Fine-Tuning Your Home's First Impression

By John Voket, RISMedia Columnist


Whether you are getting ready for a job interview, preparing to meet someone special for the first time, or selling your home, first impressions are vital. As the popular spring selling season approaches, now is the time for you to begin preparing your home for sale. The experts at Showhomes encourage you to prepare to make the best impression so prospective buyers make the decision to view your home.

Thomas Scott, vice president of Operations for Showhomes Franchise Corporation says your home's curb appeal is what influences people to look. It's your first point of contact with a buyer and it better be a good one- so trim overgrown bushes, weed beds and add a fresh layer of mulch; clean your front door and repaint if needed. Consider adding a fresh doormat - thick sisal or coco mats make the best first impression; keep the grass cut, edged and blown; and plant some color in the beds to add contrast.

Start thinking clean by pressure-washing your driveway and sidewalks. The driveway is one of the largest visual elements buyers see and a dirty or stained driveway sets a poor tone. And while you're at it, pressure wash decks and patios, too. Outdoor living space makes a home look larger, and can draw people outside, making them feel more comfortable with the home.

Clean windows inside and out - this often overlooked item really makes a huge difference. Even a spotlessly clean home will look grungy with dirty windows. And consider replacing worn carpet - nothing runs buyers off quicker than worn and stained carpet! Replace the top layer with inexpensive neutral colored carpet and you will always recoup the investment.

Don't forget, vacant houses are vulnerable to low-ball offers and often sell for 15-20% below list price because they are empty and uninviting. So, perhaps you should consider hiring a whole-house staging company if you really want to get the best results.

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2013. All rights reserved.