The thing about first impressions is there is only one shot at it. A first impression only happens once, the first time a potential buyer sees your property. It is why it is so important to prepare your home to present at its best before actively showing your home to buyers.
There is no substitute for good old elbow grease.
Clean, de-clutter and clean again. The most modest of properties can look inviting by being clean, uncluttered and bright.
A first impression always starts at the curb. Maybe just a drive-by to see if it is worth making an appointment with the listing agent to view the interior.
Yard. The grass must be kept cut and trimmed. Consider contracting with a lawn service to maintain your yard while your home is on the market. Not only will it always look good, but it will be one less chore to worry about.
Power wash. A good power washing of the exterior of the house along with the hard-surfaced walkways and driveway will make a big difference. Not only will you clean the brick or siding but knock down any insect nests and spider webs.
Clean windows. After power washing, windows will need to be cleaned in order to be streak-free and let the light into the house.
Front door. Make sure the front door is clean and fresh and in good repair. A coat of paint in a tasteful color will complete a neat and tidy fresh look.