The Seller’s Essential Open House Checklist

Photo via Home Adore
Photo via Home Adore

Open houses … they’re like the ultimate dating game; will buyers say ‘I do’ to your home?

As a seller, the first impression your home makes is so important to enticing prospective buyers. We have put together the essential open house checklist for home sellers to help you put your home’s  best foot forward. Print this list and check off each step before you open your home to the public.

#1: Capitalize on Cleanliness

Get out the dustpan or hire professional cleaners to give it a thorough deep cleaning. From the floors to the ceiling fans, make sure your home is in top-notch condition so potential buyers can focus on the features and benefits of your home rather than its flaws.

#2: Banish Odors

Odors can come from a variety of sources. If you own pets, it is quite possible that you no longer notice the pet smell in your house, but house hunters will. If you’ve just painted the living room, air out your home. If you smoke, do it outside. Leftovers in the fridge? Toss ‘em. You get us – even temporary smells can make a bad impression.

To combat odors and create a welcoming home, open windows, light scented candles, and use carpet fresheners. Don’t overdo it on the day of the showing, strong smells – even fresh ones – can be off-putting to buyers with the most sensitive noses.

#3: Kill the Clutter

As much as you love surrounding yourself with memories, your family portraits and collectibles are unnecessary clutter when it comes time to sell your home. Put things away before open houses to ensure you’re presenting a blank slate to potential buyers. That includes a long list of items so make sure to check these off:

  • Remove Pictures
  • Move Old Furniture Out
  • Put Away Toys
  • Stow Away Jewelry and Other Expensive Items
  • Take Non-Essentials Out of Closets
  • Empty Drawers of Clutter
  • Clear Off Table Tops
  • Remove appliances from countertops

#4: Let In the Light

Natural light makes your home more inviting. It makes it seem larger, more cheerful, and lightens up the disposition of those in it.  Open up curtains and reposition furniture from in front of picture windows. The goal is to show off the best features of your house, and today’s buyers love natural light.

#5: Be Prepared

Marketing your home is key to its sale. When you partner with the most experienced agent in your neighborhood, it’s a given that they will be prepared for the open house with marketing pieces such as pamphlets and business cards.

Likewise, you should prepare light refreshments and even snacks so your agent can keep potential buyers lingering in your home as long as possible.

#6: Leave the Premises

This may sound harsh, but when it’s time for your open house: leave! You want potential buyers to feel comfortable asking questions and browsing your home. If you’re there, it can be difficult for them to open up and feel comfortable. Trust that your agent is the best marketer of your home.

Author Bio: Agent Ace is a free service empowering homebuyers and sellers with the tools to identify real estate agents in their area with the most expertise.