Steps For Preparing Your North Carolina Home For Sale

Selling your house and moving out can be an emotional process. Now’s the time to take the necessary steps to prepare yourself for the move and to prepare your house. Notice, we said house and not home. What was your home is now a house that you are going to sell! When you work with an experienced North Carolina Realtor, who prices your house right and shows you the steps for preparing your house for sale, you can sell your home in a breeze. It’s time to focus your emotions on your next home purchase. We’ve got you covered when it comes to selling in the High Country of North Carolina.

#1 – Set a Competitive Listing Price

The first step in the home selling process is to set a competitive listing prices for your home. You should select a fair, yet profitable price by researching the local housing market through sites like or completing a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA). Look for comparable properties sold in your area of the High Country of North Carolina. Pay attention to square footage, features and location. How do these features compare to your home? Your neighbors may have sold their home for $400k, but you like your kitchen better. If your home is considerably smaller, you’ll most likely need to list your house for less. A reputable Realtor will assist you with finding comps and determining the right listing price for your house. By the way, what you ‘need’ or ‘want’ to get for your house are not indicators of its true market value.

If you’re struggling to find information to compare your asking listing price to, we can help. 828 Real Estate can provide you with a custom, data-backed CMA of the area you are selling in that helps you pick a price that attracts potential buyers.

#2 – Work With a North Carolina Real Estate Agent

It is imperative that you hire a professional real estate agent to list your home. Statistics show that selling your home with a professional Realtor will reap you a higher profit, covering commission as well as putting more money in your pocket. Don’t just go with a name you saw on a bench or your cousin’s daughter’s dentist office. Ask people who have had great success in selling their homes for Realtor recommendations. When interviewing a listing agent, find out about their experience in your neighborhood, connections to potential buyers and social media expertise. Explore their reputation by reading online reviews. Your Realtor should be able to give you a thoroughly laid out plan for how they are going to market and sell your home.

#3 – Spruce Up Your Curb Appeal

There are dozens of outdoor improvements you can make to up the curb appeal of your home. Pick your top 5 and go with those! Door needs paint? Porch needs sprucing up and a little décor or greenery? New house numbers and a new light fixture can make a big difference. If you haven’t already, pressure wash dirty siding, patios and walkways. Trim shrubs, put out planters, or add pleasing landscaping to attract buyers. Sometimes buyers will drive up to a home and decide they don’t even want to go in if things are too messy! Do some easy and inexpensive sprucing up before listing your home to ensure yours will be the one they want to check out.

Now is the time to take care of those projects that you’ve been putting off for a rainy day – for 20 years. Fix anything and everything that needs to be fixed like locks, doorknobs, doorbells, ripped screens, broken windowpanes, other hardware, leaky faucets, running toilets, cracks in the walls, broken appliances, squeaky doors, etc. These should be taken care of before listing so buyers are not left with the impression that you haven’t maintained the home well.

#4 – Declutter, Clean, & Depersonalize

Once you have a potential buyer in your home, don’t let bad smells and dirty floors make a bad impression. Before listing your home, give it a deep clean. Bathrooms and kitchens need added attention and should sparkle! You will need to clean toilets, wipe down surfaces, mop floors, and wash rugs, curtains, and window blinds. You may consider hiring a professional for the first deep clean.

The weeks before listing are the time for clearing out clutter and minimizing stuff. Anything you can live without, pack up and get out of the house! Things like small kitchen appliances, off-season clothing, old and worn furnishings, kitschy décor and pretty much everything you have stuffed in the back of the closets! Look for a short-term storage space or rent a storage unit. The goal is to get as much as possible out of your home before showings start.

In addition, de-personalize your space leaving only the minimum furniture and décor necessary to show potential buyers the purpose of each room. Put away most framed photos, trophies, awards, magazines, toys, equipment, bulletin boards and stuff all over the fridge. Leave a few nice framed prints or paintings and greenery or plants to make the home appear inviting and just a little lived in.
Complete Projects and Keep a Handyman on Speed Dial

When your home is in ship-shade, you’ll need to take photos and videos of your clean space for the listing. Your Realtor can help you with staging your home or you can hire a professional. Prepare to maintain that same level of cleanliness for upcoming showings. To keep it simple, get in the habit of doing small things to keep your home clean for showings. Stock up on light bulbs. When showing your house to potential buyers, all light fixtures and lamps will need to be working and turned on. Always clean dishes right after you use them, make beds in the morning, vacuum and dust regularly and keep clutter to a minimum. Get everyone in the house involved with a list of chores for prepping the home before each showing to avoid running around like crazy when a buyer schedules a showing with short notice

#5 – Set Up Home Inspections

If your home is on a septic system, consider having the system pumped prior to listing if it has not been pumped in the last 2-3 years. Another sure sign that you have taken care of the home.
Not even sure what needs repair? Considering hiring a Home Inspector to do a Pre-inspection of your home. Their report will show you exactly what will come up in a buyer’s home inspection and what they will want you to fix. Better to take care of those items now and avoid future hassles. Your having a pre-inspection is a great selling point to interested buyers!

