Archive for the 'Open House Prep' Category

Open House Safety

Make Safety an Open House Priority

By Mike Gambino & Mary Jones
Prudential Patterson Realtors

An open house can be a great marketing tool, but it also means exposing your home and family to countless strangers. Don’t assume that every person who visits your home is an earnest, potential homebuyer. It’s important to take security seriously. Here are some common security measures that can pull double-duty, keeping you and your family safe while enhancing your home’s marketability:

Remove personal items such as family photographs, your children’s artwork, calendars that include daily routines and other items that may reveal the names of your family members or everyday life. Removing or packing away these items will not only enhance your privacy, it will also help keep the potential homebuyer focused on your home and not your family. A house that’s been depersonalized shows better because it’s easier for the buyer to visualize living in the house.
Identity theft is a growing problem, so be sure to remove or lock up all credit cards, bills, health insurance information and anything else that contains personal information like social security numbers and bank account numbers. Of course, this step removes clutter from your counters, maintaining visual appeal.
Remove or lock up jewelry, cash and other valuables; firearms and other weapons; and all prescription medication.
Make sure the house is well-lit and keep all interior and exterior walkways clear of clutter and other debris.
After each showing, take a thorough walk-through of your house and make sure all of the doors and windows are shut and locked, and that no items or valuables are missing.

In addition to safeguarding your property and identity, there are precautions you should take to protect yourself if you are present during an open house. Ideally, your real estate professional will be representing you during the open house, so that potential home buyers feel comfortable snooping around, opening cupboards and speaking freely about the home. However, if you do find that you are in the home alone, or are selling your home on your own, consider a few tips from the pros:

Never turn your back on a potential buyer. Instead, let the buyer lead you through the house. This allows you to watch the buyer and avoid becoming cornered or trapped.
Employ the buddy system. If you must show the house yourself, enlist the help of family or friends. This rule is especially important if the home is located in an isolated area.
Have a visitor roster and make sure everyone who tours your home signs it and includes their phone number and address. This will help you keep track of who is viewing your home.
Know and have a plan for the fastest escape route for each part of your home.

The open house process is just one step toward selling your home. A real estate professional can provide you with a fresh set of eyes and will tour your home and point out safety measures you may have overlooked as well as answer other questions you may have about selling your home.

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Mike Gambino and Mary Jones are part of Prudential Patterson Realtors® and can be reached at (800) 321-8586 or contacted by e-mail at WeCanSellHomes@sbcglobal.net . You may also visit us at http://www.WeCanSellHomes.com

While the contents in this article will apply in most states, they may vary in your particular locale. Mike Gambino & Mary Jones are licensed salespersons in Missouri.

Prudential Patterson Realtors is an independently owned and operated member of Prudential Real Estate Affiliates, Inc., a Prudential Financial company. Equal Housing Opportunity. ehoc-blog-jpeg.JPG

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Preparing Your Home for a Successful Open House

Preparing Your Home for a Successful Open House

By Mike Gambino & Mary Jones
Prudential Patterson Realtors

Buyers are drawn to homes that appeal to their senses. This is important to remember when preparing your home for an Open House. Through sight, sound and smell, buyers should leave your home with a lasting impression. Here are some tips to showcase your home in the best-possible light.

Exterior
Start outside by inspecting the front of your home from across the street. Does it have curb appeal? It should look inviting, with a trimmed lawn and flowerbed and a freshly painted front door. Polish door handles and knockers and replace worn items such as a rusty doorbell. Consider adding a new doormat and flowering plants at the entrance. Do the windows need cleaning? Be sure to remove oil stains from the driveway.

Next check the side and back yards. Add some flowering plants to the back as well. Rearrange the outdoor furniture to look inviting. Put away gardening tools. Tidy around the grill area.

Interior
Now focus on the inside of the home where cleanliness, space, smell and lighting are key. First, get your house in tip-top condition by cleaning and clearing away clutter. Steam clean and vacuum the carpet. Make sure your floors are waxed and shiny. Touch up nicks on walls and make sure the porcelain sinks and tubs and metallic fixtures shine. Your kitchen and bathrooms should pass the white glove test. Be conscious of any lingering odors such as smoke, pets or strong-smelling foods. You may need to air out your home prior to the Open House. Consider grinding fresh lemons in the garbage disposal or even baking chocolate chip cookies. And don’t forget to empty all trashcans.

Next, set the mood. You want buyers to be able to picture your home as their own. Consider rearranging the furniture so that rooms look more spacious. Add accessories from rooms with too many furnishings to those that appear bare. Look at your countertops in the kitchen and bathrooms and the tops of your bureaus. Do they seem cluttered? Clear away and store as much as possible. The idea is to make your home appear spacious.

Lighting is also an important factor in creating an inviting atmosphere. Bright lights provide a cheerful environment and make a small space appear larger. Pull back all the drapes and open the blinds. Turn on all the lights. Make sure all the light sockets have working bulbs and install the maximum-wattage bulb that is safe for that fixture. For rooms that you want to have a warm, cozy feeling, use softer lights.

Don’t forget little touches such as fresh flowers, lighted candles in the bathrooms, new logs in the fireplace, or a bowl of fresh fruit on the kitchen counter. You may even want to set your dining room table with color-coordinated table settings.

An Open House is a terrific way to show your property to many people in a short amount of time. However, keep in mind that buyers may see seven or eight homes in a single day. The most memorable home will be the one that seemed the brightest, the most spacious and the most cheerful. So, don’t rely on buyers to use their imagination.
Help them capture it. Work with your real estate professional to get more tips on creating an unforgettable home.

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Mike Gambino and Mary Jones are part of Prudential Patterson Realtors® and can be reached at (800) 321-8586 or contacted by e-mail at WeCanSellHomes@sbcglobal.net .

You may also visit us at http://www.WeCanSellHomes.com

While the contents in this article will apply in most states, they may vary in your particular locale. Mike Gambino & Mary Jones are licensed salespersons in Missouri.

Prudential Patterson Realtors is an independently owned and operated member of Prudential Real Estate Affiliates, Inc., a Prudential Financial company. Equal Housing Opportunity.
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