Move In & Enjoy

Is it time for you to make a move? If you've been considering it, you're in good company. Now might be the right time to get the home you've longed for. That also means getting your present home ready to sell. Where do you start?

You may have seen the words, 'move in and enjoy' with respect to home advertising. A huge selling feature will be your home's "move-in-ability" - or how much work potential buyers think they will or won't have to put into cleanup and repairs before moving in. The less work they anticipate, the more appealing your home will be to them. Here are some items to consider when putting your home up for sale.

Cleanliness says you care. The overall appearance of your home speaks volumes about how well you have (or have not) cared for your home. A property that is clean, tidy and well maintained lets potential buyers know you haven't neglected upkeep and maintenance. If you're a busy person and don't have the time, hire someone to clean your home from top to bottom. Make sure every surface sparkles. Windows should be cleaned inside and out, walls washed, baseboards wiped down and the kitchen and bathrooms scrubbed.

Organization directs focus to the space, not the stuff. Potential buyers will naturally imagine their things in your space - in the same condition in which they see your things. If your closet, storage areas and garage are messy and disorganized, that's how they'll picture their own things. The same is true if your spaces look organized and well cared for. Organize each area and discard items you won't be taking with you. Do an inspection to see if a quick coat of paint is needed. Storage is one of the most important items on everyone's wish list, and if yours is in order and spacious, you are more likely to make a good impression.

Well-maintained means less work for buyers. Small inconveniences can turn a potential buyer away. Check for loose door knobs and drawer pulls, light switches that don't work or look dirty, commode handles that need to be jiggled, dripping faucets and the like. These items don't take a lot of time or money to clean or fix, but they make a big impression on potential buyers. And every effort at this level will bring a nice return on sale day.

Buyers often want to avoid the hassle of moving appliances. If you plan to include the appliances with the sale (a good idea), make sure they are clean and in top working order - no stoves with missing burners or non-working air conditioners hanging out of the window. Give everything a good scrub-down to remove grime and odors. Even less appealing to buyers than moving appliances is the thought of cleaning someone else's not-so-gently used appliances before they can use them.
Don't underestimate curb appeal. If it looks tired or neglected on the outside, you'll have a harder time selling the inside. Check your porch and decorative lights to be sure they're working and don't need bulbs replaced. Yard areas should be maintained and tidy, and dead or dying plants should be removed. Trim up your shrubs and sweep all walk ways for easy access to the home. Make the entrance to your front door a welcoming one with a nice, clean front door and welcome mat.

Keep it up. Once you have everything cleaned and in order be sure to keep it that way. Even when you have a working contract, continue the maintenance. Why? Because your buyers have the right to expect what they saw on their visits. When the moving van is pulling away, take a look around. You should see a property that is ready for new owners to 'move in and enjoy.'

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Shari Noctor


phone: 610-266-5241


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