A properly staged home sells faster and for more money. Staging is so effective that it is considered one of the most valuable sales tools available.
First, check for possible safety issues that visitors may encounter such as loose flooring materials, missing handrails, different levels in flooring at transitions that could cause someone to fall. If you have tile, ensure grouting is intact and clean.
Adjust and lubricate all doors and hinges including cabinet doors, screen doors, gates, etc. Any doors that will not close may indicate a problem with the door frame due to settling or other structural issues.
Inspect all the windows to make sure they are in proper working order. Moisture trapped between double pane windows indicate that the vacuum seal is broken. These can be repaired for less than the cost of new windows.
The simplest way to declutter is to begin packing and storing your belongings in preparation for moving. Pack books, knick-knacks, and personal items in moving boxes and store them in an off-site facility if you don’t have storage space on the property. Remove unnecessary furniture to make rooms appear larger. Empty closets and use closet organizers to make sure they spacious, organized and uncluttered. Put valuables like jewellery, money, etc. in a safe place where it won’t tempt strangers.
Kitchens and baths require a quick inspection for water damage and possible repairs. Look at caulking around fixtures and make sure everything is in good repair. Mould, mildew and rot indicate chronic moisture problems.
Clean the appliances so they are new looking, including filters and lighting. Wash the entire kitchen with a mild bleach solution to sanitize, remove stains and freshen. Replace dated faucets. Remove all magnets and art from the fridge, top and sides. Put away all items usually stored on the counter. Declutter the cabinets and under sink areas by packing non-essential cookware and dishes.
Basement areas will be the focus of a home inspection and it’s a good idea to make the entire area easily accessible. Begin by packing non-essential items and then inspect for common maintenance issues. Look for rotting wood, crumbling masonery, efflorescence (a white powdery coating on concrete), also obvious signs of water damage like cracks and water seepage. Make sure the basement humidity is at normal levels and correct appropriately if necessary.
Selling your home is a good opportunity to have a garage sale. When you’re done, your garage should be free of clutter with a floor free of oil stains.