Getting Your Home Ready for the Market
Making your house look as nice as possible may seem an obvious part of selling your home. Apparently, it's not, because many sellers don't do much beyond vacuuming the living room rug and maybe cleaning the ring off the bathtub, says George Devine, in "For Sale by Owner," Nolo Press, Berkeley, Calif.; 1993. Short of spending a lot of money, Devine offers several steps people can take to make their home show better:
* Sweep the sidewalk, mow the lawn, prune the bushes, weed the garden and clean debris from the yard.
* Clean the windows and make sure the paint is not chipped or flaking.
* Be sure that the doorbell works.
* Clean and make attractive all rooms, furnishings, floors, walls and ceilings. It's especially important that the bathroom and kitchen are spotless.
* Organize closets.
* Make sure the basic appliances and fixtures work. Get rid of leaky faucets and frayed cords.
* Ensure that the house smells good: from an apple pie or cookies baking, for example. Hide the kitty litter.
* Put vases of fresh flowers throughout the house.
* Pleasant background music is a nice touch.