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​​David Simon, Realtor
Smith Mountain Lake

Smith Mountain Lake Real Estate: Waterfront and Water Access Homes and Lots For Sale

Smith Mountain Lake Homes For Sale

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Disassociate yourself from your home  Step back and ask yourself, what would my first impression be if I were shopping for a home, pulled in the driveway, and toured this house? 

Depersonalize You want buyers to imagine their own photos on the walls.  Pack up personal photographs and family heirlooms.  You want buyers to think, "I can see myself living here."

Remove clutter  This is actually a head start on packing things up and getting rid of everything that you don’t plan to take to your new place.

  • Clean everything off of kitchen counters. Store small appliances.
  • Reduce items in the refrigerator.
  • Reduce the number of books on bookcases.
  • Pack up some of your knickknacks.
  • Rearrange and neaten up closets.  Remove excess clothing items.
  • Remove excess furniture.  Homes typically show best with furniture, BUT not too much furniture. People often move because they want more room, so make sure the house feels as spacious as possible. Remove and store bulky pieces of furniture as well as any pieces that block or hamper walkways. Remove extra leaves from your dining room table to make the room appear larger. Leave just enough furniture in each room to showcase the room's purpose.
  • Consider fixtures.  It is best to leave mirrors, light fixtures, window treatments, etc. in place for sale with the home.  However, if any particular item is a family heirloom that you have no intention of selling, it is best to remove these items prior to listing the home.  If it is in the home during a showing, once you tell the buyer they can’t have it, it will interfere with your negotiation.

Clean and polish  A buyer will associate the cleanliness of the home with the maintenance and condition of the home. Focus on the rooms that potential buyers are most interested in - living room, dining room, kitchen and bathroom. Look at each room as a potential buyer might and see what catches the eye first. Make that the starting point for the cleaning process. Then, follow the top-to-bottom, left-to-right rule for cleaning each room. Don't forget to wash windows, vacuum carpets and drapes, and dust thoroughly. Kitchens and bathrooms must be spotless. 

Household smells  The only thing as important as decluttering is having an immaculate house. A house that smells odd to a prospective homeowner, whether because of a cat’s litter box, dogs, or exotic food, can easily be a deal breaker. Don’t try to mask anything with air fresheners, candles or potpourri.  Just let in fresh air a few minutes before a showing. 
Hiring a professional cleaning company to scrub walls, floors, carpets, and windows can make an amazing difference, both in appearance and in removing odors. If the smell persists after the cleaning crew has finished, consider replacing any carpets used by animals.

​Let in the light  You want to let as much light in as possible. Remove unneeded shades and blinds. If there’s drapery, pull it open to maximize your window size. You want people to come in and say, " I could live here. It’s airy and bright!"

Keep it neutral Avoid drastic color changes from one room to the next in the main areas of the home. Picking a neutral color makes the home feel bigger, flow better, and feel more open. Neutrals don't have to be boring beige. Shades of gray, blue, and green can be neutral too. For mass appeal, stick to neutral walls and white or wood-tone moldings. 

Make necessary repairs

  • If you had a pre-sales home inspection, review the inspection and make repairs to systems and structural items now.  For example, if the inspector identified a small leak in an air duct, fix it now so that it is not an issue when the buyer completes his home inspection.
  • Patch holes in walls. Be careful touching up paint.  Sizable repairs in walls may require the entire wall to be painted because touch-ups become obvious.
  • Fix leaky faucets.
  • Fix doors that don't close properly and kitchen drawers that jam. Buyers open drawers and doors, and when they don't function properly they will speculate about what else doesn't work. 
  • Consider painting your walls neutral colors, especially if you have bright colors that may not appeal to all buyers.  
  • Replace burned-out light bulbs.
  • If you've considered replacing an item such as a bedspread for your new home, buy it now to improve the appearance of the room.
  • Replace cracked floor and counter tiles.
  • Recaulk tubs and sinks.

Work on curb (and lakefront) appeal  If a prospective buyer won't get out of their agent's car because they don’t like the exterior of your home, you never get them inside.

  • The front door is the first thing people see.  A new coat of paint and planters with fresh flowers can do wonders for buyers' first impression of your home.
  • Maintain the lawn. Fertilize and keep the weeds down. Keep the lawn neatly mowed.
  • Keep the sidewalks cleared. If the walkway is in poor condition, consider making repairs.
  • Pressure-washing outdoor decks and siding can also do wonders for a home’s first impression.
  • Paint any faded trim.
  • Trim your bushes. Plant flowers and scrubs.  Remove any that are in poor condition. 
  • If your property is a waterfront home, are there any ways to enhance the view of the lake? You must be careful to not illegally remove trees inside of the Smith Mountain Lake project boundary.  However a fresh pruning of branches that restrict lake views can pay huge dividends in the eyes of potential buyers.

Preparing your Smith Mountain Lake Home for Sale

First impressions are everything when selling your home. It's important to make sure that it is presented in a way that will make buyers see it at its very best. If you'd like, we are happy to help you develop a plan of how to best prepare your house for maximum salability. Below are some items to consider to help buyers put your home at the top of their want list.