|Showing the House
Your house should always be available for
show, even though it may occasionally be inconvenient for you.
Let your listing agent put a lock box in a convenient place to
make it easy for other agents to show your home to homebuyers.
Otherwise, agents will have to schedule appointments, which is
an inconvenience. Most will just skip your home to show the
house of someone else who is more cooperative.
Most agents will call and give you at least a couple of hours
notice before showing your property. If you refuse to let them
show it at that time, they will just skip your house. Even if
they come back another time, it will probably be with different
buyers and you may have just lost a chance to sell your home.
Try Not to be Home
Homebuyers will feel like intruders if you are home when they
visit, and they might not be as receptive toward viewing your
home. Visit the local coffee house, yogurt shop, or take the
kids to the local park. If you absolutely cannot leave, try to
remain in an out of they way area of the house and do not move
from room to room. Do not volunteer any information, but answer
any questions the agent may ask.
When you know someone is coming by to tour your home, turn on
all the indoor and outdoor lights – even during the day. At
night, a lit house gives a "homey" impression when viewed from
the street. During the daytime, turning on the lights prevents
harsh shadows from sunlight and it brightens up any dim areas.
Your house looks more homey and cheerful with the lights on.
Do not use scented sprays to prepare for visitors. It is too
obvious and many people find the smells of those sprays
offensive, not to mention that some may be allergic. If you want
to have a pleasant aroma in your house, have a potpourri pot or
something natural. Or turn on a stove burner (or the oven) for a
moment and put a drop of vanilla extract on it. It will smell
like you have been cooking.
If you have pets, make sure your listing agent puts a notice
with your listing in the multiple listing service. The last
thing you want is to have your pet running out the front door
and getting lost. If you know someone is coming, it would be
best to try to take the pets with you while the homebuyers tour
your home. If you cannot do that, It is best to keep dogs in a
penned area in the back yard. Try to keep indoor cats in a
specific room when you expect visitors, and put a sign on the
door. Most of the time, an indoor cat will hide when buyers come
to view your property, but they may panic and try to escape.
The Kitchen Trash
Especially if your kitchen trash can does not have a lid, make
sure you empty it every time someone comes to look at your home
– even if your trash can is kept under the kitchen sink.
Remember that you want to send a positive image about every
aspect of your home. Kitchen trash does not send a positive
message. You may go through more plastic bags than usual, but it
will be worth it.
Keep the House Tidy
Not everyone makes his or her bed every day, but when selling a
home it is recommended that you develop the habit. Pick up
papers, do not leave empty glasses in the family room, keep
everything freshly dusted and vacuumed. Try your best to have it
look like a model home – a home with furniture but nobody really