Recently I’ve been showing a few out-of-town buyers homes in the Coral Gables and Coconut Grove areas and I’ve decided to give prospective sellers a gift tied with a bow to avoid making clients feel tied up in knots.

Selling a home can be a stressful process, but there are certain things you should avoid doing to make the process go as smoothly as possible, particularly since buyers are on edge as well. Deciding whether they purchase your home or not, is a huge financial decision as it is typically a buyer’s largest investment ever. So, making it easier and more comfortable for the buyer to say “yes!” to your home, should be on the top of every seller’s to do list! 

I’ll share my gift of experience with you as it relates to what NOT to do when listing your home for sale.

  1. Do not limit showing times. You should make it as easy as possibly to show your property, so that you have the most exposure and most traffic, particularly when you first list it for sale. 
  2. Don’t stay in the house during a showing. Buyers need privacy to discuss the positives and the shortcoming of a home to be able to determine if your home is in the running. This also gives your Realtor a chance to share alternatives or solutions to any potential shortcomings the buyer brings up.
  3. Don't forego a For Sale sign to maintain privacy. Having a for sale sign out front helps keep your neighbors and passersby informed. Often, it's a neighbor that wants their family or friend to move close by, that reaches out and tries to get them to buy your house. 
  4. Don’t ignore needed repairs. Most problems can have simple solutions, especially if done before you list your home for sale. Once a buyer is involved, and an inspection takes place, minor issues can quickly turn into deal breakers. 
  5. Don’t skimp on electricity. In Miami weather, you need to keep your home nice and cool inside, to keep humidity down and keep it comfortable for showings. Also, all lights should be on and functioning to keep your home looking bright and inviting. Replace those burnt-out light bulbs for a bright advantage!
  6. Don’t put off deep cleaning. Not only does the home need a deep cleaning focused on hard-to-reach places including ceiling fan blades, light switches, behind the fridge, all windows and baseboards, but the home has to be cleaned continuously to put its best foot forward. Don’t get me started on cooking and pet odors or overly perfumed candles…
  7. Don’t focus on the highest price. Often time it's the terms of a contract that are most important. Is the offer cash vs. financing? Does the offer have an appraisal contingency? Does the offer have a long inspection period? Does the offer come with a post occupancy allowing you to stay in the home for free 30 days after closing? All these terms can outweigh a price differential between competing offers if it’s a priority for you.

This list is not exhaustive but if you avoid these inconveniences, you truly will be closer to selling your house quickest and for the highest price. Give your potential buyer the least amount of hurdles, and you may be wrapping your keys up with a bow as a closing gift sooner than you think! 


Carole believes that our homes are an important part of our lives, giving us shelter, security, and a means of self-expression. Separate from the constraints of necessity, many homes are a microcosm for the things we hold most dear — family, memories, relaxation and sense of belonging.

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