Everyone works hard to get the house ready to have a party and they work hard to get the house looking its very best. What guest is more important than your potential future buyer?
It is very hard to look at your home through the eyes of others – one unique method is to have a “staging” party. Why not invite a group of the friends that you know will be honest to have drinks and nibbles and experience your home at its very best. Ask them to fill out anonymous postcards telling you the top positives and negatives that they notice immediately upon entering.
Here is a list of the top ten negative things that most people notice – do any of them apply to your home?
1. Your bathroom is not sparkling clean. And we mean SPARKLING including fresh grout in between the tiles and around the tub. Demerits for a tub and show that is full of your personal products. When having a party and definitely when staging a house please hide all of your toiletries from view. Believe it or not even the quality of your towels is noticed.
2. Your towels are old and thin. Nothing says “I have it all together” better than freshly laundered thick puffy towels. Go and buy a new set of towels for each of your bathrooms and only hang them for parties and showings. Really – it makes a subliminal difference that you do not notice but your guests/buyers will.
3. Your house smells. You may think having your house smell like cinnamon is a wonderful thing so you burn candles during parties and showings. Your buyer or guest may hate the smell of cinnamon. You may think you can’t even smell Mindy the Newfoundland. One person’s fragrance is another person’s stink. Your guests will tell you.
4. Poor Lighting. Lighting can kill the mood or make a perfectly nice home feel dark and dank. Bad lighting may be not enough lights but it could also be the 1970s florescent tube lighting in your kitchen. Or having mismatched bulbs in your bathroom fixture. If you need all of the lights to be turned on prior to a party than you certainly need them on prior to showings. If you can’t be home then tell your agent to provide that service for you. Lighting can make or break the experience of your home.
5. Clutter. You know this. We don’t have to tell you. Box it, donate it or trash it. If you can’t do it yourself hire a professional!
6. Pet Hair. You love Mindy the Newfie, however, as you go about your normal routine you can overlook things that even other pet owners would notice. For example, have you ever glanced into a corner of the room to see a collection of pet hair you didn’t notice building up? If you have carpeted rooms, the attachment for your vacuum cleaner can quickly clean hair from where the carpet meets the baseboards. Fur on the furniture? A pair of dry rubber dish gloves helps you sweep fur into an easily removable pile.
7. Dirty Glass. Yup – there’s slobber on the sliders. There’s smoke residue on the other windows. If you can’t wash every window in your house before the party then hire a professional. It ain’t cheap but it’s SO worth the money.