House on the green grass

Home Sale Preparation Checklist

Here is a list of home features, tips and things you can consider in sprucing up your home for that first date with your homebuyer. Accomplish a little everyday and soon your home will be ready to make that lasting first impression.


Your  Home’s Curb Appeal                              


❑ Mow lawn

❑ Trim shrubs

❑ Edge gardens and walkways

❑ Weed  and mulch

❑ Sweep walkways and driveway, remove branches, litter or toys

❑ Add color and fill in bare spots with plantings

❑ Remove mildew or moss from  walls or walks  with bleach and water or other cleaner

❑ Take stains off your driveway with cleanser or kitty litter

❑ Stack woodpile neatly

❑ Clean and repair patio and deck area

❑ Remove any outdoor furniture which is not  in good repair

❑ Make  sure pool  or spa sparkles

❑ Check for flat-fitting roof shingles

❑ Repair broken windows and shutters, replace torn screens, make sure frames and seams have solid caulking

❑ Hose off exterior wood  and trim, replace damaged bricks or wood

❑ Touch up exterior paint, repair gutters and eaves

❑ Clean and remove rust from  any window air conditioning units

❑ Paint the front door and mailbox

❑ Add a new front door mat and consider a seasonal door decoration

❑ Shine brass hardware on front door, outside lighting fixtures, etc.

❑ Make  sure doorbell is in good working order


General Interior Tips

❑ Add a fresh coat of interior paint in light, neutral colors

❑ Shampoo carpeting, replace if necessary

❑ Clean and wax hardwood floors, refinish if necessary

❑ Clean and wash kitchen and bathroom floors

❑ Wash all windows, vacuum blinds, wash window sills

❑ Clean the fireplace

❑ Clean out  and organize closets, add extra space by packing clothes and items you won’t need again until after you’ve moved

❑ Remove extra furniture, worn rugs, and items you don’t use;  keep papers, toys, etc. picked up—especially on stairways

❑ Repair problems such as loose door knobs, cracked molding, leaking taps and toilets, squeaky doors, closets or screen doors which are  off their tracks

❑ Add dishes of potpourri, or drop of vanilla or bath oil on light bulbs for scent

❑ Secure jewelry, cash and other valuables


The  Living Room

❑ Make  it cozy and inviting, discard chipped or worn furniture and frayed or worn rugs


The  Dining Room

❑ Polish any visible silver and crystal

❑ Set the table to help viewers imagine entertaining here


The  Kitchen

❑ Make  sure appliances are  spotless inside and out  (try baking soda for cleaning Formica stains)

❑ Make  sure all appliances are  in perfect working order

❑ Clean often forgotten spots on top  of refrigerator and under sink

❑ Wax or sponge floor to brilliant shine, clean baseboards

❑ Unclutter all counter space, remove countertop appliances

❑ Organize items inside cabinets, pre-pack anything you won’t be using before you move


The  Bathrooms

❑ Remove all rust and mildew

❑ Make  sure tile, fixtures, shower doors, etc. are  immaculate and shining

❑ Make  sure all fixtures are  in good repair

❑ Replace loose caulking or grout

❑ Make  sure lighting is bright, but soft


The  Master Bedroom

❑ Organize furnishings to create a spacious look with well-defined sitting, sleeping, and dressing areas

The  Garage

❑ Sell, give away, or throw out  unnecessary items

❑ Clean oily cement floor

❑ Provide strong overhead light

❑ Tidy storage or work areas


The  Basement

❑ Sell, give away, or throw out  unnecessary items

❑ Organize and create more floor space by hanging tools and placing items on shelves

❑ Clean water heater and drain sediment

❑ Change furnace filter

❑ Make  inspection access easy

❑ Clean and paint concrete floor and walls

❑ Provide strong overhead light


The  Attic

❑ Tidy up by discarding or pre-packing

❑ Make  sure energy-saving insulation is apparent

❑ Make  sure air vent is in working order

❑ Provide strong overhead lighting

❑ Leave a flashlight close by in case buyers want to look at the attic or crawlspace


When It’s Time To Show

❑ Make  sure your property profile folder, utility  bills, MLS profile, house location survey, etc. are  available

❑ Open all draperies and shades, turn on all lights

❑ Pick up toys  and other clutter, check to make sure beds are  made and clothes are put away

❑ Give the carpets a quick vacuuming

❑ Add some strategically placed fresh flowers

❑ Open bathroom windows for fresh air

❑ Pop a spicy dessert or just a pan of cinnamon in the oven for aroma

❑ Turn off the television and turn on the radio music at a low volume

❑ Make  a fire in the fireplace if appropriate

❑ Put pets in the backyard or arrange for a friend to keep them

❑ Make  sure pet  areas are  clean and odor- free

❑ Make  sure all trash is disposed of in neatly covered bins

❑ Head out  ten or more minutes before the show time for buyers to arrive and focus on the home