First Impressions – Ready Your Listing for a Great Showing

You’ve decided to market your property for sale… You chose the right agent, someone with experience and a real go getter. Now it’s time for the deal-making or deal-breaking, all important first showings. Thanks to your agent, who’s gotten the word out, taken great photos, spread your listing all over the internet, requests for showings start coming in and your listing shows 4 times in the first week… then you wait. There’s no response from buyers, agents, no offer, and another week goes by with your house on the market. Why? The reason could be one of these so-called showing “killers” that could be sabotaging your hard work and ultimately delaying a good deal:

1.Strong common household odors: Showing successfully is about eliminating the obstacles that prevent buyers from seeing your home’s true value. One huge showing “killer” can be a home’s odor (odors that you’ve become accustomed to.) Whether it’s cigarette smoke, pet odor, a musky basement or strong cooking spices, make sure you remember these handy tricks for eliminating undesirable odors that you can’t see, and may forget are offensive to some buyers. Quick fixes:
• Bowl of Vinegar Overnight — Sit a bowl of vinegar in a smelly room overnight and it will help soak up the unwelcomed odor.
• Happy Hour Spray — Add 2-parts water and 1-part cheap vodka into a spray bottle and spray almost any area in the room. The mixture grabs the smell and evaporates.
• Have Coffee and an Orange — Coffee grounds and orange peels are great odor neutralizers. Add one of them to a bowl in the room, inside the trash can, or down the garbage disposal to help eliminate odors.
2. A Scummy Situation. Another thin layer that can stand between sellers and a sale is soap scum. Two of the most important rooms to “shine” are the kitchen and bathroom. Unfortunately, these rooms are where soap scum tends to accumulate. Try this:
• The Glove and the Dryer Sheet — Grab a plastic glove and a dryer sheet. Cover your hand with the glove and wipe away the scum in a fast circular motion with a dryer sheet. This is one of the fastest ways to clean bathtubs, showers, sinks, and countertops in a flash.
3. Clutter’s a killer. We all know this, but what to do when storage is a real problem? This is especially true when you are packing and preparing to move. Try one or several of these “stylish basket options” for putting things away:
• Wonderful wicker for the traditional home;
• Cool canvas for the modern spaces;
• Rugged rubber boxes for outdoors and/or garages.
AND FINALLY, Learn How to Prep for a Showing Fast — Become a Showing Prep Ninja!First impressions can mean everything. Everyday some buyer prospect spots one decor issue that turns them off and they miss the value of a great house. Seller: discuss with your agent the ways you can have you home “ready to shine” within two hours, a reasonable time to receive notice of a showing request. Here are some hints that I suggest to Sellers: Have plans to secure pets (make arrangements for someone to “put the dog away), or use a crate; keep litter boxes and other “pet areas” clean; Clean-up after each meal, never leave dishes in the sink; Have “new” towels on the racks at all times in the bathrooms and keep the towels you use every day on hooks in a closet; All beds should be made each morning and do a quick wipe of surfaces in both the kitchen and bathrooms before you leave in the morning. These simple and quick tasks will go a long way to have your listing stand out beyond the others.

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