Thinking about selling? Here's what to do
Let's talk about listing property. What should you do if you are thinking of selling?
First thing you should do is contact a real estate agent. Why? Because they can tell you how the market is and give you suggestions of what you can do to improve the marketability of your property. What do I mean by that? When I tour a property I might be listing I am getting a feel for the house (helping me to set a price range) but I'm also checking the house for what the seller should do in preparation to sell.
What things? The big ones are, 1) Depersonalization--the simplest explanation is to make the house so a buyer can see their family living there...not yours. Take down most of your personal photos, paint walls a neutral color, and pack up the trophies & collections. Which leads us to, 2) De-clutter...you're moving so why not rent a storage unit and start boxing items. Why rent a storage unit? Where else are you going to put the boxes? Basement? Garage? Attic? Buyers need to see those areas as well so I strongly recommend sellers store packed items off site. What should be packed away? Most everything you aren't using. The rule of thumb is a third of the furniture, a third of the personal items, such as clothing, kitchen items, etc., and 1/2 the artwork. There are a number of reasons for this such as wanting the potential buyers to be able to envision living there, wanting them to admire the house (not your decorating style), less furniture can help the rooms feel bigger, and it gives you a head start on packing when you negotiate a purchase offer!
What are some of the other things sellers should do to their house before listing? It varies from house to house which is why it is important to consult with an experienced real estate agent. A fresh coat of paint does wonders. Curb appeal is essential. Identifying and addressing any structural issue is always a good idea (it is very important to not hide any material defects, if there are any!).
The most important thing, though, is that you talk with a real estate agent; one who will use their knowledge and experience to help you prepare your house so it will sell for the most amount of money in the least amount of time