Homeowner Tips for
Selling Your Home

20 Ways to Make a Lasting Impression

Buyers pay more money for homes needing less work—plain and simple. Little details make all the difference. Spacious, clean and well-maintained homes stand out, selling faster and for more money.

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First Impressions

  • Lawns: cut grass, edge walks, trim hedges, weed gardens
  • In winter: remove snow and ice from walks and driveway, use sand/salt if necessary
  • Front porch / verandah: clean or paint, if necessary
  • Siding: hose down siding and remove unsightly marks, especially siding leading up to the front door
  • Front door and trim: clean or paint, if necessary
  • Windows: clean windows and paint trim, if necessary, especially at the front of the home

Inside the Home

  • Front entrance: clean any marks off of the walls (paint, if necessary), polish floors
  • Kitchen: remove clutter from counters and refrigerator, clean appliances, sinks, countertops and cabinet faces, tuck away garbage cans
  • Bathrooms: clean mirrors, sinks, tubs, shower doors, toilets and grout — put out fresh, clean towels, tuck away garbage cans
  • Living room / great room / family room: remove clutter, polish floors or steam clean carpets, vacuum
  • Bedrooms: remove clutter, organize closets
  • Storage areas: remove extra unwanted items
  • Utility / laundry room: dust and clean utility and laundry machines, have furnace serviced, if necessary

For a Fresh Look

  • Paint: a coat of fresh paint goes a long way — choose a neutral but modern colour, remember to check with your local hardware store or paint shop for the latest hue trends
  • Flooring: polish floors, steam clean carpets, repair damaged or worn areas
  • Clutter: pack unused items around the home, clear out closets
  • Lights: clean fixtures, use bright and warm light bulbs, fix faulty switches

Set the Stage for Success

  • Lights on: turn on all lights before showings, open blinds during the day, close them at night
  • Temperature: should be at 20°C (room temperature), basements should be warm
  • Smells: make sure your home smells fresh — try opening windows, or using light scented sprays or “Nilodor” for stronger smells

Spend your Renovation Dollars Wisely!

Whether you’re thinking of selling your home soon or doing some upgrades for you—here are the renovations that’ll bring you the best return on your investment.

Where to even start?
The two rooms in the home that can make or break a sale are the:

• kitchen
• bathroom

These two rooms are usually the hardest (and most expensive) to change, but good news - they offer a much higher return on their investment than the average home renovation

Where to focus those renovation funds?

1) Paint - nothing says modern and clean like fresh, up-to-date colours. A fresh coat of paint is, in my opinion, one of the best investments you can make when selling your home.

Don’t forget to paint your front door!

Don’t have a lot of money to spend on your home? You can do the painting yourself (consult with the experts at your local hardware store to be sure you’ve got the tools and know-how to do the job right).

2) Bathroom - RE/MAX Western Canada reports that bathroom renovations have a 56% higher return than the average home improvement. Impressive! The most important bath to upgrade is the ensuite bath, or if you don’t have one, the main bath in the home.

3) Kitchen - this gathering place in the home tends to “make or break” a sale. Doing renovations on the kitchen can bring up to a 44% higher investment than other popular upgrades.

4) Flooring - updated flooring can deliver as much as a 22% more return than other popular upgrades to your home. I always try to stay as green as possible, so my recommendation is to try for proper maintenance of your flooring first and foremost, then if you want to upgrade:

• choose neutral colours
• refinish or recycle your current flooring for other uses
• underlay for carpets is key (installing good underlay can make less expensive carpet seem more posh, and you may not have to replace the underlay when upgrading to new carpet, so less ends up in the landfill).

5) Curb appeal - be sure to keep your walks clean, rake up last fall’s leaves (if they’re still on your lawn) and keep the front yard well-maintained.

How do I know all this?!
Throughout my career in the real estate industry, I have helped hundreds of Edmonton sellers get more money for their homes, by providing advice and assistance with home staging, renovation tips and more.

Statistics are taken from RE/MAX Western Canada.

Any information herein is not warranted - I am not a real estate appraiser or a lawyer, I’m just putting my thoughts out there to help you get more money for your home. Always consult with an expert (or many experts) before undertaking any renovations, or spending any of your hard-earned money!

More tips and videos are available at RE/MAX Western Canada Renovation Tips