If your home is for sale and you want top dollars for it, you should already know that buyers don’t want to find things like overflowing garbage cans, cat litter boxes. and a kitchen counter loaded with dirty dishes. Those items can cause a buyer to turn right around and leave.
But those aren’t the only things that will either make a buyer leave immediately or cause him or her to choose another house over yours.
Number one – even more important than the trash, cat litter, and dirty dishes – is odor. The obvious culprits are smoke, pet odors, rotting trash, mold, and diaper pails. But strong cleaning odors and room deodorizers trigger a thought that you must be trying to cover up something foul.
In addition, many people are allergic to both perfumes and chemical cleaners, so they’ll leave before getting all the way into the house.
Next is dirt – anywhere but in the flower beds and garden spot. Dirt includes grunge on tile grout, dust bunnies in the corners, dust hanging from your ceiling fans, dirty windows, stains on the carpet, and soap scum on the shower/tub door.
If you have a dog and a yard – another huge offender is dog poop. If it’s there, someone is sure to step in it, so clean the yard and put the dog in your car or the kennel before visitors arrive.
All clutter needs to go – and dirty clothes need to go farthest! No one wants to look at your laundry, especially not your underwear. Put it in a hamper with a lid – or wash it and put it away!
Personal toiletries. Buyers don’t want to look at your toothbrush, curling iron, razor, or any of the other things that are often left on the bathroom vanity. If there’s no way to store these neatly on the shelves, put them in a box and slide the box under your bed when not in use.
Your pets. Yes, they’re wonderful, but they don’t belong in the house when prospective buyers are coming through. Some of those prospects will pay more attention to your pet than they will to the house, while others will decide against the house because they don’t like pets and don’t want any lingering odors or pet hair.
In addition, leaving your pets in the house with strangers is not safe for the pets or the strangers. So, take them with you or put them in a kennel.
If your house is vacant – dead bugs can be a problem, and they’re a major turn off. If you can’t go sweep up every day or two, hire someone to do it.
The most surprising thing home buyers don’t want to find in your house:
Wall of photos.
At one time decorators were recommending the creation of a photo gallery on one or more of the walls in your home. Homeowners had a lot of fun with it and those walls were interesting to both friends and family. Today, that trend is over. But it’s not the “dated decor” that a potential home buyer will find objectionable. It’s the number of holes in the wall that were necessary to hang dozens of photos.
Potential buyers know that those holes will have to be repaired and the wall will need to be repainted. To a home buyer, that spells either “Lots of work” or “Another darned expense.”
Will those things absolutely prevent a sale?
No, they won’t. What they will prevent is a sale at market value. When buyers come in and realize that they’ll need to hire a house cleaning service to go over the house before they move in, they’ll consider the cost. Then most will triple or quadruple that cost and deduct it from their offer.
The same goes for any repairs they will need to make – including refinishing a wall full of nail holes.
All of these things are signs that the homeowner isn’t taking excellent care of the house, so they’ll wonder what else hasn’t been maintained. They may go ahead with a lower offer and then rely on a home inspection, but if lack of maintenance and cleanliness is too great, they won’t want to go to that expense, so they’ll move on to a different house.
Posted by SEESAN. He is passionate about helping others to market their homes as well as to find homes for them. He is a REALTOR at Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Fox and Roach Realtors-Bear, DE office. For a free consultation or if there’s anything he can do to help you, give him a call/text 206 715 1642 or send a message.