6 Important Things to Do Before Selling Your Upper Saddle River Home

Taylor C. Lucyk


Upper Saddle River is a neighborhood known for sprawling estates and palatial homes. Nestled in the heart of Bergen County, Upper Saddle River has a quiet, exclusive feel for being so close to the urban heart of the nation. With buyers on the rise, moving from the city to more suburban-like communities, it's no surprise that homes for sale in Upper Saddle River are seeing overwhelming buyer interest among NYC's elite.

For homeowners in Upper Saddle River, there will rarely be a better time to sell your beautiful home. However, before you list, there are a few things to check off your to-do list. Selling your home for the best possible price means taking the time to prepare it for competition on the market.

If you're not sure what to do, follow these six simple steps before selling in the Upper Saddle River real estate market. Keep in mind that a knowledgeable real estate professional who knows the area, like Taylor Lucyk and his team, can provide you with vital guidance on many of these steps.

1. Get a full set of inspections

One of the first things your buyers may do is seek inspections. This is often part of the contingency phase after you accept a bid, but why let there be any surprises? Instead of letting buyers conduct the first serious maintenance inspection of the house, you can hire your own home inspector. Your inspector will put together the same list your buyer will see and use this as your checklist of issues to eliminate. Weak plumbing? Potential leak in the roof? Repairs now can boost your final price and avoid contingency issues.

Hiring an entire suite of inspectors will give you full insight into the state of your home before selling. (This may not be necessary, and you should consult with a real estate professional before scheduling.)
Get a full set of inspections
  • A home inspection takes a look at maintenance issues from top to bottom. They look for any issues that the potential homebuyer might want to know about before buying, from faulty electricity to cracked foundations. You should know about any issues ahead of time to avoid surprises.

  • A roof inspection is critical and ensures your roof is in top condition. Roof inspectors are more specialized than home inspectors.

  • An appliance inspection brings in a technician to make sure all your appliances are working correctly. This should include your oven, dishwasher, washer/dryer, water heater, and HVAC at a minimum, along with other appliances installed in the house.
Complete repairs and minor improvements
  • A property appraisal tells you what the bank valuation of your house, land, and overall property is worth. This will influence how much mortgage a lender would approve for buyers to purchase your house — and give a snapshot of the expected property taxes.

2. Complete repairs and minor improvements

Complete minor improvements
A “perfect” house will sell for more than a home with noticeable flaws. Make your home beautifully competitive by addressing repairs before you list.
  • Get the home energy-efficient with low-cost, easy improvements. Lay a new bead of caulk around non-opening windows and place new weather stripping on doors and on windows that open.

  • Have your appliances repaired and/or tuned up and serviced so they are in top condition.

  • Check around the house for any signs of shabbiness. Replace door knobs that have come loose, dated cabinet handles, or carpets that have worn past their best-buy date to reveal your home's true beauty.

  • If you want to maximize the value you'll get for the house, consider one or two major replacements. A new roof can add a few tens of thousands to the listing price, as can a new HVAC or water heater if the old units were reaching their lifespan. (This should also be discussed with your realtor before making any serious repairs.)

3. Repaint and refinish

Repaint and refinish
A fresh coat of paint can be essential when preparing to sell a house. Fresh paint is an easy way to make a home look, feel, and even smell like it was just built. Whether you're refreshing the existing colors or preparing a new color palette, professional painting makes a difference. 
  • Choose a welcoming, neutral color palette for new paint on the walls, cabinets, and built-in furniture, favoring warm greige, soft gray-green, and cool charcoals. These neutral colors allow buyers to write in their own favorite colors. However, a subtle difference in shade and hue can also highlight the home's potential for accent walls even without the signature splash of color.

  • For stained and finished wood, refinish it. You can repolish, oil, and perfect your wood surfaces, from raw cabinets to hardwood floors. You can even restain the wood for a new color balance. For stone, like countertops and mantelpieces, you can have it buffed and resealed to remove imperfections.

