Christian Real Estate Professionals : The First Impression Just May Be Your Last When Selling Charlotte Real Estate

The First Impression Just May Be Your Last When Selling Charlotte Real Estate


Seller AwarenessThe First Impression Just May Be Your Last When Selling Charlotte Real Estate

When people meet you for the first time, their first impression is typically a lasting one.  You will also never get a second chance to make that first impression when you’re selling your Charlotte real estate either.  You need to present your home at its very best all the time, regardless of the amount of time your home has been on the market.

        Here are 4 things you can do to make a great first impression:

Landscaping is a critical first impression when selling your home.

  1.  Clean Up the Yard:  A messy yard is, simply put, a distraction.  It can be time consuming to keep up with general yard work, but it’s certainly worth the effort.  Overgrown shrubs, limp lawns, and general disarray can turn off a potential buyer.  If you have to hire someone to come in and give your yard a quick pick me up, it’s well worth the money.

    Decluttered shows the living space and makes a home look larger

  2. Get Rid of Items You Don't Need:  Be very diligent about this and get rid of all but the bare necessities. You don't have to throw or give everything away.  Find a storage unit and put the things in there you will be taking with you to your new home but do not need immediate access to for now.  Remember, you’re going to have to pack it up ANYWAY when you move!  Declutter!

    Repairs DONE!

  3. Fix Up the Little Things:  After all,  It IS the little things that count. If you have a leaky faucet, a broken tile in the floor or a crack on the wall, now is the time to fix it.  It's little flaws like this that make potential buyers worry that there are bigger problems waiting to be found.  Many buyers feel that if you haven’t taken care of the little things, there may be larger, underlying items that you haven’t cared for either.

    Appealing Front Door
  4. The Front Door:  How does your front door greet your buyers?  Many of us pull into our garages, rarely ever using our front door other than to greet guests from the inside—never seeing what our guests see as they’re standing at the door waiting for us to greet them.  Are there cobwebs?  Are there bugs and debris on the doorstep?  Is your welcome mat 20 years old?  Is there paint peeling and cracking on the door?  The best first impression IS the front door:  Paint it, keep the area around the door—whether it’s a step, a stoop or a porch—clean and free of debris.  And, put out a new welcome mat and fresh seasonal flowers in a nice pot—make them feel at home before they even open the door!

Selling Charlotte real estate is a lot of work but, it is well worth the time investment in properly preparing your home.  You can get it sold faster, easier and for the most money when you take the time to make a great first impression.

If you have any questions about what you can do to make your home sell faster, I can help. Call me or email me today.  

Visit for more Charlotte real estate information.

Other seller tips to help you get your Charlotte real estate SOLD:

Preparing Your Charlotte Home for a Quick Sale  

Open Season on Homes for Sale in Charlotte NC – Hunting License Not Needed, but a Realtor® is HIGHLY Recommended! -

Calculating Absorption Rate Pricing

Setting the Right Selling Price for Your Charlotte Home for Sale

 Why Isn't Your Charlotte NC Real Estate Selling?

Pricing It Right--Objectivity is Crucial

Sellers, You've GOT to FIX It If You Want to SELL It!

Summertime Seller Tips - Tips for Selling Your Charlotte NC Home

The Maxwell House Group Charlotte NC


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Debe Maxwell, Realtor®/Broker/CRS

RE/MAX Executive
Direct:  (704) 491-3310


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Comment balloon 29 commentsDebe Maxwell, CRS • July 28 2010 12:45AM


Debe, this strikes very close to home especially after what I saw at some open houses this past weekend...

Posted by TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc., Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029 (Complete Home Inspections, Inc.) about 10 years ago

If the sellers are willing to do their part then maybe just about anything can sell.

Posted by John Walters, Licensed in Louisiana (Frank Rubi Real Estate) about 10 years ago

Very good advice for home sellers. Best wishes for continued success.

 Blooming for home buyers.

Posted by Roy Kelley (Realty Group Referrals) about 10 years ago

Simple and clear.  If only all sellers would. . . . . .

Decluttering is often the hardest thing.  Far too many home sellers beleive that, just because they love these little personal touches, they believe that prospective buyers will be charmed by them too.

Not so.

Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley,, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) about 10 years ago

Debe of course these are all great tips! They are all very cost effective as well.

