5 Must-Do Fixes When Prepping Your Home for Sale

5 Must-Do Fixes When Prepping Your Home for Sale

Home sellers are usually concerned about two things first and foremost: how long it will take for their home to sell, and how much money it will sell for. The answers to those two questions are mostly tied to two factors.

The asking price and condition of a home are what typically determine how fast it sells and for how much. A home priced correctly from the start that’s in great condition should sell fast and for top dollar.

Getting your home in tip-top shape before putting it on the market usually involves a little work. Here are five must-do fixes when prepping your home for sale.

Drywall repairs

Even if you’ve painted recently and your walls don’t need a fresh coat, it’s important to inspect them for any damage. Scuff marks, gouges, and holes in your home’s drywall are always noticeable and an immediate turnoff for homebuyers.

With some spackling paste and sandpaper, most homeowners can tackle minor drywall fixes themselves. For major damage that you can’t handle yourself, it’s imperative to hire someone to take care of it.

Unusual odors

Another big turnoff for homebuyers is any unusual odor in a home. Sometimes, there’s an odor in the basement. Occasionally, a laundry room or kitchen has something that’s causing a subtle smell. Bathrooms can smell funny over time, especially if you have young children.

It’s important to clean your home thoroughly, of course, but it’s also vital to search for the source of any strange smells, identify them, and rectify the problems. Don’t try to cover odors up with air fresheners or freshly baked cookies. Fix them instead.

Out-of-place noises

Just as your nose knows what odors need to be remedied, your ears, too, can let you know about your home’s condition. Loose floorboards that groan, squeaky doors, rattling windows or shutters, and loud appliances can all send the message to home buyers that your home is old or not well-maintained.

Squeaks and creaks can often be fixed with a drop of oil or a spray lubricant. Floors or windows that make noises sometimes require more extensive repairs or even replacement. A loud, banging dishwasher or garbage disposal might also need to be repaired or replaced.

Any signs of moisture

Moisture is one of the worst enemies a home can have, and any sign that water has entered where it wasn’t supposed to be is detrimental when you’re selling your home.

If you’ve ever had a roof or window leak, it’s hopefully been repaired. But it’s also imperative to fix any damage it caused, even if it’s only a water stain. Mold and mildew also must be removed, and basement walls that have evidence of water encroachment should be patched, re-sealed, and painted.

Damaged, excessively worn, or stained flooring

There are three things that are present in every room in your house: walls, ceilings, and floors. Walls and ceilings are pretty much all the same, but buyers’ eyes are always drawn to flooring.

They will notice whether the floor is hardwood, tile, or some other sort of hard material. They take note of where they see carpeting. They might appreciate that a quality luxury vinyl tile product has perhaps modernized your home.

But they’ll also notice any damage, excessive wear, and stains. And while those defects might not be dealbreakers, you can be sure buyers will offer a lower sales price if they know they have to repair or replace floors.

The bottom line

If you want to sell your home quickly and for as much money as possible, it’s critical that it be in top-notch condition. Addressing the must-do fixes first can set you on the right path for a successful home sale.