Getting Your Property Ready to Sell
In preparing your Muskoka waterfront cottage to sell, ask yourself over and over if your cottage looks like someone else’s dream cottage. Cottages in move-in condition tend to be inviting to buyers; cottages that are in like-new condition typically sell fastest and procures the best price because it outshines the competition. With that in mind, here are a few things to consider as you look over your cottage when getting ready to sell.
Remember the sixty-second rule: that’s all the time you have to create a good first impression! Mow the lawn, rake leaves, trim trees and shrubs that keep light out of your cottage, and remove dead plants. It will be easier to sell your cottage if the buyer can see it, outside and in. Pick up tools, garbage cans, hoses, toys, and building materials and store them neatly in a storage area. Replace broken or missing roof shingles, and straighten and clean the gutters and downspouts. Clean all windows and mend torn screens. Paint your cottage and/or trim, if necessary and re-stain your decks and docks. This will help improve curb appeal more than any other fix-up! If you decide against painting the entire house, at least consider painting the front door, window frames and shutters. Shine front door handle. Repair broken steps and walkways. Paint or replace your mailbox and post if you have one. Dress up the front entrance with some simple landscaping.
Clean, Clean, Clean
Step back for a moment and look at your cottage as if you were seeing it for the first time. Every room should be neat, spotlessly clean, dusted and uncluttered. Steam-clean the carpets and wax the floors. Wash the walls, windows and light fixtures. Tighten loose stair railings and clean all woodwork. In the event that you feel a project of this magnitude is better left to a professional, ask your real estate agent to recommend a professional cleaning service.
Use bright light bulbs in the foyer and throughout your cottage. Fill your cottage with a pleasant aroma, such as a berrry-scented plug-in or some other fresh scent.
Replace the carpet if its old or worn or remove it completely. Patch cracks and nail holes in the walls, and repaint wall in neutral off-white colours. Nail down creaking boards and stair treads. Lubricate any sticking or squeaking doors. Open all curtains, and replace them if they are getting old. Add lamps and lighting if the house is dark. Set out fresh flowers.
Rearrange or move furniture to make your rooms look more spacious. Discard worn furniture and move extra furniture to a storage unit. Remember, too much furniture and too many knick-knacks makes rooms look cluttered and small. One or two decorative items per surface is plenty, so pack the rest away, including family pictures or other personal memorabilia.
Kitchen and Baths
These rooms should sparkle! Clear off counters, and clean all appliances and fixtures. Scrub the floors and walls. Re-caulk tubs and showers. Clean these rooms thoroughly, and be sure they smell fresh!
Take those things to Goodwill that you’ll have to discard anyway when you move. Organize shelves and straighten shoes. Be sure that sliding doors operate smoothly on their tracks and knobs on kitchen drawers are secure.
Dust and wash off lint and spills from the washer and dryer. Dust and wash off the water heater. Organize any shelves and empty all trash.
Light and Bright
Do everything you can to brighten the interior. Replace wallpaper with off-white paint and repaint shabby or dark walls. Open the blinds and replace broken windows and window seals. Always maintain a comfortable temperature inside your cottage or home, even if you are away for an extended period of time.
Now, other than "Styling" your home, which we do for you when you list your property with us, you're ready!