What does a Garden Gnome do when she is not gardening, in the kitchen or doing genealogy? Well the answer might just surprise you so read the entries to find out more. This blog focuses on everything we do to make our house a home. There will be a strong emphasis on home energy efficiency and do-it-yourself (DIY) projects. At the same time there will also be crafts, knitting and crocheting projects along with any other little tips we do to create that down to earth, I want to be here home. Please enjoy your visit :)

Thursday, March 25, 2010

A Few Tips for Selling Your Home

Sometimes it seems like we have sold more homes that I really want to think about but we learned a bit from each one. The important thing to remember from the time you put your house on the market whether privately or with a realtor it is a disruptive experience. The biggest problem is while you are living life in your home it has to be in show condition with very little notice. Here are a few tips I've used to minimize the disruption:

  • declutter - The more you declutter the more you don't have to later more and the easier it is to keep your rooms tidy in show condition. Be a bit brutal here with anything out the door if at all possible. First on the list should be donating and giving away even if you have to freecycle with the last resort being throwing out.
  • do a major cleaning - Selling a house is very different from having company over. You want everything squeaky clean, sparkling, neat, tidy, dust free and in short able to pass the white glove test in even the spots no one would ever look.
  • omit all smelly cleansers, air fresheners and scented candles - No house should smell like it has just been cleaned when being shown. If someone can walk in your house and immediately smell a cleanser then it can easily turn them off but worse yet could trigger an allergic reaction or an asthma attack.
  • do a 15 minute daily shine - Your house is neat and tidy ready for showing so do a 15 minute shiner every morning. Walk through the house with a spray bottle of alcohol and wash cloth. Shine up every shiny surface. Wipe down sinks, tidy towels, and take the garbage out.
  • the 5 minute rule - Spend 5 minutes each day in at least one room in your house. Remove/declutter what you can or straighten or shine or whatever you can do in that room within the 5 minutes.
  • everytime you leave a room - Pick up one thing that doesn't belong there or that can be eliminated and remove it. This takes only a few seconds but can make a huge difference.
  • tread lightly - Stage any room that you can. These are rooms you can get away with simply not using. Have them set for showing then leave them alone until after the sale of the house, dusting if necessary but nothing more.
  • cook lightly - Cooking can become a huge issue when selling a house because you don't want the mess or the odour. Rely on your freezer for homemade freezer meals and the outdoor grill to keep odours out. Cooker easier to prepare from scratch meals to keep your routine. Immediately after doing any cooking place a bowl of white vinegar out to neutralize any cooking odours. Don't rely on take-out that can be expensive and give tell tale signs to potential buyers.
  • make your house appealing - Aside of being squeaky clean which is a must put a couple of vases of fresh flowers out. Soft music can be appealing as can a fresh baked loaf of bread or cookies cooling on a rack in the kitchen. Do not bake anything that has peanuts in it such as peanut butter cookies. Light a few candles but only if 100% beeswax or soy wax candles with no scent. Beeswax cleans the air and neither beeswax or soy wax candles will trigger allergic reactions or asthma in potential buyers..
  • pets and signs of pets have to go - Sorry but this is a must! Some such as myself viewing a home are highly allergic to pet dander. This can trigger both allergic reactions as well as asthma. In addition to this the lovely smells from the kitty litter box is not quite the smell most potential buyers want to smell. If at all possible board your pets out or have a friend take them while your house is in the selling stage.

Garden Gnome