By Lana Simon, Communications Specialist

When my husband and I decided to move to a bigger home, we then found ourselves in first-time seller shoes. We were faced with the daunting process of selling our condo in order to purchase our new dream home. We had a nail-biting experience of hoping our place would sell. We cleaned all the time and did minor repairs to make it spic and span! We received the good, bad and ugly offers, but in the end, we finally got the winning deal.

Here’s some of the things we learned to avoid and will certainly put into action when we find ourselves in the market again.

1. Overpricing your home. We all want to get a high selling price for our home. But, it’s important to be realistic about its value. Our Realtor provided us with comparative information and priced our condo correctly. We ended up getting multiple offers and chose the one that was the best for us.

2. Ignoring curb appeal. Whether you like it or not, people do judge a book by the cover and they will judge your house the same way. Think about how the outside of your house looks and how you can fix it up. Give your front door a facelift with some paint or plant some colorful flowers out front. And, of course don’t forget to put those nasty garbage cans away. With a few minor changes you can catch a buyer’s eye when they drive by.

3. Overdoing home improvements. You don’t have to break the bank remodeling your kitchen or bath before listing your home. Simple updates can make a big difference, such as changing out faucets and cabinet hardware to freshen the look. We made minor repairs when we were selling and updated our appliances. When we were done, my husband and I said we should have done it sooner so we could have enjoyed it, too!

4. Not getting your home inspected before listing it. When it comes to selling, nobody likes surprises. To avoid potential red flags, have your home inspected before you list. In addition, have all disclosures in place so everything is out in the open. You need to be upfront about issues with your house and know the condition of the roof, furnace or hot water heater.

5. Not depersonalizing your home. As a pack-rat, it was a real challenge for me to de-clutter our place. Our agent recommended that we store what we didn’t need. So, I packed up some boxes and brought them to my parent’s basement. When selling, make your home a clean slate, so buyers can picture themselves living in your house. It’s important to remove your photos and personal items. It’s not an easy task, but at least you’ll get a jumpstart on your packing.

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