Cleaning your windows can be a real pane. Nevertheless, if you’re looking to sell your home, it’s important to sweat the small stuff in order to display your house in the best possible light and extract the maximum value from prospective home buyers. Read on for a full list of all the reasons why clean windows are crucial for sellers.
First Impressions Are Key
As the old saying goes, you never get a second chance to make a first impression, and that goes double in the internet age, when home buyers are doing more and more of their own research. If your home doesn’t look good from the street (or the photos online), some buyers are never going to give it a fair shake, and even for the ones that do, it’ll be fighting an uphill battle.
A psychological phenomenon called the “primacy effect” means that people place a disproportionately high value on the first piece of information they receive on a subject. For many, that first look will stick in their minds long after impressions of other interior spaces have faded. In order to make that principle work for you, take advantage of affordable ways to improve your home’s curb appeal – such as washing the windows.
Showcase Your Space
Portraying your home in the best possible light also extends to the interior, and having clean windows can help there as well. Abundant natural light creates an appealing atmosphere and makes your rooms seem much larger than the dimensions that are listed on the floor plan. Conversely, rooms with dirty windows, whose blinds or curtains are drawn, will feel small and dingy, making home buyers uncomfortable on a subconscious level. The better your buyers feel when they’re inside, the more likely they are to make a high-value offer on your house.
The benefits don’t stop there, either. Windows also frame views of your surroundings, from tasteful landscaping or a wooded backdrop to scenic views that extend for miles. If there is something outside that’s worth seeing, make sure that whatever it is, it looks as good as possible, and isn’t covered with dust and cobwebs.
Windows Aren’t Just Windows
Small details like clean windows matter for another reason: They demonstrate your pride of homeownership, and serve as evidence as to whether or not the rest of the home is well maintained. Cleaning windows isn’t a difficult task, and if an owner doesn’t bother with that sort of thing, or other small jobs like vacuuming or yard maintenance, how much confidence can the buyer have that the owner will have been diligent in handling larger issues, like a leaky roof, invading insects, or water in the basement? If you want to sell your home, you need to be able to think like a buyer and understand the way that home buyers perceive the things that you don’t notice in your day-to-day life.
You Need to Live in Your Home, Too!
Until the listing sells, it’s still your home, and you’re likely going to be living there while it’s on the market. A large financial transaction like selling a home is stressful enough on its own, so why not try to remove as much tension as possible from other areas of your life? If you stay on top of easy tasks like cleaning the windows, having tidy living spaces with natural light and views will enrich your life and improve your day in a thousand tiny ways that you may not even consciously notice.
For more information on simple things you can do to maximize your home’s sale price and minimize its time on the market, check out our blog posts on Seven Things to Do Before Listing Your Home and ways to Add Value to Your Home With Spring Cleaning, and contact a Howard Hanna agent from your neighborhood office for an expert assessment.