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  • Writer's pictureTeam Pinto

10 Things Most People Forget to Do Before Selling Their Waterloo Region Home

You’ve decided to sell your home, found a fantastic Waterloo Region real estate agent, and are hard at work making repairs and updates to ensure your home stands out. However, you’re probably aware that preparing to sell your home is a major undertaking. There’s a lot to do before listing your home for sale, from home improvement projects to having it staged.

Even with a to-do list, many people are prone to forgetting important tasks during the process. Fortunately, to assist you as you prepare to sell your home, we’ve compiled a list of the top things most home sellers overlook that could cost you the sale.

So, before you put your house on the market, keep these 10 things in mind and make sure not to overlook those that apply to your Waterloo Region home for sale.

Declutter and Organize Cabinet and Closets

You may have decluttered your home, organized your desk and other surfaces, and put your antiques and personal belongings away, but have you tackled your closets and cabinets?

Potential homebuyers are likely to look in your closets, kitchen drawers, and cabinets during a home tour, so you’ll want to highlight what your house has to offer in terms of storage. Begin by decluttering your closets, cabinets, and drawers, ensuring that you only keep enough belongings in each to highlight the space’s potential. Consider it an extension of your home staging for your storage areas.

There’s a lot to do to get your house ready to sell before it goes on the market. If you’re overwhelmed or don’t know where to start, consider hiring a professional organizer to help you organize your home, so you can focus on other important tasks.

Tackle Stains and Odors

Small stains, marks, and other flaws should be regarded as badges of honour for a home that has been well-loved. However, when it comes time to sell your home, these minor blemishes will stand out to potential buyers, so make sure to address them right away.

Begin by going outside and re-entering your home as if you were a potential buyer taking a look around for the first time. After that, walk through each room and make a list of any flaws you find. It’s possible that you’ll be surprised at how quickly your to-do list grows.

If you have pets, your home is likely to have an odor that you can no longer detect. Deep cleaning your home is a surefire way to get rid of these odors, but doing simple things like opening the windows for a few hours each day can also help (especially if there are any chemical smells lingering).

Plug-in room fresheners can also help to infuse a fresh scent throughout your home. However, don’t go overboard with artificial scents, as this may cause buyers to wonder what smell you’re trying to hide and may offend their nose to boot, especially if they are prone to allergies.

Replace All the Lightbulbs

Small tasks, such as replacing a lightbulb when it burns out, are often overlooked when preparing a Waterloo Region home for sale.

Walk through each room and make sure every lightbulb is working to keep potential buyers from being distracted by these minor flaws. Don’t forget to double-check that all the exterior lights are turned on. Open houses or home tours may take place when the sun is setting or when it is already dark, so make your home shine both inside and out depending on the time of year.

Inside and outside your home, make sure all of your light bulbs are the same color temperature To greet potential Waterloo Region homebuyers, a soft-white daylight LED bulb can create a bright but welcoming environment.

Sweat the Small Stuff

Consider each room’s unique characteristics as you prepare to sell your home, so you can maximize the potential of each space.

Greenery should be used throughout your home.

Nothing brings a room to life like a little greenery. In a living room, a potted tree can make a big difference, but even small houseplants around the house, such as on a desk or near a bedroom window, can make a big difference.

Mirrors can brighten even the smallest spaces.

You may notice that a particular space feels a little cramped as you prepare to sell your home. Consider hanging a mirror to brighten the space. Mirrors can make small spaces appear larger by creating the illusion of depth, and they can also work wonders in darker spaces by reflecting light into areas that don’t get a lot of natural light.

Rugs can add personality to a room that is otherwise uninteresting.

Using rugs to stage your space is a simple way to add character to your home. Keep in mind, however, that rugs should be used to complement a space rather than to serve as the focal point.

If you have an odd space in your house that you’ve never quite figured out what to do with, a rug could add some personality while leaving the space and its potential to the buyers’ imaginations.

Upgrade Your Outdoor Space

One of the most effective ways to make a good first impression is to improve your curb appeal. You should not, however, overlook your other outdoor areas, such as your front porch or entrance, back entrance, side yard, or backyard. You want to make the outdoor spaces around the house more appealing to potential buyers, so they can imagine themselves living as much outside as inside.

Simple touches like potted plants at your front door or fresh beauty bark around the base of your hedges and trees can make a big difference. Consider building a DIY fire pit or staging your deck with outdoor dining furniture if you don’t already have a designated outdoor entertaining space.

It’s a good idea to invest in your backyard landscaping if you don’t plan on doing a major outdoor renovation before selling your home. At the end of the day, your outdoor space is just as important as the interior of your home.

Make Use of Drone Photography

When it comes to selling a home, listing photos are powerful marketing tools, and homes with professional photos are known to sell for more money and spend less time on the market. Aerial photography is another excellent way to make your home stand out from the crowd.

Drone photography can showcase your entire property while also providing a scenic view and capturing the surrounding area. For potential buyers, an aerial shot can easily put the full scope of your property into perspective and make for eye-catching listing photos.

Not all real estate agents are familiar with the concept - Team Pinto make use of it as a matter of course when creating listing videos for our clients - but when it is available it is hugely effective.

Don’t Forget to Clean Your Gutters

Potential buyers are put off by clogged gutters, and they can lead to water damage to boot. If you don’t have time to clean your gutters while preparing your Waterloo Region home for sale, consider hiring a professional to clear and inspect your gutters so that this minor oversight doesn’t derail your efforts to sell your home quickly.

Baseboards and Crown Moulding Should Be Clean and Painted.

While it’s common to paint your home’s interior a neutral color to appeal to more buyers, many sellers overlook their baseboards and crown moulding when getting their home ready to sell.

While the crown moulding may only require minor cleaning and maintenance, your baseboards have most likely seen a lot more use, especially if you have children or pets. Clean your baseboards with simple dish soap and water to remove these unappealing blemishes. Consider refreshing them with a new coat of paint if they have seen years of wear and tear.

Focus on Your Floors

If you’re thinking about what repairs to make before selling your home, a new floor can be one of the best investments you can make. The floors are one of the first things buyers notice when they walk into a new home, so make yours stand out.

If your carpet is approaching the 10-year mark, it is most likely looking worn and in need of recarpeting. Recarpeting your floors can make a big difference in making your home look new and inviting to potential buyers. To appeal to the majority of homebuyers, you’ll want to use a neutral color, similar to what you did with your walls. If your carpet is only a few years old, however, having it professionally cleaned can help you breathe new life into it.

If you have hardwood floors, refinishing them will restore them to their former glory. This will entail sanding the floors to remove the old finish and stain, then refinishing with the desired color and sealing with one or two coats of sealer.

Get a Home Inspection Before You Sell

When you’re ready to sell your Waterloo Region home, the final – and arguably most important – step is to have a pre-sale home inspection performed. While not required, it is a proactive approach to determining the value of your home and addressing any repairs or issues before listing it for sale.

If you wait until the buyer conducts their own home inspection, you may face delays in the closing process as repairs are completed or as repair costs are negotiated with the buyer. These factors may influence your asking price because buyers may request concessions to cover any repairs, so you’ll want to keep the number of factors that could cause the buyers to back out to a minimum. When it comes time to negotiate with potential buyers, getting a pre-listing home inspection will put you in a better position.


Planning to buy or sell a home in the Waterloo Region but have questions? Why not speak with an expert? Contact the award-winning Team Pinto here, or book a free Zoom consultation to discuss your unique Waterloo Region real estate needs.

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