Preparing Your Home To Sell BEFORE Calling a Realtor®?

There are steps you can do to prepare your home to sell before calling a Realtor®. Selling your home is a process that can be complicated. Deciding whether to sell your home is often a difficult decision. Then, you must choose to sell it yourself or hire a Real Estate Agent. 

Bringing in a professional doesn’t absolve you from doing any work to get your home ready to market. You can rely on your Realtor® to handle the paperwork, marketing, negotiations, and getting the sale to the closing table. 

However, a savvy homeowner expects to play a hands-on role. Prepare yourself by taking these steps to prepare your home before the Realtor® arrives:

  1. Research Neighborhood Home Values

In real estate, the price of a property may fluctuate, but the lasting value is measured by the people who make it their home

The Realtor® will research the home values and help guide you. Nevertheless, knowing what homes like yours within the neighborhood are asking or have recently sold for will make you a more informed seller. With internet access to this information, it is easy to do the research.

2. Gather Your Paperwork

Real estate agent working in the office and piles of paperwork, model house on the foreground and mortgage loan documentation

You will need to collect any financial documents related to your home. Find out what you owe on your mortgage. An amortization calculator will help you create an easy-to-read chart of your financial status. Additionally, if any liens or disputes might affect the sale, compile the relevant paperwork for those issues. Another essential document to have on hand is your title insurance policy, which you would have received when you purchased the home. A title report can be completed before listing to uncover any issues you may not be aware of. 

3. Clean And Declutter

Young woman giving her clothes packed in box to charity.

Real estate agents can advise you on how to prepare your home to make the best impression on the buyers. Decluttering is the first step. Make your rooms, closets, and other storage areas feel spacious by removing the things you no longer want or use. A thorough cleaning is imperative to presenting your home at its best. Imagine the meticulous in-laws are coming to visit.

4. Be Selective of Home Improvements

Young couple in talking to real estate agent.  Looking at a model of their new house in real estate agency office.

Don’t go overboard with home improvements. You don’t have to do every home improvement project you’ve planned. Wait for your real estate agent’s advice about upgrades that will net you the best return on investment in the current market to prevent you from concentrating your efforts in the wrong place.

5. Create a List of Improvements You Have Made


Inventory the updates you have made to the home over the past several years. The specific amount spent isn’t necessary, but giving a good itemization of your efforts is helpful. Be specific. A new roof, siding, kitchen, or bath renovation can significantly alter the list price if comparable homes do not have the same improvements. 

6. Consult Your Schedule

Businessman in suit in his office showing home insurance policy and pointing with a pen where the policyholder must to sign. Insurance agent consulting real estate insurance detail to customer.

The Realtor® will need to know when they can schedule showings and open houses. Communicate any upcoming vacations, work travel, or out-of-town visitors that may affect scheduling showings. Another critical date to share with your Realtor® would be a planned moving date if you already know when that will be. 

Learning how to prepare your home to sell with a Realtor® is essential in the moving process. A Realtor® brings immense value and expertise to help you achieve your goal during an emotional or stressful time.

If you are considering buying or selling in the Palm Springs Region, let me help you make it as stress-free as possible. Contact me, Stephen Burchard, The Desert Bowtie Realtor®, taking the (k)nots out of real estate.