Prepare your Home for the Selling process
Meals. You don’t have to spend money going out, just plan for simpler meals that can be cleaned up quickly. Opt for paper plates and other disposable service.
Kids. Keep a go bag ready in your car with age-appropriate items such as diaper bags, toys and books. If you have school-age kids, make this a welcome homework break.
Pets. Plan to take them with you whenever possible. Strangers traipsing through the house can be stressful and if they’re likely to bark a lot, it’s best they come with you. Keep their kennel, food and majority of their accessories in the garage or other space outside the main living areas.
Bathrooms. Personal items need to be off the counter. It can be helpful to give everyone a basket, much like a dorm toiletry kit, that can be brought out when needed. Put out show towels only, including the hand towel. Personal towels can be put in closets on a hangar, and a daily use hand towel can be hung inside the sink cabinet. Clean bathrooms every day.
Clean as you go. Get everyone in the habit of cleaning as they go. Make beds and tidy rooms before you go out in the morning. Clean up an activity before moving on to another. Eat and clean up right away. Deal with mail and put everything in its place right away (trash the junk mail). Who knows? Maybe it will become a habit that makes life in your new home that much better.
Minute 1: Kitchen. Wipe down counters, put away food, shine fixtures. Even if you can’t rinse off dirty dishes, stick them in the dishwasher to be addressed later.
Minute 2: Bathrooms. Make sure everyone’s baskets are stowed. Wipe down the counters and mirrors, shine the fixtures.
Minute 3: Main living areas. Get out those throw pillows and blankets just for showing the house (the ones without the dog drool on them!).
Minute 6: Turn on all the lights. This lights every part of the room and brings warmth even in daylight.
Minute 7: Open all the blinds/curtains. Make the rooms appear brighter and bigger.
Minute 8: Light candles. You know, that one that smells like cookie dough. Or turn on diffusers. Gets your house smelling nice and makes things oh so cozy. If you’re worried about flames, get some battery-operated candles that flicker. Natural sprays based in orange or lemon are pleasing but not chemical smelling.
Minutes 9-10: Get everyone out the door. Slip-on shoes or crocs kept in the garage, mudroom or coat closet might be a time saver. If you’ve got a bunch of kids and animals, it could take a bit longer.
Ready to give it a try? It’s always a good idea to practice before you get the first showing notice. This is especially true if you have some unpredictable variables (aka kids and pets). Good luck!