Hire or DIY? Prepping Your House for the Market

house for sale

You’re putting up your home for sale soon. But before you make important decisions about the sales process like choosing between high street or online estate agents, solicitors, and so on, you need to make improvements.

Should you hire professionals, or can you handle this? We think prepping a house for sale is a combination of both DIY and hiring some help. But many homeowners are intimated. They think prepping a home involves making huge renovations or purchasing expensive furniture. You don’t have to renovate anything or buy anything unless you don’t want to.

What we do recommend is not overlooking great investment opportunities either. Sure, at first you may think getting a new deck will be too expensive, but note that it can value to your home. We want to show you that there are many thinks you can DIY but also give you some great investment ideas.

So, if you the extra time before putting your house up for sale, and you’re looking for some guidance, you’ll find these tips to be right up your alley.

drill - diy tipsSource: Unsplash

What Needs Prepping?

I guess this depends on your home, but in general, there are a few basic things you should do before focusing on the areas of your home.

1. Make Small Repairs

Small repairs to your home do not involve much work so you can absolutely DIY them if your want to. If you’re dealing with a broken appliance such as a stove, however; then you may have to call someone to fix it unless you want buy a new one.

For other things (list below) make Youtube your best friend. Again, don’t think you have to do it all a lone. There are certainly things in this list that may require an expert depending on your level of knowledge and comfortability.

  • Patch any holes and crack in the walls

  • Fix leaky pipes and faucets

  • Clean, or replace old carpeting

  • Wash hardwood floors

  • Many any needed repairs to your roof

2. Declutter

Wowing prospective buyers doesn’t involve doing or buying anything fancy. Just clean up and organize your stuff. Put away anything on top of surfaces (kitchen counters, coffee table, bathroom sink, etc.) Anything that stays out should be intentional. These can be fresh flowers on your kitchen table, a giant book on top of your coffee table, a few plants that you already have around your home.

Every room, including your patio and backyard need to look like you just moved in. Your furniture and appliances can stay. Put away toys, picture frames, pots and pans, clothes, and miscellaneous items. But don’t just toss everything in your junk drawers and closets. Buyers will open those. Make some room in your garage or basement to put away all these objects.

declutterSource: Unsplash

3. Automate

You will really impress buyers by adding some automation and tech features to your home. This can be an alarm system, or a smart shower head device that can save buyers 50% on water use. Sounds appealing, right? Being able to call your house “green” or “energy efficient” immediately adds value to your home.

Thermostats like, Nest can also save buyers on energy use when they aren’t home as Nest learns to power down when there’s no one home. Energy efficiency is good for the environment and good for saving money, too. Want in on more tips to add value to your home? Read all about it here.

4. Decorate and Renovate with Simplicity and Elegance

renovationSource: Unsplash

A home should be a sanctuary. That is the overall impression you want to give when you’re prepping your house for the market. We talked about decluttering because you want buyers to see the possibilities of what your home can be to them. Stuff on top of things and twenty picture frames on your walls, will get in the way of that. Making small repairs is also important as buyers will surprisingly notice the of smallest details.

But, for you, decluttering and making those smaller repars is probably only half the problem. You may be dealing with an dated kitchen, bathroom or deck. This is where you can seek the advice of design experts. As mentioned earlier, bigger renovation projects can boost the price of your home. So, while you may be in a budget, do the math. Note how much you’re planning to spend on renovations and how much you will profit in the end. This should help you decide whether to hire design experts or not.

Maybe you don’t need a full intricate build-out. You can hire experts to make specific additions such as adding granite or marble countertops to your kitchen, replacing your kitchen cabinets with beautiful new ones, or adding new stone tile to your bathroom. You don’t have to

Another great way to grab your buyers attention is with decor. Experts can help with this too or you can DIY.

5. Pressure Washing

Your home’s interior is not the only selling point. Pressure washing can make your home’s exterior look like new. You can absolutely rent, or buy a pressure washer or hire experts for the job.

With a pressure washer you can revitalize your deck, sidings, and driveway. Pressure washing is also great for cleaning gutters (you want to make sure these are clean before new buyers move in) and while you’re at it, use a pressure washer to get rid of dirt and stains on patio furniture.

Can you DIY? Sure, here are some tips on how to pressure wash your home’s exterior. But if you’re running with little time, or you’ve never used a pressure washer before, and feel intimidated (you shouldn’t, it’s pretty easy and can be fun) getting some professionals in to help, can save you time and headaches. Just make sure you have a list handy of what surfaces you wish to clean:

  • Driveway

  • Sidewalks

  • Patio Furniture

  • Deck

  • Windows

  • Gutters

Bonus Tip: Since you’ll have a pressure washer around, you can also use it to clean your grill, vehicle, lawn mower, tile, and just about any outdoor concrete and wood surfaces.


In all honesty, when it comes to prepping your house for the market, there are some things you can DIY, but other things that experts can probably do better. This is not to say you, alone, cannot do many of the above. But if you want to really stand out, you’re pressing for time, and want to make an investment on your home, a combination DIY and expertise might just be the perfect answer.