As a REALTOR® and a home owner listing my home, I know both sides of the story when it comes sales. Here are a few tips to help new "sellers" prepare for the crunch.
Plan ahead as you only get one shot at being "Just Listed!"
Do some research and attend open houses to get a feel or the comparable sales, or homes that are in the similar size and price range as your own. This will help keep you realistic when setting your own price, as well as how they are presented, staged and what the buyers are looking for.
Have an inspection done and know ahead of time what needs to be repaired, both big and small. This will save time and headaches in the future when that really great offer comes in, only to be lost due to negotiating over a faulty drain (for example.) A "move-in ready home is much more attractive than one requiring investment after purchase.
Have someone with a good eye for style and design help you stage your home and depersonalize to help prospective buyers see themselves in your home; the don't want to see your memories of you and your family. remove excess furniture and increase the footprint of the rooms; create an airy feel of space. Remember, you are selling the space, not your belongings ;)
Now would be a great time to consider the minor remodels, such as a bathroom retrofit, or fresh paint to spruce up the rooms. Consider new cupboard hardware to update a tired kitchen, or coordinating towels and shower curtains to pull together an older bathroom.
While it may seem like a lot of work to prepare, these suggestions are but a few that can potentially save money in the long run.
Don't be surprised if you fall in love with your home again after these touch-ups...
Happy staging and happy selling!