The short answer is yes you can. Here are some pro tips about how to prepare your home for sale.The basic mantra is declutter, declutter, declutter. Less will be more (money) if we present your home clean and neat as a pin. Unless you’re willing to dial down your price expectations (and you aren’t) you’ve got a little manual labor ahead of you. Before the listing photos are snapped, and long before your first showing, you’ll need to make your place truly ship-shape.
PACK IT UP. Grandma’s collection of adorable Hummel figurines has to go—at least into a box. Ditto that wall of family pictures, the stash of dog toys, the Lego minefield in the kid’s room, and your door-full of souvenir refrigerator magnets. Purging doesn’t mean ridding your life of your beloved tchotchkes, you just need to remove them from your home. Storage unit here we come!
DEEP CLEAN IT. Sorry, but your trusty Swiffer and a bottle of Windex aren’t going to cut it this time. Selling your apartment requires a deep clean, the sort provided by a team of uniformed professionals. Add a line for it in your budget. Kitchen, bathrooms, floors, windows, all of it—prying eyes will find the crumbs and cobwebs. Don’t worry about the walls for now; we have bigger plans for them.
MAKE IT SHINE. Yes, you should paint. Fresh paint looks terrific and that sweet latex-y scent is catnip to prospective buyers. It doesn’t matter if the walls are already white: You’ll paint them whiter. And by all means, do some research: Not all white paints are created equal. Some are searing and cold, others are dingy and yellow. This is a good time to take a look at your floors, too. That cruddy carpeting in the bedroom, the curling vinyl in the kitchen, that spot near the door where the varnish is worn to bare wood— address it before it ends up on somebody’s Instagram, hashtag #ick.
FIX IT OR PITCH IT. If it’s broken, now’s the time to make it right. Seriously consider replacing the almost-cold-enough fridge or the almost-hot-enough oven. Fix the drippy faucet you’ve gotten used to and the off-kilter blinds in the bedroom. Even if something works just fine but looks as if you found it on the curb, it may need to go. Remember: You’re not doing it for the buyer; you’re doing it for yourself.