When you’re a seller preparing your home for the market, there are a lot of important steps you need to take before showing it to property hunters. This is just as true when you’re offering virtual tours of your home to potential buyers who live too far away to visit in person or who are unable to visit for health reasons. Our guide offers all of the information you need to get your home ready for the real estate market, no matter if shoppers will be dropping by in person or online.
Create Curb Appeal
Starting on the outside of your home is a great way to start the home-prep process for selling your space. In addition to sprucing up the exterior of your home, be sure to tidy up your landscaping and clear out junk from your yard so it pops in person and in virtual tours. These specialists can help you get your outdoor areas ready for the market:
- A landscape designer will transform your front and back yards into works of art.
- If your lawn and garden need some TLC, a lawn care and gardening pro can bring it back to life.
- Tree service specialists, shrub trimmers, and stump removal and grinding services ensure only healthy, well-maintained plants surround your home.
- Sprinkler repair services will ensure your watering system is in working order and will keep your lawn lush while it’s listed (and beyond).
- Landscape lighting specialists will make your outdoor areas shine in more ways than one.
- Fence contractors will repair broken fences or install structures around your home to appeal to buyers with kids or pets, or who simply want a more private yard.
- Hire a professional siding contractor to repair or replace damaged vinyl, wood, stone, or fiber siding.
- Power wash your driveway, sidewalk, and home’s exterior to add curb appeal even in your listing’s photos and videos.
- Deck repair contractors will mend worn or broken outdoor gathering spaces to create more appeal for social shoppers who love hosting get-togethers.
Deep Clean Every Room
Discerning buyers want to see clean, cared-for spaces whether they visit in person or online. If you need an extra set of hands, reach out to one or more of these specialists:
- House cleaning services will make your home sparkle. Even if you don’t plan to hire a housekeeper to come by regularly, bringing in a professional for a one-time deep cleaning will get your home ready to list quickly, and you’ll only have to worry about touch-ups and maintenance going forward.
- Wall and ceiling cleaners take tidiness to new heights by reaching every inch of your home’s surfaces without damaging paint, wall paper, or other wall and ceiling finishes.
- Allow loads of natural light to pour into each room of your home (which looks especially beautiful during virtual tours) by hiring professional window cleaners.
- Clean carpets are critical, especially if you have kids or pets who don’t tread lightly. Hire someone to deep clean your carpets and area rugs or rent a steam cleaner from your local hardware store so they’ll look fresh in photos and in real life.
- Kitchens are a huge selling point for homes. In addition to working with a maid, consider hiring a kitchen exhaust and hood cleaning service. These specialists will make your oven range’s hood look brand new and ensure it’s working properly.
- Keep your home smelling fresh and its systems running smoothly by hiring a duct and vent cleaning contractor.
- If you use your fireplace regularly, you should have your chimney cleaned and inspected annually, so be sure to hire a chimney repair pro if you’re behind schedule. Once that’s taken care of, a chimney cleaning service will make the heart of your home a draw for buyers.
- If bugs, rodents, or other nuisances are a concern, bring in a pest control company to remove and prevent unwanted residents.
- Mold is a major issue that can stop a home sale in its tracks. Mold inspectors will alert you to any problems in or outside of your home, and mold removal services will take care of the problem before any visitors enter in person or online.
Even in photos, a messy space will make your home unattractive to potential buyers, and clutter is especially distracting in a virtual tour. These pros can help you get organized:
- Professional home organizers will help you maximize your space and can even make your home look larger. These specialists are especially helpful if you’ll continue to live in your home while it’s on the market.
- To really make your home pop, consider working with an interior decorator in unfinished spaces, like your basement or walk-in attic. You can keep this project budget-friendly by focusing on cosmetic and minor structural repairs rather than adding furniture and decor.
- Once your home is tidy, hire a home stager to add the finishing touches that will make your home stand out in the real estate market. Whether prospective buyers are entering your home in person or via video, home stagers will create an inviting space that will help shoppers envision how great living in your home will be for their family.
Make Necessary Repairs
You may be used to that leaky kitchen faucet or peeling paint in the master bedroom, but homes that need repairs are turn-offs to shoppers. Take care of home repairs — especially anything that can lead to a bad inspection — to lure in offers from live and virtual tours by hiring a handyman or one (or more) of these pros:
- Professional painters will give your home a makeover, even if you don’t have a lot of money to spend on home repairs.
- Hire a drywall repair contractor to take care of any trouble spots in your walls or ceiling.
- Replace or repair interior and exterior doors that are damaged or that don’t shut or seal properly.
- Windows are often called the eyes of the home, so make sure yours are in good shape by calling a window repair service to fix or replace your windows. Also be sure to repair your door and window screens if they have any tears.
- Appliances you’re willing to part with in your home sale should be in tip-top shape, so contact an appliance repair service if yours are having issues.
- Damaged tile doesn’t just look bad in photos and videos, it can cause tripping hazards for in-home visitors. Hire a pro to repair or replace damaged tiles throughout your home. The same rules apply when it comes to fixing hardwood floors.
- Call a plumber to take care of any issues, no matter how small. Even little leaks can make shoppers question if there are bigger problems they can’t see on a home tour.
- Use a kitchen and bath resurfacing company to re-coat and spruce up chipped or peeling sinks and tubs.
- Repair or replace damaged toilets with the help of a pro.
- Garages are highly desirable for most buyers, so repair your garage door, if needed.
Consider Home Renovations that Offer a High Return on Investment (ROI)
If your home is outdated or needs major repairs, investing in one or more major renovations could pay off in the form of a huge ROI. To make your home stand out online and in real life, consider hiring contractors to upgrade these areas of your home:
- A cracked foundation is a huge problem when you’re putting your home on the market. It’s an expensive fix, but hiring a foundation repair contractor can prevent a home inspection from going south and keep your sale from falling through.
- Although a costly undertaking, installing a new roof can increase your home’s value. If yours is in bad shape or is over 20 years old, you may be able to sell your home more quickly and for a higher price by hiring a roofing contractor to install or repair a roof.
- Because up-to-date kitchens are one of the most desirable features in a home, working with a countertop contractor to install highly sought-after marble, granite, or soapstone surfaces can command a higher asking price.
- Homes with outdated or inadequate electrical systems aren’t attractive to shoppers. Electrical wiring and panel service providers will modernize your home’s power and boost its appeal.
- Don’t forget to address issues in your home’s other major systems. Look for local heating and furnace repair contractors, air conditioning repair services, and water heater repair services as needed.
- If your home is really outdated and you have the budget, a major remodel, especially in your kitchen, master bedroom, or bathrooms, can be a worthwhile investment. A remodeling contractor can help you modernize your home and make it more attractive to buyers.
Professional contractors are a homeowner’s best friend when preparing a home for the real estate market. Whether you’ll be inviting visitors into your home in person or through virtual tours, calling on the right home improvement pros will help you sell your home for the best price in the quickest amount of time.