Trust me, YOU may like grandma's dresser but unfortunately, it didn't fit on the moving truck. Don't leave it for the new owners--they don't want it either! The old saying "one man's junk is another man's treasure" does NOT apply here. The new owners don't want to deal with your belongings, even if you think you're leaving them a family treasure. They have their own stuff they've brought or have bought to make your old home their own.
|Don't Leave Your Stuff for the New Owners|
to Clean Up
One other thing they don't want is your dirt and pet hair. At a minimum, leave the home in "broom-swept" condition with the cupboards and appliances wiped clean. Better yet, hire a house-cleaner to do a quick once-over. The way you leave a home is a reflection on you.
There may be exceptions, however. Paint or stain that is in good condition and matches the current wall colors may be left for touch-ups by the new owners. Dried up paint from two updates ago don't belong--throw it out. Make sure to leave any manuals for appliances, keys, garage door openers, window screens, towel bars, window treatments, TV mounts attached to the wall, and a list of vendors such as repairmen that are familiar with your home.
|Don't Leave Your Boat Either-Even if it floats!|
Same thing applies outside. Don't leave items in the yard unless they belong there or they were part of the purchase agreement. The old tractor and parts that have been stuck in the grass behind the garage have got to go. If you have a fireplace or fire pit, a neatly stacked pile of firewood is appropriate to leave. A nice gesture is to leave the grass cut so the new owners don't have to worry about that at the same time they're trying to move into their new home.
In our market, it's customary for the new owners to transfer utility services effective the day of close. It's up to the agents to help facilitate that by providing utility information and contact numbers. If the seller cancels service, the new buyer may incur re-connection fees charged by the utility companies.
Again, the best way to make sure there is a smooth transition between buyer and seller, leave the home clean and empty--just like you'd like to enter YOUR new home!