Prepping for the Sale – 4 Essential Steps

by Chicago Agent

There are many details to consider when preparing a home for showings, but they can all be consolidated into three easy steps.

Prepping a property for potential buyers is a multi-tiered process, one that involves a number of steps across a number of different mediums. From writing the initial Internet listing to scrubbing the home’s interiors and exteriors for showings, a good agent has every base covered, and we’ve got the four essential steps agents must take when prepping for the sale.

  1. Be Unique, Descriptive and Specific with Your Listing – The vast majority of home searches now begin online, so make sure you are presenting an interesting listing online, whether it be on Trulia, Zillow or your personal website. This listing competes with several others! Some great tips to follow include: highlight the home’s amenities, especially ones that photographs cannot necessarily reveal (for instance, a home on a private, closed lot); be specific with brand names with appliances – “Maytag high-efficiency washing machine and dryer in unit” will always sound better than “washer/dryer in unit” – and inject narrative into your descriptions to invoke how they might feel living there, such as writing that breakfast with the family would be great on the property’s quiet, lovely back porch.
  2. Complement Your Words with Top-Notch Photography – We’re not optometrists, but we can vouch that few things are more trying on the eye than bad photography, especially with low resolution and dark lighting. You could be selling an immaculate five-bedroom Victorian in River Forest, but if it’s not photographed well, it won’t attract any attention online.
  3. Make a Strong First Impression – Once you begin scheduling showings for the property, go for maximum curb appeal with the listing, and don’t leave any stone unturned when it comes to maintenance. Trim bushes; cut the grass; spread a fresh coat of mulch; plant some new, colorful flowers; clean the gutters; and even consider some fresh paint on the front door and a new, clean welcome mat. Every little detail counts as the buyers walk from their car to the front door.
  4. Maintain a Clean Interior – Create an interior living space that is clean and meticulous. Oversee any repairs to the home, especially with windows, doors or any particularly visible object; de-clutter and depersonalize the home’s decorations so potential buyers can see themselves as the homeowner, rather than traces of the current owner; and, as a final step, organize closets and make every surface shine, especially in the kitchen (we’re suckers for sparkling faucets, ourselves).

Every property is unique, and each one will present its own challenges; thankfully, these steps are universal, and whether you’re selling a luxury condo in the Gold Coast or a modest ranch in Schaumburg, you’ll be on your way to securing a buyer for your client.

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