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Top 5 Things to Consider When Deciding to Sell Your Home

Selling a home can be a daunting task. After all, it involves a little more than just planting the “For Sale” sign on your front lawn or uploading a few random photos of your home.  If you want the most out of your home (like most of us are), there are a few things that you, as the homeowner, can do that are bound to pay off. Some things are easy, and others may require a little work—time to roll up your sleeves and get to work before listing your home.  Check out our top five things to consider before selling your home.

Find a Great Real Estate Agent

Are you considering selling your home yourself and saving the money you would otherwise pay a real estate agent? It can be tempting but resist the urge because in the long run, it is penny-wise but pound foolish. Do your research.  Find a real estate agent that knows your specific market.  Get to know them and make sure your agent is a good fit. They should be someone you are comfortable working with and trust to sell your house for top dollar.  Your real estate agent will walk you through the selling process and manage most pre-listing, marketing, showings, and negotiations. One of the most valuable uses of a great agent is they will get your home in front of buyers that are looking, and they will get it closed faster—meaning you pay fewer mortgage payments.

The importance of Curb Appeal

The first thing a potential buyer will notice about your home is the outside; unfortunately, people tend to judge a book by its cover.  Poor curb appeal can cause a buyer to decide it’s not worth going inside.  If they have a great first impression of your home, they will be inspired to stop by an open house or contact a real estate agent for a tour.  You can increase your curb appeal with a few simple fixes.  Planting colorful flowers or repainting your front door can be a calling card for a prospective buyer.  If you need advice on how to increase your curb appeal, ask your real estate agent how others have done so in your area.

Declutter and Depersonalize Your Space to Help Sell your Home

When it comes to selling your home, less is more.  Nothing is off-limits to curious buyers.   First, do a clean sweep of surfaces such as windowsills, counters, tables, and other visible areas. Next, tackle behind closed doors, drawers, and cabinets. A home overflowing with stuff makes it difficult for potential buyers to see the space for their belongings. This makes it a perfect time to pre-pack or donate items. This will also help once you’ve accepted an offer since some things will already be packed. Depersonalizing your space means removing distractions such as personal items and family photos. You want the potential buyer to be able to visualize themselves in that space. The goal is to create a blank canvas so buyers can make their vision of living there and loving it. Generally speaking, the less cluttered, the cleaner, and more well-decorated your home is, the more appeal it has to buyers.

Repaint Walls to Neutral Tones and Touch Up

You may love your orange accent wall, but it could be a turnoff for someone who dislikes that color. Neutral paint tones are always a safe bet when selling your home.  A potential buyer will rarely dislike the neutral wall colors.  Neutral paint colors also give the potential home buyer a blank canvas to envision their colors of choice in the room.  All rooms may not require a fresh coat of paint but may need some special attention.  Scrub the walls, baseboards, and doors.  Look the walls over and touch up any spots that need a minor repair.  Clean up scuff marks made by furniture or children.  These simple things are inexpensive and make your home sparkle and look cared for.

Conduct a Smell Test

Homeowners often become used to the smells of their own living spaces.  Experts recommend bringing in a third party to sniff out your home.  They may notice odors you do not, such as pet odor or stubborn kitchen odors. Even slight odors can be a deal-breaker for a potential home buyer. If the smell is pervasive, be ready to do some deep cleaning.  Many potential buyers have become accustomed to masking techniques like candles or plug-in deodorizers.  Covering up the odor can also lead to losing a potential buyer if they dislike the scent.

If you are thinking about putting your home on the market, consider these five tips before doing so.  Some are simple, while others may take a little time and effort.  In the end, they are bound to pay off once buyers start to notice.



Jim McInerney Real Estate is the region’s most innovative real estate company, representing spectacular properties and selective home buyers. Providing exceptional real estate services in a unique luxury market like Southern California is an endeavor we perform with professionalism, integrity, and a lifetime of local knowledge on behalf of our clients. For decades, we’ve been here to help clients either sell or find and acquire their dream home while sharing in the excitement and protecting them from the stressors of the process. Call us today!

7863 Girard Avenue, Suite 208

La Jolla, CA 92037

(858) 480-9945

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DRE 01334502