Things to Do before a Real Estate Agent Shows Your Home

One of the biggest mistakes that inexperienced home sellers do is not put any time and effort into preparing their home for sale. When a real estate agent sets up a showing of your home to prospective buyers, your home needs to be in pristine shape. Sometimes even a worn out “Welcome” mat gives the wrong impression before buyers even step foot into your home. An unmaintained yard and damaged front porch can leave the impression that the inside will be just as bad.

You don’t want flaws or imperfections to reduce the chances of your home selling quickly on the traditional real estate market, so you’ll need to put in some extra time and sweat equity to make your home showroom perfect for showings and open houses. However, if you sell your home to TradeMark Investments, you won’t have to lift a finger. We sell homes in AS-IS condition for a reasonable cash offer.

Many sellers are unaware of the roadblock that a messy or damaged home sets up when they try to sell it on the traditional real estate market. On average, it takes at least six home showings before a seller receives an offer. If you haven’t received an offer after six showings, then you need to reexamine the asking price and condition of your home. Most of the time it comes down to those two things: price and condition. A home that is not updated can still sell, but at a shockingly lower price than the seller anticipated. It must be low enough to cover potential renovation fees. The buyer’s agent will aggressively pursue a lower price if the home needs any repairs.

Home is uninsurable

Many sellers are unaware of this, but if your home needs updates such as electricity, plumbing, HVAC, and other basics, it can be quite possible that your home is uninsurable. In some states, insurance companies refuse to insure a house that doesn’t meet basic standards. This can really cut down your pool of potential buyers to just people who can pay in cash and renovate.

Lenders won’t lend

Another consideration to ponder is that the Federal Housing Agency (FHA) is very picky about home condition standards before issuing a mortgage. Other lenders can also have requirements on home condition before they agree to a loan. Sometimes they won’t lend to a buyer interested in a dilapidated or outdated home.

However, selling your home to TradeMark Investments is easy and doesn’t require loans of any kind. Give us a call at (304) 220-0999 to learn more about our speedy cash offers for homes in any condition.

Walk in their shoes

If you’re planning to sell your home, it helps to think like a buyer. Do a walkthrough of your home and looks for flaws that a potential buyer will notice. Make notes of problems you notice. Those are items you will need to repair in the future. This is a good way to itemize repair costs pre-sale, so you’ll know what you’re getting into financially.

It doesn’t cost anything to declutter, hide family photos, clean closets, and remove large pieces of furniture. But when you notice stains on the walls and ceilings from water damage or cracks in the foundation, you’re looking at a potential money pit.

General tips

Make sure your house is clean. Dust everything including the fan blades. Polish appliances and faucets and wash the windows and sills. If you don’t have time to do this, you could hire a cleaning service to do a thorough cleaning before your agent starts scheduling showings.

Something smells…

Don’t cook fish or bacon the day before a showing. The smell lingers and surprisingly some people don’t like bacon. Fish odor turns off all buyers. Change the garbage cans in the kitchen and throughout the house before a showing. You only want pleasant aromas in the house. Some people are highly allergic to air freshener aerosol sprays. You can buy natural ones from Whole Foods or you can simply make your own air freshener with essential oils. Do a search on Pinterest for homemade air freshener recipes and you’ll find hundreds.


One of the biggest turn-offs at a house showing is cluttered rooms and closets. If a potential buyer sees personal items spilling out of a closet when they open it or simply sees excess items strewn about a room, they will assume that there is not enough storage space in the home. People love to have plenty of storage space.

Hide the shoe piles from the entrance and clear off the stack of mail on the kitchen counter top. Basically, make sure to do away with anything that detracts from the beauty of your home.

Paint in neutral colors

Bold colors can turn off many potential buyers. So, stick to neutral “blah” colors like white, tan, and light grey. The neutrality allows buyers to focus on the space itself and not the wall color. Remember, make sure you remove anything that distracts from the space including bold or odd colors.

Simplicity is best

It’s a good idea to keep your décor simple. This allows buyers to imagine themselves living in your home. You’ll want to get rid of any art or decorations that others may have a different tastes in. Your collection of ceramic clowns may not appeal to a potential buyer. Remember, you want the buyer to daydream that this could be their home. You want them to imagine their items in the rooms. They can’t do that if there’s a collection of art pieces or a zebra-print accent chair distracting them. You can always slipcover loud pieces of furniture, and you can keep classic art on the walls without any problem.


If it’s extremely hot outside, then turn the thermostat down a bit below your own comfort level. And if it’s extremely cold outside, turn the thermostat up a slight bit above your own comfort level. You’ll want them to feel the temperatures counteract when they open the front door. A refreshing chilled breeze is a great welcome on a hot summer afternoon when buyers step across the threshold of your home.


If it’s extremely hot outside, then turn the thermostat down a bit below your own comfort level. And if it’s extremely cold outside, turn the thermostat up a slight bit above your own comfort level. You’ll want them to feel the temperatures counteract when they open the front door. A refreshing chilled breeze is a great welcome on a hot summer afternoon when buyers step across the threshold of your home.

Remove personal items

Clear the walls, shelves, mantlepiece, and tables of any family photos. Take the kids’ art projects off of the refrigerator. Of course, remove tampon boxes and other highly personal items from the bathrooms, medicine cabinets, and vanity cabinets.

Lighten up!

Open windows and blinds to allow plenty of natural light to pour through. Add lamps to lighten up a dim room. Make sure each room has a bright and cheery hue. This makes the room look larger and more inviting.

Renovations that get you nowhere

Sometimes sellers are extremely disappointed in the return on investment for all the repairs they paid for pre-sale. A lot of people watch the HGTV shows and think they’ll automatically make thousands more off their home sale because they’ve invested in pricey renovations. Unfortunately, many are sorely disappointed and even lose money in the end.


One of the worst things about showing your home is the inconvenience. You’ll be expected to keep your home in pristine “showroom” shape while the real estate agent is lining up showings. You could be doing this for months. Not only that, but you and your family will have to leave the house at a moment’s notice if a potential buyer wants to schedule a last-minute showing.

An Alternative to Showings

If reading about things to do before a showing is exhausting or even scary, consider an alternative to traditional real estate sales. If you sell your home to an investor such as TradeMark Investments, you won’t have to lift a finger to prepare your home for showings. You can simply move out without any fuss about decluttering, cleaning, and repairing your home.

Avoid the trouble, inconvenience, and expense of preparing your home for sale and showings. If you sell your home to TradeMark Investments, the process is simple and requires no lawyers, realtors, home inspectors, home stagers, landscapers, contractors, or even bankers. You simply contact us either by phone at (304) 220-0999 or fill out our brief online form giving us a few details about your home. Within a day, you will hear from us. We offer no obligation cash offers for homes in the Charleston, WV area.

We service the following areas in West Virginia:

  • Charleston
  • Cross Lanes
  • Hurricane
  • Lubeck
  • Nitro
  • Parkersburg
  • Ripley
  • South Charleston
  • St. Albans
  • Teays Valley
  • Washington

Please call TradeMark Investments today at (304) 220-0999 to sell your home quickly and for a reasonable cash offer.