There's a difference between being upfront with potential buyers and selling your home short. Here are five things you should be honest about with interested buyers.

If you’re a homeowner planning to put up a for-sale sign on your front yard soon, you should know that the selling market is quite a difficult place to be in right now. It isn’t just because buyers have a myriad of options available or that they are armed with the right information gathered from their own investigation or straight from their agent.

It’s more about their fierce belief that they deserve excellent value for their hard-earned money. So if you get just even a little sloppy about it, nobody’s gonna take a quick glance over your property.

Then again, don’t ever think of hiding the fact that the walls backing onto your shower or bath have extensive signs of water leaks or moisture penetration. And you simply cannot just skip the part about your non-functioning roof downpipes or rusted roof gutters – because you might get slapped with a lawsuit for withholding information about existing defects.

Don’t squash a successful home sale by being honest about these 5 things:

1. Minor repairs and easy replacements

Things such as broken closet doors, burned-out light bulbs and dripping faucets are some of the home maintenance to-do list you should have done before entertaining prospective buyers into your home because it is a direct reflection of your concern for your property.

But if you have already ignored your responsibility for it or it’s just because you don’t have the time (and extra money) to attend to it, be honest about it. People would be more appreciative of the fact that you told them about the real situation.

2. Failure to clean and declutter

If you didn’t have the time to give your soon-to-be ex-home a good cleaning and decluttering before the potential homeowner comes in, give them notice in advance.

Although there’s a chance of letting their hopes down for seeing your excess stuff around and therefore, restricting their capability to envision themselves as future owners of this property, you don’t want to mislead them into thinking that you have properly staged the home for their arrival.

3. Delayed packing

Putting up your home for sale means you are within a restricted time frame to pack your stuff and head out of the door as soon as the deal is inked.

But if for one reason or another that this would be an improbable fact, let the potential homeowner know about it. It’s either they would give you more time to do so or they would be prefer to just hover around as you get the last box out – either way, you have given them the knowledge beforehand.

4. Foreclosure notice and/or delayed mortgage payments

Be honest about the fact that you're struggling to keep up with your mortgage payments and/or that the bank has given you a foreclosure notice. If you’ve fallen behind in the property tax payments as well, don’t skip out that part too. Future homeowners have the right to know these so they can be aware of fines and interests that come with buying your house.

5. Your availability

An interested buyer usually has a short window of time available for viewing your home, especially if they’re from out of town. But you have to say upfront that you are also very difficult to reach because of work, family obligations, etc.

If they are really interested in the property, they would still patiently wait to be accommodated in your schedule. But don’t try their patience too much. Your availability to show your home right away to the right buyer is essential if you are also serious about selling it.