Posted by Bill Gassett, Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate (RE/MAX Executive Realty) about 10 years ago

Good morning Debe,

Great advice and you are right selling real estate is alot of work but worth the time and investment!

Posted by Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR, Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate (Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899) about 10 years ago

As the old saying goes, you never get a second chance at a first impression.

Posted by Craig Rutman, Raleigh, Cary, Apex area Realtor (Helping people in transition) about 10 years ago

Boy, you hit the top 4. I have never seen it put as precise. Perfect, taking care of these 4 items as a seller and you are well on your way. I always emphasis the Front Door. The buyers will be standing there with the agent fumbling with the lock box, it better shine.

Thank you

Posted by Scott Baker, Realtor Homes for Sale Cincinnati/Dayton Ohio ( Coldwell Banker West Shell) about 10 years ago

Great points Debe, if you want to sell your home and for the best possible price, it does take a little effort.

Posted by Gabe Sanders, Stuart Florida Real Estate (Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales) about 10 years ago

Hi Debe! It's so good to "see"you! I've been a pretty busy girl and haven't had the chance to read many blog posts lately and I've missed you! I can't believe how important the front door is to a home.  Especially if we're showing and the lockbox is located there.  It can take several minutes to get through sometimes which means that's exactly what those buyers are focused on for awhile.  EXCELLENT Post!

Naples Real Estate


Posted by Shannon Lefevre, Shannon Lefevre, PA Your Naples Smart Girl (John R. Wood Properties) about 10 years ago

Great points ma'am.  The seller needs to do everything they can to improve the home before it goes on the market which will help in getting a quick offer and sale.

Posted by Don Rogers, Realtor, Broker, CDPE, GRI, OnullFallon MO & St Charles County MO homes (Keller Williams Realty Chesterfield) about 10 years ago

Debe, I especially like the suggestion about the front door.  What a difference a fresh coat of paint or even just wiping it down makes a huge difference. 

Posted by Erika Rogers, St George Utah Real Estate & Relocation Specialist (Red Rock Real Estate ~ Southern Utah's Largest Independent Brokerage) about 10 years ago

Precise and concise!  Excellent tips for all Sellers to abide by!

Posted by Kathy Kenney, Realtor - Princeton & Central NJ Homes for Sale (Keller Williams, Princeton, NJ) about 10 years ago


Way to keep up the reminders and open mindsets for old and new Sellers... g

Posted by Cherise Selley, Colorado Springs Realtor (Selley Group Real Estate, LLC) about 10 years ago

I think the older the couple the less likely they are to set the stage for a sale.  These are all great points and I wish all sellers would heed to advice.

Posted by Tammie White, Broker, Franklin TN Homes for Sale (Franklin Homes Realty LLC) about 10 years ago

Debe, no wonder your sellers love you!  You know what it takes to get a home staged to sell... My favorite is the front door!  If that shines and smells good it reflects (right or wrong) on the condition of the home. 

Posted by Lee & Pamela St. Peter, Making Connections to Success in Real Estate (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices YSU Realty: (919) 645-2522) about 10 years ago

All fantastic points Debe!

I will just add that those first impressions can begin with online listing photos as well, make them count. I'm still amazed at how many people still don't get it. I was just looking around online this morning and could not believe the clutter, 50 personal photos and items and unkept yards. "It is the little things that count" Absolutely, you don't want to turn off potential buyers by making them go "hummm, what else might be wrong."


Posted by Leslie Causey (LC Home Staging & Redesign) about 10 years ago

This is a great list, I love it! I have seen a lot of these "getting your house ready" brochures designed for sellers, and they often are way too long and cumbersome. Sellers are already up to their eyeballs in stress and chaos, if you hand them a two page document with twenty line items their eyes just roll back into their head and they set it aside and do none of them. Your list, on the other hand, focuses on the important items, is easy, totally doable, and inexpensive AND they could knock them off in an afternoon (or two). I am bookmarking for future reference. Thanks!!!

Posted by Linda Humphrey, CRS, Broker/Owner HHC Realty (Humphrey Home Connections Realty, Reno, Nevada) about 10 years ago

Debe, your post really hits the nail on the head.  i try to explain to my sellers that the front door area needs to be spectacular.  While the buyer agent is fiddling with the supra key and trying to open the door, the buyers have nothing else to do but look at the front door, steps, pretty flowers (or lack thereof) while forming their first impression!

