Tips for the homeowner.
You've decided to move and it's time to list your house for sale. Your agent has scheduled me to come out and photograph your home so here are a few suggestions to help your home look it's best which equals a quicker sale as well as make the photo session go quickly.
Most peoples shop for their next home online and having your home photograph at its very best will filter through uninterested parties, which means you won't have to leave for a showing as often!
There are large adjustments that can be made and then there are little things.
Let's start small. It's time to pack up those little things. The first thing a potential buyers wants to do when they walk through your door is to be able to see themselves living there and by removing your personal items such as photos, monograms, and any religious emblems will help them do so. Unless you have a garage that has become a man cave, storing any items in the garage temporarily is ok as I don't photograph there or in smaller closets.
Next, clean off your counter tops in your bathrooms and the kitchen. Yes, you may use your coffee maker every day and even your hairspray, but by having as much counter space cleared will showcase the space and not deter the eye from the overall view of the room.
Remove any hanging towels and pull up any small area rugs in both the kitchen and bathrooms.
Replace your bulbs and put bulbs in open outlets. Also, make sure they are all the same temperature/color if you can. Plug in any lamps that are out and make sure they have bulbs as well or simply remove them.
Tidy up your laundry room. It's easy to store a lot of bulk items but it's a room that gets photographed as well and needs to look its best.
Your primary closet will get a snapshot so tidy the clothes, shoes and put away any valuables. Remember, these photos are going on the internet.
Mow your yard, lay out some landscape mulch, trim the bushes and lift the the lower limbs from nearby trees above the base of the roof line. We want to be able to see your house, the windows, and doors.
Remove anything from the driveway such as an unused car or trailer.
Now, onto the BIG things!
(These *may* also help bring up the value in your home!)
Paint. Bring all the main rooms and halls to a neutral color: white, gray, or beige. If all four walls of the small rooms are bold or bright colors, bring those to a neutral pallet as well or maybe leave an accent wall.
Flooring. Your thought may be that you'll leave an allowance for new flooring but if your flooring has not been taken care of or if it has, but is still stained, it tells a potential home buyer that you don't care which will translate to the rest of the house, wondering what else was not maintained.
Landscaping. Although this has been mentioned as a "little thing" above, going above and beyond by pulling up weeds, removing dead trees or bushes will help too. Plant a few annuals for a pop of color and clear away any empty pots or debris. Check your fence too. Repair or replace any posts or pickets that are missing or broken. And how about the mailbox? If it's posted at the street, make sure it's upright and stable with updated numbers or lettering. If mounted on the wall, dust it off and if it needs a new coat of paint, a can of spray paint is an inexpensive fix, along with some updated house numbers.
House Paint & Trim. Replace any rotten boards and update the paint and trim, including around the doors and windows. And for a fun pop of color, pick a complimentary color for the front door.
I know, you're probably thinking, "If I do all that, then I won't want to move!" But you will and you'll be glad that you not only put time and effort into your home to improve it for photos, but possibly a bump in it's value too.