If you plan to sell your home this year you have some preparation work to do before your agent puts the “Home For Sale” sign in your front yard. If you haven’t chosen a listing agent yet, now is a good time. The sooner you get one, the more access you will have to your listing agent and his experienced advice.
I’ll give you a good tip here. An experienced listing agent would tell you that one of your main priorities should be to make a good impression on potential buyers. Living in Minnetonka already gives you an advantage because Twin Cities buyers view Minnetonka favorably.
Because location isn’t everything, when the time comes to sell your home, its condition and appearance are closely tied to how a buyer will assess your home and how quickly it may sell. Based on this, we want to make your home look it’s best and the first step to achieving this is cleaning it.
A clean home tells a buyer it has been a loved and well cared for home. Additionally, if your home isn’t clean, it may leave the buyer with the impression that other things, like basic maintenance, have also been ignored. Not good. Since cleaning is the least expensive and easiest way to immediately improve the appearance of your home, we would be remiss to not do it.
Before You Put Your Home for Sale, Clean It
Please note that at this point I am going to assume you have already gone through the decluttering and depersonalization of your home. If you have not done this, here is a good article to guide you through the process that precedes the cleaning.
And when I say clean, I’m not talking a weekly type of project but a deep and thoroughly clean that would pass the fussiest Minnetonka white glove test. This is the type of project you might take on once or twice a year, or maybe not. It’s a process that includes the whole house from basement to the attic and everything in between, inside and outside.
Here are some general guidelines that apply to every area or room
• Clean wash down the ceilings, walls, woodwork, and doors
• Clean the hardwood or laminate flooring
• Vacuum and shampoo the carpets
• Wash the windows both inside and out.
• Clean the shades or blinds. Wash the curtains or have them dry cleaned.
• Clean all light fixtures or ceiling fans. If they have glass shades run them through the dishwasher.
• Clean all light switch and receptacle plates
Kitchen Cleaning Guidelines
• Clean the cabinets thoroughly inside and out
• Clean all appliances, inside and out
• Wipe down the counters and take everything off except the coffee maker
• Clean the tile backsplash
• If you have a ceramic tile floor, clean the grout and seal it
• Clean and polish the sinks
• Clean and polish the faucets
Bathroom Cleaning Guidelines
• Remove all soap scum and stains from the tub, shower doors, sink and toilet
• Scrub all the grout and ceramic tile
• Clean the vanity inside and out
• Polish the faucet and make sure there are no hard water marks
• Don’t forget to clean the exhaust fan
Outside and Garage Cleaning Guidelines
• Clean the Gutters
• Power Wash the Outside
• Polish all lighting fixtures and other front door hardware
• Tidy the porch if you have one
• Wash and seal the garage floor
• Remove any grease stains and seal the driveway
Miscellaneous Guidelines – Home for Sale Prep
• Clean and service the Furnace and Air Conditioner
• Replace filters on the furnace and air conditioner
• Clean your washer and dryer because they get dirty too
• If you have a fireplace, have the chimney cleaned
• Make sure there are no surprises in the attic because buyers will look there
• For an unfinished basement, make sure the floors are clean and there are no cobwebs hanging from the rafters because buyers do not like “icky”, dark and dirty cellars
• Funky odors – must go or your buyers will
Seems like that about covers it. Finally, when you follow the guidelines, the result should be a home that is clean enough to impress the fussiest of Minnetonka home buyers. Almost time to tell your listing agent to get his home for sale sign ready.