8 Things You Should Never Do When Selling Your Home


Most of us understand that details count when selling your home. But, from patching holes in the walls to making the kitchen so clean you can eat off the floor, it can get time-consuming and emotionally challenging. With such a complex and sensitive transaction on your hands, it’s easy to let things slip through the cracks and make mistakes. But with a little know-how, you can avoid these pitfalls altogether.

Read on to find out how you can persuade a buyer to fall in love with your home and get the best possible price – all without losing your mind in the process.

8 Common Mistakes When Selling Your Home

1. “I cleaned the surfaces.”

You have one shot at impressing a potential buyer. And if you’re hoping for top dollar, you better be prepared to impress the heck out of them. When you’re cleaning, don’t forget about the details like bathroom drawers, closets and even the inside of the stove, oven and refrigerator. Whether you like it or not, when buyers peek into your cabinet and see food stuck to your toaster oven, they’re not going to be impressed. Minor details matter; remember to clean up every morning.

2. “My home smells fine.”

We hate to break it to you, but your home probably has a certain odor to it. Sure, you’re used to living with your dogs, diapers and cooking, but these smells will be distracting to buyers. The best way to nix the stench is to clean your home from top to bottom. This includes replacing shower curtains and shampooing carpet (especially if you have pets). Make sure leftover foods are kept in sealed containers and wipe up any spills immediately. Keeping a home smelling fresh while living in it can be tough, but it needs to be done.

3. “I do not do windows.”

Clean windows allow for more light in a home and give rooms that special sparkle. Plus, a bright, alive atmosphere is encouraged in Feng Shui, bringing good energy. So, go grab some old newspapers and start washing!

4. “I am too sentimental.”

It’s understandable to want to hang on to certain things. Whether they have sentimental value or you just can’t let go (because you think you may need it someday). But have you ever really heard a buyer walk into a home that’s for sale and say, “Gee, if only they had more stuff in here!” The more you can declutter, box up and put in storage ahead of time, the more likely a potential buyer will want to move in. Besides, if you start the packing process ahead of time, moving to your new home will be a much easier process.

5. “I can hang at home to answer questions.”

When a seller stays at the house during a showing, it can create an awkward vibe for most buyers. Let your beautiful (and clean) house sell itself; get out of the way. And take Fido with you, too.

6. “If I don’t point it out, they won’t notice.”

They. Will. The truth always comes out. There’s no way a new buyer (or the inspector) isn’t going to notice that mysterious leak the first time they run a bath or the loose hand rail on the steps. Fix them or disclose them and be honest about it. Or you could find yourself in court faster than you can say, “I really should have called a plumber to fix that leak.”

7. “I need to price my home high.”

Even if you paid mega bucks for the house years ago, that doesn’t mean it’s still worth that price. Your house is only worth what the market is willing to pay. Pricing your home unrealistically high will only not only discourage potential buyers from even making an offer in the first place but your property could end up sitting stagnate for months.

8. “I’m going to DIY my own sale.”

Sure, you’ve probably heard of a friend of a friend who sold by owner and everything was just dandy. But if you’re serious about selling fast and for the most money, call on the professionals. As a seller (and buyer) you want your interests protected by a licensed real estate agent who will act as your advocate. They are knowledgeable about the real estate laws in the area and someone you can trust to guide you through the process. Not hiring a good real estate agent can end up costing thousands in mistakes.

The Bottom Line

When selling your home, it should always be presented in immaculate condition (which is not exactly reality of our everyday life). Potential buyers don’t want to walk in a home and see how you live with your pets and clutter. They want to envision themselves in a perfect space they can call their own.

If you can avoid these costly mistakes listed above, it will go a long way in helping you put your best foot forward and achieve that fast, lucrative sale every home seller dreams of.