Occasionally clients ask me about little extra tips and tricks to improve the appeal of their home while it’s on the market. This is especially true when it comes to open houses or showings. Below I answer a common question about home odors.
Q: Is it a good idea to add pleasant odors (cookies baking, cinnamon, fresh flowers) to a staged home for showings?
A: Not necessarily. Odors do matter, but assuming you know what "a nice smell" is to you buyers could be trouble.
If anything, your house should smell freshly cleaned, but not "chemical." Your best bet is to focus on eliminating foul or dominant odors.
If the house smells stuffy or "closed up" (you know, that "back of the closet with coats from 1974 smell"), concentrate on circulating fresh air first and foremost. Replacing air filters in forced heat/air systems is a good place to start.
The problem with adding odors such as baking cookies or fresh coffee is one of preference. How do you know what sort of associations buyers will have with the smells you think are attractive? A bright, Spring smell might come across as cloying to your visitors. (Floral scents may even set off allergies!)
Also consider this: Are you adding a "good smell" in an effort to cover up a bad smell? We all know how well that works out. The mix is pretty awful.
Finally, many buyers are aware of the "sweet smell" tactic associated with open houses. While your intentions may be good, some savvy prospects may be thinking, "I wonder what that smell is supposed to distract us from?"
Need a sniff test before hand? Ask a few neighbors or friends to give them your opinion when they walk in the door fresh, prior to the main open house or showing.
I love to work with clients to prepare their home for a top-dollar sale. Need more ideas for staging or improving the curb appeal of your home? Let’s chat! Get in touch today: