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An open house can make the difference between selling your house or not. But before you open your doors to potential homebuyers, you have to give your home a makeover. First impressions are everything, and your home has to be in tip-top condition if it is to attract buyers.

If you are looking to buy a home, make the most of open houses to ensure you get the best deal.

Here are some great pointers to help you get ready to host an open house or attend one.

Tips for Home Sellers before your Open House

1. Get Rid of Clutter Before Potential Buyers Come

A sure way to repel buyers is to have a house full of clutter. Get rid of toys, photos, magazines, and kitchen items to make your house look inviting. Empty closets, remove items on countertops, and take out unnecessary furniture. Buyers want to visualize how the home will look like when they live in it. Don’t be tempted to hide clutter, pack what you don’t need and store it.

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2. Make Your Home Feel and Smell Inviting

An inviting scent makes people want to linger. Bake cookies or a cake to give your house a homey scent and to provide snacks during the open house. Avoid perfumed sprays or candles because it may seem like you are masking odors. In addition, some homebuyers may be allergic.

Take out the garbage and neutralize any kitchen odors with baking soda, citrus, essential oils or pine. Place plants like lavender or eucalyptus indoors because they have amazing fragrances.

3. Do Not Neglect the Exterior of your Home

Neglecting your exterior can cost you a buyer. Vacuum or change your doormat and clean outdoor furniture. Also ensure the driveway and patio are sparkling clean.

Your yard and driveway are the first areas buyers see. Have a well-maintained lawn and paint your front door afresh for a lasting first impression. Clean and stage your backyard as an entertaining spot.

Essential Tips for Home Buyers Before Attending an Open House

1. Study the Neighborhood

Your neighborhood will determine whether or not you buy a house. Find out how close the local amenities are, the crime rate, and traffic speeds. Check the condition of neighboring homes, transit options, and privacy. 

2. Look at your Home’s Layout

Your needs will determine the layout that works best for you. If you have little children, bedrooms on one floor will be ideal. If your kids are grown, you might prefer bedrooms on different floors.

The house flow is equally important because it can help you know if the house meets your family’s needs. Check how spacious the rooms are, how they connect, and if space can be maximized.

3. Heed Warning Signs of Possible Problems

The basement and attic can harbor horrid smells – inspect them. Water stains on ceilings and basement baseboards can indicate drainage problems, flooding, or a leaking roof. Dampness on walls can signify mold.

If the home has strong smells such as tobacco and pet odors, decide whether you are comfortable with them because they might be difficult to eliminate. Follow your nose, it will lead you to strange smells.

Whether you are a home seller or a homebuyer, you need to thoroughly prepare for an open house. It is the best way to make the most of the day.