Upon listing your home, buyers will want to take a tour. As buyers are
thorough when it comes to inspecting a potential home, you will want
to keep everything in order at all times. While it may be inconvenient
to be especially tidy during this time, you will reap the rewards
by presenting your home in the best possible light. When your home is
clean, organized and in show condition, it will stand apart from the many
others a potential buyer has seen.
The first step to making your home ready for showtime is a lock box.
This device makes showing your home very convenient. Other Real Estate Professionals can
show your home, without having to locate the key each time, or making
an appointment. Your Real Estate Professional will place your house key inside this box and attach it
to a convenient area on your home. Only Real Estate Professionals, bonded and approved by the local
real estate board have an assigned code to access this box. Codes are
changed each month. The box also records the codes of the Real Estate Professionals who
have recently visited your home.
Your home should always be available for viewing. Most agents will call
you and give you a few hours notice prior to showing your home. Be cooperative
and unless absolutely unavoidable, do not cancel the showing. Buyers
like to see a home as quickly as possible. This, however, works to your
advantage. When a buyer sees a home quickly and likes it, you will
get an offer sooner, rather than later.
Buyers like to have complete access to your home. Some, however, may feel
reluctant to view your home as thoroughly as they would like if the seller
is home. When you give buyers the opportunity to fully explore your home,
you are sending a positive message – you have nothing to hide. When
your home is being shown, take yourself out for coffee, go shopping, or take
the kids to a park. If you have to be at home, be sure to remain in one room
and out of the way. While it is appropriate to greet buyers at the door, do
not volunteer any information. Simply say, “nice to see you,”
and let your Real Estate Professional handle it from there.
Prior to the buyers arrival, turn on all the indoor and outdoor lights
– even during the day. At night, a well-lit homes creates a lived-in,
warm impression when viewed from the street. In full light, during the
day, full lighting diminishes the harsh shadows created from sunlight.
In full view, your home looks inviting, welcome and ready for a new buyer.
Avoid using scented sprays. They tend to be very obvious and in most cases,
too overpowering. A buyer may get the wrong idea. Many people also have allergies.
For a pleasant aroma you can choose to have a potpourri pot simmering. Even
better, keep the pot simmering throughout the entire time your home is listed.
It’s a simple matter to keep a potpourri pot filled with water and fragrance,
rather than scrambling each time a buyer visits. You might forget this important
element to a successful sale. Another idea is to prepare some baking (either
yourself or from a bakery) such as cinnamon rolls, or other bread product.
Put these unbaked pieces in the freezer. Before you head out for coffee set
your oven on a low temperature (275 – 300 C) and let the baking warm
your home. When you get home, after an hour or so, you will have fresh baking
waiting for you.
Be sure to advise your Real Estate Professional of any pets you own. If possible, try and
have a neighbour or family member board your pet while you are showing
your home. Pets may become confused and disoriented in the presence of
visitors. When you are out of the house during the showing, perhaps you
can take your pet with you.
If your pet has to remain at home during the showing, try to keep it
contained in the backyard (for dogs), or perhaps a specific room for indoor
cats. Be sure to post a sign on the door, in consideration of your visitors,
and the cat. Frequently, noise and unfamiliar people frighten cats. They
usually hide until things are back to normal. Some however, may panic
and try to escape.
Remove all garbage
Be mindful of the kitchen and bathroom areas, the places where buyers
tend to scrutinize the most. Be sure these areas are clean and disinfected
prior to showing. All garbage should be removed, even if the garbage is
kept under the sink. Buyers look everywhere. Kitchen garbage bags are
an inexpensive item when you are considering the impression you
want to make on a potential buyer.
Keep your home tidy and organized
While it will take more effort than normal keep your home clean and organized
throughout the listing period. It is definatly worth it to get up a few minutes
earlier to make the bed and wash the dishes. Pick up papers. Organized the
mail. Throw out magazines or stack them neatly on the shelf. Dust and vacuum
as frequently as you can. You want your home to look its best anytime a potential
buyer visits and that could be at only an hour’s notice.