In the fall market, home selling is right up there with pumpkin carving, hay rides and trick-or-treating. The change of season ushers in a number of well-intentioned buyers (and fewer Looky-Lous) seeking the services of a real estate professional. Sellers, Halloween is your holiday!
With the most terrifying time of year fast approaching, the last thing you want to do is spook buyers with a home that looks like the House on Haunted Hill or something out of a ghost town. Before putting your home on the market, rid your digs of these horrifying features.
Neglected yard. Ever see someone mowing the lawn of a haunted house? Didn’t think so. Overgrown greenery (or brown-ery) is a sure sign of an abandoned abode. Maintain your landscaping and clear your yard of leaves before a showing.
Smashed windows. Unlike haunted houses, you probably don’t have razor-like shards of glass protruding from the windows of your home. But are they drafty? Use weatherstripping or caulk to seal cracks, or consider replacing them altogether.
Foul odors. Your house (hopefully!) isn’t home to anything decomposing, but you may be unaware of the distinct smells emanating from your garbage can. Remove trash and eliminate musty, stale air by opening the windows.
Peeling paint. Dated wallpaper and worn-out paint are staples in haunted houses. If your wall treatment is chipped, cracked or peeling, it’s time for an update. Scrub your walls, patch any holes and roll on a fresh coat of paint in a ghostly neutral shade.
Creaky floors. Ghouls creep through haunted homes, making the floors creak and sending panicked visitors running out the door. Ensure the walkthrough is painless by repairing unwelcome sounds with the help of a licensed handyman.
Cobwebs. Nothing screams haunted more than dust, grime and filth. Creepy-crawlers seem to love dirt, too, and pests are a serious turn-off for anyone, buyer or not. If you suspect a problem, call up the Orkin man to have it rectified immediately.
Junk piles. Is it just me, or are the spirits possessing haunted homes hoarders, too? Add a sense of spaciousness to your home by de-cluttering every nook and cranny, minimizing collections on shelves, and keeping counter and tabletops clear.
Gloomy rooms. Haunted houses are cloaked in darkness because, well, no one paid the electric bill. Avoid triggering childhood fears of the Boogeyman by lighting up dark walkways, dim rooms and shadowy corners.
“But Suz, what if my home really is possessed? Will it sell?”