Posted by Melissa Brown, Realtor - South Charlotte NC Homes for Sale (Helen Adams Realty) about 10 years ago

Great article!  I would add a couple of things to the "front door" list:  1. Install new hardware on the door if it's tarnished or scratched.  2. Wash the front door light fixture.  Both of these things make a huge difference!  Also, fill any cracks in the driveway and sidewalk leading up to the front door.

Posted by Lisa Vargas (THE PROFESSIONALS Home Staging & Design) about 10 years ago

As an agent you see all condition scenarios. The best seller I ever had simply stated to me, "You're the expert; tell me what to do." And we did. He vacated the home and moved into his new place; we replaced the carpeting, kitchen counter and floor, fresh paint throughout, and then we staged it. It was wonderful and oh for more of this type of seller!

Posted by Kristina Heili, Comprehensive Real Estate Services (Keller Williams Premier Realty) about 10 years ago

Hello Debe:

Your list is one that is very good, but I have different question.  Do you offer these as suggestions or do you make taking the listing contingent on the seller making a commitment to follow through on these?  Do you attempt to put a financial value on doing these or not doing these? Just curious.


Brian Rugg


Posted by Brian Rugg, Sun City TX Real Estate - Georgetown, TX Real Est (Rugg Realty LLC Sun City Texas 512-818-6700) about 10 years ago

Very good post.  People should make the house look as nice as possible.

Posted by Gene Riemenschneider, Turning Houses into Homes (Home Point Real Estate) about 10 years ago


Great list, this is exactly what I tell my clients and sometimes they get it and sometimes they don't.

I furnish them a list of to dos if they want to DIY, instead of hiring me to do the work.


Posted by Brenda Hughes, Home Staging & Re-Design Southern IN, KY (Evansville Home Staging & Re-Design) about 10 years ago

Debe, I absolutely agree about the front door. It's almost silly how we keep one and how it affects something as important as buying/selling a home ... and yet it goes unused 99.9% of the time. As I research (and photograph) more, that first impression is about the entire area around the door, not just the door.

Posted by Tina Gleisner, Home Tips for Women (Home Tips for Women) about 10 years ago

Hi Everyone!  Thank you all so much for your comments! 

Melissa--you're absolutely correct--I've doubled up with agents (training new agents to show homes) and of course, they're always using the Supra key and I'm observing the buyers doing just that--looking up, down and all around the front door.  It DOES make a huge difference.

Lisa:  The hardware and clean light fixtures is a biggie too! They should both sparkle!

Brian:  At the first meeting, I always suggest that we make a list of things that need to be done before listing.  When they tell me they're ready to go, they usually offer up each and everything that they have completed and if, by chance, they don't I ask.  If they didn't think it was important enough, I obviously didn't make my case that it's not only about bringing a more 'solid' offer but, simply bringing in a buyer!  Their first impression lends itself to the perception of being well maintained or not.  Who wants to buy a home that hasn't been well cared for--unless they're getting a steal on the property, right?! 


Posted by Debe Maxwell, CRS, The right Charlotte REALTOR! ( | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310) about 10 years ago

Yes, please to all of these.  I showed a home last week where the back yard was just piles of dirt and the homeowner was in the backyard moving the piles of dirt around the yard.  What???  I'm thinking, art installation gone wrong?  LOL.

Posted by Cindy Abel, Broker/Owner - Las Vegas Homes and Real Estate (Southern Nevada Realty, LLC) about 10 years ago

We recently started using our front door instead of entering through the garage, and even though I thought I was keeping up with the clean-up outside, I was surprised at how many dead leaves, spider webs, etc., had gathered in that area just in the week or so since I had last taken a look at it. You're right...people don't normally use their own front doors as an entry point and thus don't notice what they look like up close. Great idea to make a point of cleaning that area.

Posted by Sonsie Conroy, Energetic, Enthusiastic, Knowledgeable Realtor (I serve buyers and sellers everywhere in San Luis Obispo County) about 10 years ago

Hi Debe, thanks for sharing. Do you mind if I revise your list a bit and add it to my pre listing package. Thanks!

Posted by Liane Thomas -Top Listing Agent, Bringing you Home! (Professional Realty Services® International ) about 10 years ago

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