Updated: Aug 12, 2019
Selling your home is a major life decision. Maybe you took a new job and need to relocate, maybe your family is growing and you need more space, or maybe you've recently become an empty-nester and are looking to downsize. No matter the reason, parting ways with a place where you've grown roots and have made your own can be challenging. The following guidelines will help to prep your psyche and your space before you hit the market.
Shift your mindset. I've had sellers express the desire to make their home feel "lived in" by displaying items that speak to their personalities and the memories that they have made over the years. While challenging, it's important to view this process as one of selling a prospective buyer their new home rather than selling them your home. Remove anything that is too personal - family photos, children's artwork, vacation souvenirs, etc. You will want to create a blank canvas for prospective buyers to imagine their own new memories and experiences in an inspiring space.
Clean out your closet. And your basement. And literally every other room in your house. Prospective buyers are going to look through every square foot of your home to see whether it suits their needs and will be deterred by cramped and cluttered spaces. Pre-packing is a great way to reduce work once you're getting ready to move later on and can also create the appearance of more space in your home. If you have a family member or friend who lives nearby and is willing to store some of your boxes for a little while then that's awesome! Yard sales and online marketplaces (Poshmark, Letgo, etc.) are also great ways to clear out space and clean up your home.
Assemble your team. It's important to work with trusted advisors when closing one chapter of your life and opening another. As a Realtor®, my role is to act as a sounding board for my clients and make the entire selling process as seamless as possible while providing continuous support and maintaining expectations. I cannot stress enough the importance of teaming with professionals who actively work in the industry full-time and dedicate themselves to real estate. This perspective also extends to working with the right real estate attorney. From experience, these professionals know the ins and outs of what needs to be done in order to advise and protect the best interest of their clients during a transaction. If you don't have your own resource list that's okay! Part of your Realtor's® job is to help you connect with the right people to build out your A-team.
Getting yourself to a place where you are ready to sell your home takes time and often is not achieved over night (although, I'll never say never). This process is far from the romanticized experience projected by HGTV where a cute and tidy couple says, "We're ready to sell!" one day and slaps a 'Sold' sticker on the 'For Sale' sign in their yard the next. Ensuring that you are mentally prepared and that your home is physically prepared to go to market can help aid in making the experience of selling a positive one.
Realtor®, License #9556847
Waterfield Sotheby's International Realty
48 Mount Vernon Street, Suite One
Winchester, MA 01890