Things Sellers Should do Before Leaving their Home


If you are in the final stretch of selling your house, and the contract has been signed, repairs have been done, and you're getting ready to go, here are a few important reminders.


** Clean means CLEAN!

Technically, you don't have to be able to lick the floors, but buyers do NOT want to see hair in bathroom drawers, bathtub stains, crumbs in kitchen drawers, and unswept floors. Honestly, it's easier to simply hire a cleaning service to come by after you move out. (You'll thank me later.)

** Convey or Not Convey. That is the question.
Look, you may LOVE that light fixture, or maybe you just installed a door knocker for show. However, if something in your house can't be removed as easily as a picture hanging on a wall, chances are, it's a fixture and does NOT convey. Ask your agent if you're unsure of what does and doesn't go.

** What, a Hole in the wall!
This is a tricky one. Holes in the walls from pictures were, technically, there when the buyer made the offer, so they CAN be there when walk through happens--except when otherwise written into the contract. But if you decide to patch and paint, make sure you get an exact paint match and do a nice job, or you may be stuck completely painting rooms after closing.


** Can't you leave some things behind? 

A few things are traditionally behind: leftover paint, tile and flooring, and items that convey. Beyond that, review conveyance items on the contract BEFORE the movers come, so you don't pack something away that you'll need to send back to the buyers. When in doubt, ask your Realtor.


** Review Your Repairs 

A few days prior to closing, take the time with your Realtor to inspect the repairs made, per the home inspection repair list from the contract. Make sure all the receipts have been sent to the buyer's agent, and that they address ALL the fixes.

In the final days of packing and moving, it's easy to be tired and cranky. But it pays to be nice. Your buyers are, most likely, going to get some of your mail and packages sent by accident. So leave a forwarding address and a few instructions on how to operate your home's equipment. Remember, your buyers will be voicing their opinions about you to neighbors long after you're gone.

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Tammy Steffens

Tammy Steffens

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