. Or the buyer will ask you to drop the listing price by a lot, since they will have to fix it. And that’s the last thing any seller wants. Everyone wants to sell for top dollar, so why not get a pre-home inspection? A couple hundred dollars could save you thousands.


If you keep these 3 factors in mind when selling, you’ll be sure to attract offers. For more information on how to sell your house, don’t hesitate to send us your questions or concerns in the form below:

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Nick Ratliff

Former electrical engineer & MBA Graduate turned Realtor in 2004

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