Once you make the major decision to sell your home, there are ten steps that you need to take to get your home on the market. 

Step 1: De-clutter and move a large portion of your belongings into storage.

Step 2: Close out any open permits.

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Step 3: Fix any known issues. Make your home shine with a coat of fresh paint.

Step 4: Find a Realtor with whom you trust and will feel comfortable having in your home. Remember, this person will be responsible for your house during Open Houses. You and your agent should discuss your time frame for moving and the marketing and pricing strategy. Your agent should also guide you in finding someone who can help you find your next place to live.

Step 5: Work with your agent and a stager to make your home look as generic as possible to appeal to the widest audience possible. This could take a few days to a few weeks, depending on the current condition of your house.

Step 6: Prepare your home for professional photographs that will be used for your home brochure and online marketing via the MLS, Zillow and other real estate sites. Your agent may also bring in a floor plan designer.

Step 7: Work with your agent to review your home's brochure and ensure that all of your upgrades are included. You should allow a few days for the layout and printing.

Step 8: Complete the Seller's Disclosure. You should answer all questions honestly.

Step 9: Go live! Once your home is listed on the MLS, it could take up to 48 hours for the information to be disseminated to other online resources. 

Step 10: Keep your home clean and de-cluttered for the broker open house, weekend open houses and last-minute showings. Baking bread before an open house is always a nice touch as long as your don't burn it. Fresh flowers add color and a pleasant scent, too.

If you stage your home and price it well, hopefully you will soon be accepting an offer and moving on.

Shannon Severin is a Realtor with Keller Williams Mid-town Direct at 181 Maplewood Ave., Maplewood, NJ. If you have any real estate questions, she can be reached at shannon.severin@kw.com or www.homesnearnyc.com.