Sherri Toerper Realtor® ~ Century 21 Grande Prairie, Alberta

Century 21
Grande Prairie Realty Inc.

780 933 6636

How to Prepare your Home for Sale

When selling their home, the first question sellers often have is how to prepare. The first step to prepare a home for sale is always staging.

Staging your house often produces the quickest and best results. Contrary to what some may say, staging is not just redecorating. In fact, it’s just about rearranging your belongings to improve the general appearance of your home. After all, the nicer your home looks, the more people who will want to buy it.

You also don’t have to stage your home yourself. Your Realtor can recommend a professional stager. Often times, this service pays for itself: both in the ease of selling and final price of your home.

Create Curb Appeal

First impressions count. In fact, they count for more than we think. Creating good curb appeal is important. After all, from the pictures of your home to those open houses, the first thing potential buyers see is the front.

This can require a number of different tidying tasks for you, but can greatly increase the appearance of your home. For example, it may require a general clean-up, painting front window frames and doors, keeping the lawn mowed and the bushes trimmed, planting colourful flowers, or clearing those sidewalks.


Less is more. This is especially true in crafting good home appeal. For example, keeping counters free of personal items, paring furnishings down to the bare essentials, and pack up those cute knickknacks can all help de-clutter your home. After all, the new buyers need to imagine their stuff in your home. It’s hard to do that when there’s a lot.

Make the House Shine

It’s a fact: a home in immaculate condition sells more quickly. It also tends to sell for more money.  So, prepare your home: keep those windows washed, those bathrooms scrubbed, and that kitchen gleaming. Want to take it to the next level? Remember, nothing shines like a home with freshly steamed carpets.

Pro Tip: You might love your pets, but it’s likely you’ve forgotten their smell. For the best sale, keep pet odours to a minimum. That might mean isolating that litter box and tucking away those slobbery toys.


Much like de-cluttering, de-personalizing allows buyers to imagine themselves in your home. When you pack up family heirlooms and personal photographs, you make the space more generic. With that, buyers can often see their personal belongings in the home.

Make Minor Repairs

That ding in the wall? Those scuff marks behind the door? Those all have the potential to affect the sale of your home. After all, it’s work the new buyers would have to do.

Luckily, these can often be repaired easily. In fact, they’re an important part of how you prepare your home. By patching holes in the wall and possibly painting the walls a neutral colour, you greatly increase the base value of the home. Other, more expensive repairs might include replacing cracked floors or counter tiles, leaky faucets, wobbly doors, and burned-out bulbs.

If you’re ever wondering what exactly might affect the sale of the house, check with your Realtor. After all, they know best.

Remove Favourite Items

You know how you own awesome things? Buyers might think so too. And, if the buyer thinks it’s super amazing, they might request it as part of the sale.

But, if they can’t see something, they can’t request it in their offer. As a result, it’s best practice to prepare by removing anything you don’t want buyers to get fixated on. This includes removing fixtures and furniture coverings if you intend to take them to your new home.

Rearrange Closets and Cabinets

If you have tidy closets, buyers will know the space can be kept tidy. From coat closets to medicine cabinets, the more organized your space, the more desirable it becomes. For this to work best, it’s recommended you keep any medicines and personal items out of sight.

Show your Home in the Best Light

Nobody likes a dark home. At least, not usually. To create a warm and inviting environment, make sure you open your drapes. Drenching as much of the house in sunlight can create a warm and cozy space.

For bonus points, consider purchasing fresh flowers for display. Oh, and make sure you keep the temperature comfortable. After all, no one wants to be freezing or sweltering during a viewing.

Lighten up at Night

Keep your home well-lit! Turning on all your lights – inside and out – in the evening can create the right tone for later viewings. This adds as much warmth to your home as possible. It also makes prospective buyers feel welcome.

Keep a Low Profile

Nobody knows your home as well as you do. But agents know buyers – what they need and what they want. Your agent will have an easier time articulating the virtues of your home if you stay in the background.

Prepare to be Absent During Showings

Buyers want to see a home, not socialize with the previous owner. Therefore, when your Realtor informs you of a viewing, try your best to leave the house. This makes potential buyers more comfortable to view your home.

Prepare, But Don’t Apologize

The humblest abodes deserve no apologies. Your home is yours, no matter the quirks. And, if a potential buyer makes an unkind comment, let your Realtor handle the situation.

Prepare Your Pets

Again, those pesky fur babies! Dogs and cats are great companions. They really are. However, when you’re showing your home, pets have a talent for getting in the way. So, do everyone a favour: Keep Fluffy and Spot outside. If that’s not possible, prepare a spot for them a least somewhat out of the way.

Think Safely

You might be okay living with a hazard in the home. However, potential buyers are usually less thrilled. Homeowners learn to live with all kinds of self-set booby traps. From roller skates on the stairs and extension cords across the living room to slippery throw rugs and low hanging overhead lights, your home might be a bit dangerous. To avoid an accident, and to ensure the quickest home sale, prepare your residence to be as non-perilous as possible.

Be Prepared

It never hurts to be prepared. Often, your Realtor may need to show your home with little notice. So, keep those bedrooms tidy and those bathrooms shining, just in case.

Think Volume

Rock-and-Roll will never die. But it might kill a real estate transaction. When it’s time to show your home, its time to turn down the stereo or TV.

Don’t Turn Your Home into a Second-Hand Store

You’re selling your home, not everything in it. When prospects come to view your home, don’t offer up furniture or fixtures. Let them decide what they might want to come with the house. Or, you might just lose the biggest sale of all.

Avoid Crowd Scenes

Potential buyers often feel like intruders. This becomes more pronounced when there are tons of people home.  Rather than giving your house the attention it deserves, they’re likely to hurry through. Keep your company at a minimum.

Defer to Experience

You hired a Realtor to handle the sale of your home. So, when prospects want to talk price, terms or other real estate matters, let them speak to an expert – your Real Estate Sales Associate.

Feel Prepared?

If you’re ready – and so is your home – let’s talk about market value. 

Need to prepare a bit more? For a 30-day guide on the best preparation methods, check out this blog article. 

Ready to talk to a Realtor? Contact Sherri Toerper today!