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As winter is upon us it is exciting and a bit overwhelming to think of getting your house ready for the spring real estate market. We often think “How will I ever get there from here?”

With the right help and frame of mind, you will be ready to sell and looking forward to a new home; one that will better suit your lifestyle and needs. You will want to present your home in the best possible light to get the highest price and sell in the least amount of time. In order to not get overwhelmed as you prepare, it is best to work in steps.

Choose a Professional Real Estate Agent Early On. You may wish to interview a few to find the right one to partner with. They come with multiple levels of services.

Tip Alert: Choose a Realtor that will not only list your house, but one that will partner with you to bring resources and ideas on how to easily work through all of the steps.

Identify and Make Repairs. A good Realtor can look at your home and tell you what repairs would make a difference in sale price and which ones aren’t worth spending money on. They can make suggestions and help you find the right help if you need it. They have access to reputable and cost- effective painters, plumbers, electricians, cleaners, movers and even people that will help you with your yard.

Remove Clutter and Depersonalize. Buyers want to envision living in your home with their belongings. Remove knickknacks, photos, extra furniture and personal items. This makes the rooms look bigger and more inviting to buyers. Pay special attention to organizing closets and storage areas. Your Realtor will give you staging and furniture placement advice to help present your house at its best.

Tip Alert: Mark and identify items in each room into three categories: Move, Sell or Donate. Your realtor can help you with recommendations on ways to work with items in all three categories or help you find a moving specialist that can work with you “hands on” in this process if needed.

Make Front Door/Porch Look Inviting. This is the first thing buyers see and money spent in this area has the highest return on the price of your home. If needed replace or have the front door painted and add a new welcome mat.

Make Everything Shine. From light fixtures and floors to everything in between, make every surface shine. Scrub every inch of kitchens and bathrooms.

Improve the Landscape, Exterior and Clean Windows. As the weather warms, look to the outside of your home to make sure your yard is at its best. Trim bushes, clean the flower beds and lay down new mulch where needed.

Find Necessary Paperwork. Locate and gather prior disclosures, inspections and paperwork from when you bought your house. Make a list of all of the improvements that you have made and things that you love about your home and neighborhood for prospective buyers to see.

Tip Alert: As you progress through these steps, always count the things each day that you have accomplished more than the things that you still need to do. It will keep you in the right frame of mind and help you to not get overwhelmed in the process.

When you finish you can confidently know that your home will show in the very best light. The Realtor you have partnered with will list your home on MLS, and sell it for the best possible price and you will happily move on to your next home.

Peggy Melbye, Realtor - Coldwell Banker Burnet

EPPIA is a networking group whose members are committed to the welfare of seniors in our community. EPPIA members meet to learn, exchange information and discuss issues in the field of aging. For more information on EPPIA and local senior resources, please visit our website at

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