You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression

Most buyers look for homes that are well cared for and clean

Front yard/outside:  

  1. Front door - paint or stain if needed, new doorknob if tarnished, a new Welcome mat!
  2. Clean front porch; make sure all spider webs are gone! Don’t want to look like a haunted house!
  3. Lawns and yards – remove clutter, cut grass, edge walk ways, trim hedges & trees, weed gardens, put down new mulch, rake leaves, plant blooming flowers near front walk and in front beds, paint fences. Make sure shrubs do NOT cover windows. Make sure all tree limbs are trimmed so that you can walk under them without ducking.
  4. Front of house – paint, fix or wash railings, steps, screens and replace burnt-out light bulbs.
  5. Other exterior – side or back door, clean gutters, wash windows, clean outside A/C unit, paint mailbox, pressure-wash all patios, walkways and driveway.
  6. Clear patios or decks of small items such as flower pots, charcoal, barbeques.
  7. Finish any unfinished projects
  8. Put away tools, garbage cans, hoses & toys

Inside: make it feel like home:

  1. Let the sun shine in! Open the blinds and curtains all the way. Be sure your windows are clean. 
  2. Turn on all the lights for showings, make sure every bulb is clean, light fixtures dusted, every bulb is working.
  3. Remove clutter – box up items you won’t need before house sells.  Promote a feeling of spaciousness – store those unnecessary items and furniture to ‘enlarge’ room size.
  4. Rearrange furniture so that it will create the most space, ensure good traffic flow.
  5. Take down or rearrange pictures or other objects on the wall.
  6. Heating/Cooling – clean interior vents and air returns. Wash or replace filters.
  7. Clean the fireplace.
  8. Hall and stairs – remove any clutter and clean corners (wide, open, clean appearance)
  9. Clean all carpets and drapes or replace with neutral colors.
  10. Bookcases – remove 1/3 of items to show available room.
  11. Kitchen – stove, refrigerator & sink should be spotless. Remove small appliances from counter top. Expose the maximum of counter space.
  12. Cast a ‘stranger’s eye’ to see if anything overly personal (urns, photos, personal art, books, movies, effects) remain, if so, store away
  13. Bathrooms – leave neat, spotless and fresh – make sure this room sparkles and smells good! Repair chips in tubs & sinks, repair broken caulking around tub and sink. Put in bright towels and rugs, shine mirrors and fixtures.
  14. Closets – clean out all closets as untidy or overcrowded closets suggest inadequate storage space.
  15. If you smoke or have pets – make sure there is no odor! Deodorize and stop smoking in the house!
  16. Bedrooms – make bright and cheerful, neat & tidy, relaxing. Make beds, clean out closets and clean off bedside tables. Dust ceiling fans and declutter shelves. Remove excess furniture if possible, take down any questionable photos/art/books in yours or the kids room and be sure to hang up and put away all clothes.
  17. Paint any stained walls, staying neutral and light.
  18. Clean all woodwork, baseboards, doors. Clean all window ledges to give nice view!