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A Resource For Home Buyers

We want to be a one-stop home buying resource for you, and one way we’re doing this, is by providing helpful tips and information about the mortgage industry, buying and selling your home – and many other useful topics that you’ll likely encounter on your path to home ownership. We’re confident that you’ll learn something new every time you visit this page.

4 items to check off your pre-home sale to-do list

4 items to check off your pre-home sale to-do list

The home sale process can be filled with mixed emotions. You might be excited to move into a house that suits your life better, sad to say goodbye to your first home or stressed at the many steps in the process.

Before you determine how to sell your house, make sure you're ready. These four steps can be a good place to start:

1. Clean up

If there's only one thing you do before listing your home or welcoming prospective buyers, choose cleaning. No one wants to buy a messy house, and even though a viewer might logically know that, if they buy the house, it'll be pretty empty, it's hard to shake that first impression of a dirty house.

Cleaning up before you sell your house is different than the quick tidying you might do regularly. For this purpose, you'll want to organize and clean everything from the mud room to all the nooks and crannies in your bathroom. Your closet should be tidy, there should be no toys lying around your living room, and there should be no shoes or umbrellas cluttering up the entryway.

2. Neutralize

Homebuyers want to look at a blank slate that they can craft to make their own, pointed out. If you painted your living room your favorite burgundy color or you invested in aquamarine colored carpet for your child's room, consider replacing these with more neutral options.

"You're pretty safe with a neutral color because it's rare that someone hates it, but the other benefit is that a light color allows [buyers] to envision what the walls would look like with the color of their choice," Kipton Cronkite, a real estate agent with Douglas Elliman in New York, told

Color isn't the only thing you should be neutralizing; any odors your home may have can also turn off buyers. If your kitchen smells strongly of fish, or your furniture like wet dog, try your best to rid the space of unpleasant smells.

3. De-personalize

Over the years you've made the house your own by filling it with pictures of your family, meaningful artwork and other items that make you feel at home. As beautiful as you may have made your abode, there's a slim chance that prospective buyers will identify with your decor the way you do. To help viewers picture themselves making the house their own, take down these elements. Some common examples of personal items to remove or hide from sight include:

  • Family photos.
  • Religious decorations.
  • Daring artwork.
  • Anything with your name.

Even having medications in sight can make it hard for a buyer to picture him or herself in the home, HGTV noted. Walk through your house and seek out anything that could be considered more personal than neutral, and remove those items.

4. Make repairs

Most homes have at least a couple areas that could use a little TLC. If you've had a repair on your to-do list but have yet to get around to it, finally taking care of it could help your home sale along. Obvious flaws like a crack in a window or a leaky pipe can turn a buyer off, but fixing or updating them can draw someone in.

When you're ready to buy your next home, reach out to The Federal Savings Bank. Our mortgage experts will work with you to find the right home loan.