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Mission: Sell Your House! Part 17

When the Wallet’s Tight:  Budget Home Selling Changes 

Here are some tips from personal experience and observation that are small (and budget conscious) but can make a huge impact on the look and marketability of your home.

  • Declutter!  Take down knick knacks, clear book shelves of all but a few décor items, remove family pictures when possible, and hideaway extras in bins or ottomans.  It is amazing how much bigger a space can look when picture frames, heirlooms, rows of books, and piles of blankets are taken away.  This goes for kid toys too.  Keep them packed away for showings and pictures- a home doesn’t present well when it looks like a mini Disney. (Check out these ClutterBuster’s Before and After Pics and you’ll see what I mean!)
  • Freshen Up!  A fresh coat of paint can go a long way.  Choose modern, yet neutral tones.  A fresh coat will look great, make the space look bigger (don’t you dare put any fresh nail holes and hang your family pictures back up!) and may cover pet or smoke odors.  Don’t go trendy and color happy, keep it simple and clean.
  • Get Rid of the Wallpaper.  While this is more work, it is so important.  Wallpaper (for the most part) is never desirable to most buyers.  Save them the effort and stress and take it down and put a fresh coat of paint up.  And even though popular renovation shoes on HGTV may tell you otherwise…never ever paint over wallpaper.  It’s a bad idea.  It will never look right, stick right, and just causes more problems than anything.
  • Clear counters and appliances.  Take everything off counters so buyers can see the potential space.  Also clear off the front of all appliances (mainly the fridge).  Store the school schedule and trip magnets somewhere else for the time being.  It will make your home look bigger and cleaner.
  • Dust, Windex, and Air Freshener.  A simple dusting, a little Windex for shine, and some wall plug in air fresheners will help you for showings.  Who wants to look at a dirty house?
  • Find Fido a Sitter.  Pets can make buyers nervous.  Some buyers may be allergic.  And often pets make messes and smells in homes.  While you are trying to sell your home, find Fido or Fifi a sitter during showings.  Hide the bowls and litter.  Your buyers will have a better experience during the showing.

This article lays out awesome ideas for those who are very budget or time conscious but want to do a few things to make their home more sellable.  Some are free- like tidying up the cabinets (or tidying up everywhere for that matter!) and some are quick and easy like changing out a lighting fixture.  Go to: for more details.

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**Disclaimer: Always consult your real estate professional about any improvements you wish to make to your home before selling. Also, The numbers used in these articles are national or regional averages based on surveys, and are not guaranteed. Seek professional advice before proceeding with any projects.  Facts and Information Generally Specific to the Greater Grand Rapids area.
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