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If you’re planning to move, and especially if you have time constraints, you’re probably eager to list your house and find a buyer as quickly as possible. But the last thing you want to do is rush the process and make costly mistakes along the way. Instead, take a step back and put a plan in places before listing your home so that you can attract a buyer and get the best possible price.

Find the Right Real Estate Agent
Don’t just go with an agent whose name you saw on an advertisement. Do some research and find someone who has experience selling homes comparable to yours in the same geographic area in a relatively short amount of time at or above asking price. You can ask friends and family members for recommendations, but do your research before making a final decision to ensure you pick the agent best suited for your situation.

Once you’ve found an agent, discuss when the house will be available for showings and how much notice you’ll need. Put together a list of places your family can go, as well as things you can do, while the house is being shown. If you have pets, make arrangements to bring them somewhere so that they can be looked after during the showing.

Improve Your Home’s Curb Appeal
Prospective buyers make snap judgments within seconds of seeing a house. If the outside doesn’t look neat and attractive, some people won’t even bother getting out of the car. Therefore, it’s important to mow the lawn, weed the garden, plant some flowers, prune the trees, get rid of any damaged lawn furniture or toys, clean the siding, paint the front door and make any other necessary changes so that people who come to look at your home will have a positive first impression.

Clean Up the Inside
Once you entice potential buyers to come into your house, you need to make sure they like what they see. A cluttered and dirty space are instant turnoffs, so sell, donate, store or throw away any items you don’t need—or that take up too much space. Once the space has been decluttered, clean the house from top to bottom. If necessary, hire professionals to come in and make the space shine. The expense will be worth it if it helps you sell your house quickly. You’ll also want to make repairs throughout the home. Little things, such as scuff marks and broken handles, don’t cost much to fix, but they can cause buyers to think that there must be other problems with the house that are less obvious.

The home should be a blank canvas so that prospective buyers can envision themselves living in the space. Remove photos and other personal items and cover any bold paint colors with neutral ones. Stage the house in a way that highlights its best features. Make sure it’s clean, decluttered, and well-lit. Professional stagers can help you achieve the desired goal.

Get Ready for a Flurry of Activity
After you list your home, you’ll likely have many potential buyers come by in the first few weeks. Take some steps to prepare for the flurry of activity before putting your home on the market so that you can impress prospective buyers, which will hopefully pave the way to a quick sale.