Ready to sell your home?

Selling your home can take weeks of preparation before it's ready to be listed on the MLS (Multiple Listing Service), and finding a buyer can take weeks after that, so it's important to take these necessary steps to get your home ready for sale.

Sure, getting rid of clutter, hiding family photos, cleaning out closets, removing excess or oversized furniture, and cleaning are all super important. But here are a few additional tips to prepare your home for a quick sale.

    - Clean, clean, clean. Dust on top of the fireplace mantle and fan blades, polish your appliances and faucets, and give the windows a thorough washing. If you've already moved out or if you're too busy to stay on top of things, consider hiring a cleaning service to stop by every couple of weeks.

    - The way your house smells is very important! Some people say not to cook bacon on the day of a showing, but I'll go father than that - If you want to have a home smell like a home you'd want to live in, bake something delicious the morning of the showing. You can even leave your baked goods out for the buyers! But don't make your home smell like a fast food restaurant.

    - it's so important to get rid of clutter. Buyers should be focused on how great your living space is, not how cute your kids are or how messy the living room is. Banish piles of shoes from the entry, that depressing stack of bills on the kitchen table, and anything else that will distract a buyer from your home's better features.

    - Paint the walls neutral colors if you can. Repainting the rooms in neutral tones like tans and whites will allow buyers to focus on the spaces themselves, not the color of the walls.

    - Keep the decor simple. To help buyers imagine themselves in your space, get rid of any art or other decor that might turn off people with different tastes. A classic landscape painting? Totally fine. Your zebra print leather couch? Might want to slipcover that for showings.

    - Store personal items out of sight. A buyer will always try to envision themselves living in your home, so remove anything personal items such as family photos or kids artwork on the fridge will give them the freedom to visualize your house as their home.

    - Bring in all the light! Open up all the windows and shades to let in as much natural light in as you can.

    - Potted plants or a some fresh flowers in a vase can help bring positive energy (and nice smells!) into a space, fill in empty corners and even draw attention to areas of your home that you want buyers to notice.

    - Organize your closets and put as much as you can in storage. Storage space is a huge selling point, and if your closets are overstuffed, buyers will think you don't have enough to suit their needs. Stacking closet items you don't use every day will make everything look more organized, and the home more roomy.

    - Set aside a weekend to take on all those little jobs that didn't seem as important as other priorities in your life. Smart buyers will notice the little things! Fix a leaky faucet, and paint over scuffs marks or hand prints, and become as detail oriented as you can! Replace an old fisture, a leaky faucet, cover up beat up furniture, etc. Lots you can do here!

    - Make your bathrooms more luxurious by doing little Martha-Stewart type things, within your budget. Stack pretty washcloths, add scented candles, fix places for a few plants, new bathmats and towels that coordinate all the tones. Find a simple design in a magazine and take whatever you can from it.

    - Do a dry run through your home to make sure it's easy to walk around, and highlights aren't easy to miss. Keep a flow going from room to room, making sure buyers won't bump into furniture as they complete the tour. Fix anything that interrupts the flow.

    - If your home has a few special interior features, highlight them as focal points by drawing buyers' eyes towards those special features with bright colors or accessories like plants, a group of colorful throw pillows, anything that can draw a buyer's attention to that lovely feature that you just KNOW will help sell your home.

    - Make sure you don't overlook curb appeal. Many buyers won't even enter a home if they are put off by something outside, so make sure your home's exterior looks great. Trim shrubbery, weed flower beds, fix peeling paint, mow and fix the lawn. The front entrance also falls into this "first impression" category.