Here are ten simple things to do that will make a big difference in how a buyer perceives your Marietta home for sale, and whether they decide to keep driving or stop and see it.
1) Light bulbs – Make sure all of them work! Next, replace energy savers with clear glass regular bulbs. You want clean, bright light. If you have fluorescent lights, make sure they are all working and turn on at the same time. Bright light creates space. Shadows and darkness close down space.
2) Screens off – Remove all window screens from the front and visible sides of your house. In my opinion, screens are the equivalent of putting braces on your teeth. You may have a great smile but you’re going to be distracted by the braces. Needless to say, clean your windows once you’ve removed the screens.
3) Trim bushes – Landscaping should be neat and trimmed. Nothing should cover any of the front windows of your home. Replace briquettes or pine straw as needed and watch the weeds.
4) Power wash drive and walk way – It’s amazing how much dirt accumulates on these areas. A good power wash will make your entrance more appealing.
5) Plant flowers at mailbox and entry – Add some color to maximize curb appeal. As I approach a house for a showing, I always notice whether it has a bright and colorful appeal or if it is the typical green grass and red brick. Add some color (yellow, white and red almost always work) especially at the mailbox which is typically at the front of the driveway. Use planters at the front door to brighten up this area.
6) Clean screen/paint front door – If you have a screen or storm door, make sure the glass is clean and/or the screen is not torn or ripped. For your front door, a fresh coat of paint plus a new knocker and/or kick plate will draw people into the house.
7) Wash entry lights – While most showings are done during daylight hours, one thing I always notice is if the front entry lights are clean and straight. Since most sellers enter and leave through their garage, they forget about these lights. Replace them if needed but many times all they need is a wash and new bulbs.
8) Paint stair rail or porch – Again, with most sellers using their garage as their exit/entry portal, they often forget to look at the house from a guest’s perspective. If your rails are rusted or just worn from the sun, put a fresh coat of paint of them. If you have a porch, the same goes here. Make sure the paint is in good condition.
9) Cut and edge the lawn – This one seems like a given but you need to keep your lawn mowed (weekly in season) and edging will make it look sharp. Also, don’t forget to edge the beds and islands if you have them.
10) Replace or remove worn welcome mat – Again, remember how buyers are approaching the house. If everything else looks good but you have a worn out welcome mat, it can negate all the work. Either replace the mat or remove it and put one inside.
These simple tips will show you care about the house and want to make a good first impression. Buyers will be more likely to feel that you have also taken care of the rest of the house if they are impressed as they walk up..