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Home Sweet Sold Home: 15 Must-Try Tips for a Quick Sale

Updated: Apr 9

Ladies and gentlemen welcome back to another edition of your favourite local real estate blog. Today, we're diving deep into the world of selling your home. If you're considering putting your house on the market, you're in the right place. We’re talking about 15 easy ways to prep your house for a sale that'll make potential buyers swoon. Let’s get started!

1.Curb Appeal is King

Alright, let's start with something crucial – curb appeal. When those potential buyers roll up to your place, you want them to be blown away from the moment they see it. That means mowing the lawn, trimming those hedges, and maybe even slapping a fresh coat of paint on your house. First impressions are everything.

2. Declutter, Declutter, Declutter

Nobody wants to walk into a house that looks like a tornado just passed through. It's time for some good old-fashioned decluttering. Get rid of the stuff you don't need, and stash away personal items. A clean, open space lets potential buyers imagine themselves living there. We aren’t trying to offer a specific, mood, atmosphere, or style. Instead you want to offer a blank canvas that buyers can imagine their thoughts and dreams on. In this way less is usually more. However, if your home is full of clutter, or otherwise looks like a disaster zone, watch out! You're making potential buyers have to work harder to imagine your place as their dream home. If they have to work harder for it, they just might not see it.

3. Light it Up

Natural light is your best friend. Open those blinds, clean the windows, and let the sunshine in. Add some strategic lighting inside for those evening showings. A well-lit space feels warm and inviting. And remember, day or night lighting is everything. If you're holding an open house, turn on the lights, impromptu showing? Lights. Photos? You got it, lights! You really want your home to beam when people see it. When it comes to showing of your place, don't leave potential buyers in the dark, help them to see the light.

4. Fix What's Broken

It's time to tackle that honey-do list you've been avoiding. Leaky faucets, squeaky doors, and cracked tiles need to be fixed. A well-maintained home screams, "I've been loved and taken care of." When a buyer walks into a home with lots of little repair needs they wonder what bigger issues might be lurking underneath, but a well kept home puts their mind at ease.

5. Fresh Paint

A fresh coat of paint can do wonders. It is hands down the highest Return on Investment (ROI) improvement you can make to increase the resale value of your home, and it adds significant appeal. Stick with neutral colors that appeal to a broad audience. Remember, buyers want a blank canvas, not a neon mural.

6. Stage It Right

If you can swing it, consider professional staging. It's like the icing on the cake. Staged homes sell faster and often for more money. Plus, it helps buyers see the full potential of each room. Even a little light staging can help, moving existing furniture to open up the room, adding a couple blankets or throw pillows, and putting away any extra furniture or knick-knacks that might clutter up the room, table tops, or counter space.

7. Sparkling Clean

Cleanliness is next to godliness, my friends. Clean your home so it’s spotless before listing, or hire a professional cleaner to give your house a deep clean. Nobody wants to see your dust bunnies. Remember everyone has different standards of cleanliness. Even if you don't mind if you're home isn't spotless, some people will fixate on any dust, mess, or clutter. The less you leave behind that can distract potential buyers the more they can focus on falling in love with your home.

8. The Nose Knows

Don’t underestimate the power of a good-smelling home. Bake some cookies before a showing, or use air fresheners to take away any lingering odors. However, don't go overboard; you don't want it to be overpowering. Even a single glade air freshener can be too strong from those with sensitive noses. Where possible aim for natural and light smelling fresheners. My personal preference is an all natural mint spray.

9. Curb the Pets

As much as we love our furry friends, not everyone is a pet person. Ensure your home doesn't scream "cat lady" or "dog lover." Hide those pet supplies and give your place a good vacuuming, dusting and tidying. Where possible you want to vacuum and sweep away stubborn pet hair, hide their sleeping mat, put away their food bowl, and relocate their litter box.

10. Depersonalize

Take down those family photos and personal items. You want buyers to envision their own life in your home, not feel like they're intruding on yours. Although I’m sure your family photos are lovely, having your faces staring at potential buyers in every room may pull them out of imagining this place as their future home.

11. Invest in Landscaping

If you've got a yard, pay attention to it. A well-maintained outdoor space can add serious value to your home. Plant some flowers, trim the trees, and create an inviting oasis. You don’t have to go overboard, just make sure that your green space is nice and inviting, and not a mud pit.

12. Just Fix the Small Stuff

Sometimes, it's the little things that catch a buyer's eye. Replace outdated hardware, light fixtures, and faucets. It's a small investment that can make a big difference. Again, you don’t have to go crazy on this. If you have an old washer/dryer that’s still working you’re probably better off leaving it alone. That old hot water tank can be someone else’s problem if it’s still running but nearing the end of it’s life. Bottom line, you don’t want to put a lot of cash into big ticket infrastructure items since you won’t make you’re money back on these investments. Instead, you want to target the more economical stuff that will add some sparkle to your home. Think affordable and aesthetic, not expensive and mundane. Now there is one exception here. That is when it comes to bigger ticket items that might be a red flag for buyers. For example, if you have a roof leak, a crack in your siding, or a broken window, those may be easy fixes. But what happens if your roof needs to be replaced right away, or your furnace just died and you need to get a new one? Each of these projects is going to have a different ticket price and it's worth considering the pros and cons of fixing these issues versus leaving them alone. Sometimes you're better off just listing as is, other times you might make more overall by taking on the big expense yourself, and sometimes it's not really a choice, you have to address the problem before someone will even consider buying your home. (On the reverse side, when buying, make sure to look past the flashy aesthetic features, and seek out homes with good bones and good maintenance).

13. Clean Out the Closets

Buyers are nosy, and they'll be looking in your closets. Keep them tidy and organized. It gives the impression of ample storage space. If you’re closets are full to the brim, it’s difficult for buyers to imagine the storage potential.

14. Price it Right

Do your research and price your home competitively. If you overprice it, you'll scare buyers away. If you underprice it, you'll leave money on the table. In this domain, you’ll want to leverage the skills and expertise of a knowledgeable realtor to find a price range and strategy that will make the most sense for your property.

15. Choose the Right Realtor

Last but not least, find a realtor who knows their stuff. They'll help you navigate the market, set the right price, and market your home effectively. This is probably the most important step since a good realtor will give you guidance and help in coordinating all of the other steps.


Alright, my friends, that's a wrap for today. I hope you've enjoyed this deep dive into prepping your home for sale. Remember, selling a home is a big step, so take your time, research, and always consult a professional. Thanks for tuning in, and until next time, happy listing!

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I am a Victoria-based local realtor with eXp Realty. My commitment to honesty, integrity, loyalty, and hard work have been essential pillars for me because they drive a high standard of excellent service for my clients. Helping you realize your dream is my goal!

I service Vancouver Island, but my focus is on Victoria, Sooke, Saanich, Malahat, Shawnigan Lake, Cobble Hill, Duncan, and the rest of the Cowichan Valley.


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