Keeping a home clean while on the market and being ready for showings (without going insane) takes some know-how. I’m going to give you some tips on being ready for showings in less than 10 minutes. No more cleaning for an hour after every call from the appointment-service. Even in markets where homes are staying on the market for days or even hours, it’s crucial to put your best foot forward and know how to make your home display at it’s very best…so that you can count the cha-ching on all of those over-full price offers rolling in! First impressions count!
At this point, you should have done the prep-work (decluttering / depersonalizing your home) so that there is actually less “to” clean. Even if you’ve never had your home professionally cleaned before, now is the time to take advantage of a cleaning service and have your home deep-cleaned (so that the upkeep is easier on you). Below are some tips on how to make cleaning for home-showings less stressful. I would like to point out that it is imperative that you have a discussion with your entire household on the importance of everyone working together to keep the house in order while the home is on the market.
First and foremost, set a timer, get the whole family involved (if possible) to prep for showings.
1) Invest in large, plastic storage containers. These are great for stashing toys or a number of random items you don’t want lingering during a showing. Throw everything in and stack neatly in the garage so that you have easy-access to it later.
2) Vacuum everything. Forget the broom, which tends to just push dust around (and takes longer). Vacuum all of the floors.
3) Mirrors and Glass. Get in the habit of wiping down mirrors – every mirror in the home – each night before you go to bed. Touch up as needed.
4) Get in the habit of making up the bed as soon as you jump out of it. One less thing off of your list when you get “the call”.
5) Wicker Baskets. Storage is key. Use wicker baskets to stash under your bathroom sinks. No one wants to see your toiletries.
6) The dryer. Throw bathroom rugs in the dryer with a dryer sheet to fluff and freshen right before showings while you are working on the rest of the list.
7) Designated Spots. Make sure you have designated spots for everything, and a designated “storage area” to keep things like remotes / mail out of sight. The breakfast nook is not a designated spot for mail.
8) Showers. Make sure they sparkle! (Again, if you’ve done the prep-work, everything else is just “maintenance”. Keep an old Elmers glue bottle full of gel bleach for stubborn grout stains in the shower and dab on for a quick fix! Get in the habit of using a squeegee on your glass shower doors every time.
9) Bathroom countertops. Keep a countertop cleaner and paper towels in the bathroom cabinets to spritz the countertop as soon as you’re ready for work (or your day).
10) Furniture Polish. A little shine can go a long way for the appearance of “clean”. Spray quickly on your refrigerator / stainless steel / kitchen sink / bathroom sink basin and rub in for a great shine!
11) Clorox Bleach Tabs. It’s not all-natural cleaning but it does keep your toilet bowl fresh and clean. No one likes a dirty toilet!
12) Groom Your Pets More Frequently. This may seem like an odd statement, but if you groom your inside pets more often, there’s less hair to clean up later.
Designate certain upkeep tasks (ie: mopping the floors, dusting the ceiling fans, etc) to one task-list item per day. Do it quickly and market it off of the list. These suggestions may sound like common sense, but not letting items build up are the best way to keep a clean home.
Above anything else…make sure your home SMELLS fresh and clean (not masked by harsh chemicals / odors). Again, first impressions are key…and could mean the difference of someone walking in to your home and exploring as a possible home option….or stopping at the foyer and moving on to the next home. Don’t let your home be the latter.
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Amy Arey Realtor, Halo Group Realty | 214.901.1341-Cell AmyAreyRealtor@Gmail.com