4. Deep clean the house inside and out

Finally, you are ready to clean the house in preparation for staging and selling. The deep clean can be a crucial stage in preparing a home for sale because this is when you freshen every surface and prepare the home to become the canvas for the new buyer. Deep cleaning can also be a lot of fun, but you can of course hire a cleaning service to do all or some of the dirty work for you.
Deep clean the house inside and out
  • Rent a steam cleaner or a carpet cleaning service for your carpets and any drapes that remain. Cleaned carpets should be fresh, fluffy, and close to their original color.

  • In the bathroom and kitchen, take a little bleach to the grout in between the tiles. A small brush and mild bleach solution can work wonders to make the whole space look bright and new again.
Deep clean the outside
  • You could rent a power washer and (with approval from a home inspector) wash the siding exterior of the house and all your pavement. You can blast years of dirt from the side of the house and out of your driveway concrete. Your home and pavement will look sparkling clean when you are done.

  • Don't forget to change every air and water filter in the house, flush the water heater, and have the HVAC coils cleaned.

  • Leave no corner un-scrubbed. You and/or your hired team should get into every corner with a brush to remove the last vestiges of dust and cobwebs.

  • Now it's time to get a ladder. One of the toughest (and most often forgotten) cleaning tasks is dusting the upper areas. Dust the light fixtures, ceiling fans, crown molding, and vent registers in every room to make your vaulted ceilings crisp and clean from every possible angle.

  • Finally, wash your windows on both sides. Windows rarely look clean when washed only on the inside; you need two sides of clear glass for a smudge-free, crystal-clear view.

5. Stage the home for the buyers you want

Stage the home for the buyers you want
As you near the time to list, it's time to think about home staging. Buyers will be most inspired to bid high on your Upper Saddle River home when they can envision themselves in every room. That means giving them something to envision; this is the art of home staging.
  • Staging "sets the stage" for buyers to write their own stories about a house. A small dining set in the breakfast nook and kid's beds made up in the bedrooms can inspire visions of family. A cozy seating area or lounge furniture on the deck can inspire visions of relaxing evenings and good conversations. A desk and shelf in the spare room inspire visions of a perfect home office. All it takes is a nudge to help buyers' imaginations. Staging furniture provides a little context for each room.

  • Staging is best done with small-profile furniture. Spindly chairs and square or round dining tables are a classic real estate trick to make a room feel spacious while also providing the feel of a fully furnished house.

  • Window treatments matter when staging, especially for luxury real estate. Remove your personal window treatments and make sure there are no dated mini blinds. Use tasteful, filmy curtains or elegant fabric shades to control the light in each room and provide some elements of decor without overpowering the space.

  • Remember that each room is merely a representation of what could be there. You only need a few pieces of furniture and decor to spotlight each space. Let your buyer's imagination do the rest. It is recommended to seek professional advice from your expert real estate professional, Taylor Lucyk.

6. Prepare your bid acceptance strategy

Prepare your bid acceptance strategy
Last but not least, you will need to consider preparing your bid acceptance strategy. When you list your Upper Saddle River home, expect a wash of bids from eager buyers looking to leave the dense urban areas nearby for more spacious and luxurious suburban settings. You will need to choose the best bid, both considering the highest number and the best negotiation terms included in the offer. In addition to providing guidance on the above steps, including recommending inspectors and home stagers, a skilled real estate agent can help you prepare your strategy and carefully compare each bid to the others as you decide who to sell your luxurious home to.

Are you preparing to sell your Upper Saddle River home? Taylor Lucyk, a top-performing real estate expert in Upper Saddle River real estate, can help you build your strategy, prepare your property, and find the best possible price in this ever-changing market. Contact us today to get started on your selling strategy.


Whether you are a first-time homebuyer, an experienced investor, curious about what your home is currently worth, looking to rent, or have any other real estate related inquiries, please reach out to the Taylor Lucyk Group. We are here to redefine your real estate experience.

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