#6 – Have Your Realtor Handle the Listing Paperwork

Prior to listing your home for sale, you need to get all of your ducks in a row in regard to paperwork and disclosures. Have a copy of your deed on hand as well as copies of any easements, permits, water rights, road maintenance, deed restrictions and other recorded agreements. Do you share your property’s well? Have a copy of the recorded agreement. Any potential buyer will need this information to obtain a loan and/or for their own peace of mind. Gather all appliance, HVAC and other manuals and warranties in one place for the next owner.

#7 – Prepare for Home Showings

A stressful part of selling your property can be needing to leave on the fly when you get a showing request. While you want to do what you can to facilitate buyers looking at the house, your Realtor can ask for notice before showings. Two hours’ notice is a good rule of thumb and should give you enough time to get the house in shape without deterring any buyers.

Have a home showing prep list on hand to run through before each showing. Make the space appealing by opening blinds, turning on lights, or maybe even lighting a fire in the fireplace. Be sure to hide clutter. Make your bed and fluff rumbled pillows. Many sellers keep a bag by the door with spare keys and their electronics to grab on your way out before showings begin.

You’ll also need to have a plan for your pets. If you are going to be home, you may simply take them along with you when you leave. If you get a showing request while you’re at work, have a plan for a neighbor or pet-sitter to come get your pets for the duration of the showing. Having a plan in place ahead of time will reduce a lot of stress in worrying about your pets. Don’t forget to de-clutter pet stuff along with your own. Have a place to quickly stow toys, bowls, and beds when buyers are coming over.

#8 – Listen to Feedback

Now that you are working with an excellent Realtor, have priced the home right, made repairs, cleaned, staged and de-cluttered your home and taken the above steps to ensure a successful selling process, it’s a matter of time before the right buyer comes through your door. Be conscientious about taking in all feedback you receive, even if you don’t like it. Plan actionable steps you can take to improve. The more you respond to feedback, the better you’ll be set to sell.

Work With 828 Real Estate in Boone, NC

Now that you’ve taken all the steps to prepare for selling your house, you’ve done the hard work! Your Realtor can taken the reigns and make your house stand out on social media with pictures, videos and an abundance of excellent information! At 828 Real Estate, we are marketing to our neighbors, target audiences and the real estate community in High Country North Carolina. When you sell your property with us you can see your listing syndicated online, in flyers, emails and newsletters. The news is out and you will soon be on your way to your new home!

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About the Author

A Realtor® in Boone and the High Country since 2003, I am passionate about offering a superior level of service, innovative marketing and a highly personalized, boutique-style experience to my clientele. I started my real estate career as an Investor and was Broker-In-Charge of my own firm upon moving to Boone. Since that time, I have excelled with other real estate firms and built a strong network of client friends. Together with my network of professionals such as mortgage, insurance, inspection companies, etc. and my own Professional Home Staging business, (, we will polish your home buying/selling experience with your goals as a priority. I’ve lived all over the United States from the NE to the SE and California before landing in Boone, NC. You’ve seen the signs, “The mountains are calling and I must go?” Well, that was me 15 years ago! I love bluegrass music and, it seems, many of the great pickers were born in NC with a guitar in their hands! I sing, play a little mandolin and keyboards and you can be found at outdoor festivals and concerts when I’m not showing property! I also participate in many of our area’s outdoor activities, from hiking and biking to kayaking- the New river is my summer home! Caring for the needs of High Country residents is also very important to me and through Cornerstone Summit Church’s ‘Trenches’ team, I serve in many ways from preparing and serving meals at the Hospitality House to School Events to Habitat for Humanity Home Builds. In addition, I am honored to serve our community as a Certified Guardian ad Litem, advocating for children in the courtroom.

The High Country of North Carolina is unique, with large second home and student populations driving much of the market. It’s important that you work with a Realtor® like myself who is experienced and educated in the area, guaranteeing our success together. The acronyms behind my Broker title are not just letters - they stand for something;

GRI - Graduate of the Realtor Institute. Brokers holding this designation have completed 12, 3 day courses over a period of 2 years or more for in-depth training.

ABR - Accredited Buyer's Agent. An (ABR®) designation means your Realtor® has made extra efforts to raise the bar, with additional courses and proven experience in serving BUYERS.

SFR - Short Sales and Foreclosure Resource Certification. Short sales and foreclosures are not for the faint of heart and the courses I've taken arm me with the knowledge to assist clients in this area.

My business approach is founded on building lasting relationships based upon commitment and trust and the majority of my business comes in the way of referrals from past clients. Make me Your Realtor of Choice and work with a person you can trust to take your needs to heart and to find the perfect property for YOU in the HIGH COUNTRY!