Once you've listed your home for sale and are getting ready for your first open house, there are five things you need to stash away for safety.
Your home is going to be more open than ever as agents begin showing it to anyone with an interest in buying, so keeping valuables protected is essential. Follow these tips before that first open house.
- Put Away All Personal Information
Before your real estate agent schedules the first open house, take a walk around your home and look for any documents or papers that contain personal information. Make sure you do not have any credit card statements out, phone numbers, and even your college diploma should be taken down. These documents and papers should not be visible to the strangers that will be entering your home. The best solution is to keep these personal items in a locked drawer or cabinet with a key you take with you.
- Remove All Spare Keys
Many of us have those handy key holders by the door, so we can easily find a key when needed. When selling your home, these become possible threats to your security as someone can easily take them during an open house and return later to enter your home illegally. All spare keys should either be with you or locked in a secure box or cabinet to remain out of sight.
- Daily Life Items
Some of the items we use in our daily life may give prospective buyers the wrong idea about your home. If they see earplugs lying by the bedside, they may believe the neighborhood is noisy and hard to sleep in. When potential buyers see fans scattered throughout the house, they will think it becomes too warm, or space heaters will indicate it is hard to heat. These types of items allow prospective buyers to use their imagination as to why you have them, and the ideas they generate are usually not favorable to your house. Before that first open house, you need to tuck these items out of sight.
- Remove Any Political Endorsements
Remove all political endorsements when you are selling your home, even those tucked away on a bookshelf. Buyers have been known to turn away from a potential purchase just because of a simple campaign sign they saw in a yard.
During an open house or when you have a scheduled showing, you should never leave any type of medication in plain sight. Even though your medicine cabinet has a door, this does not make your medication safe. The nightstand next to a bed is also a place looked for by anyone wanting to gain access to your prescriptions. All medications should be locked up in a storage container and concealed from sight.
When you are selling your home, there is no way to avoid opening it up to strangers. It is an essential piece of the selling process you cannot remove. When you are ready to open your home to prospective buyers, make sure you have stashed valuable and important items and have found a way to secure them.