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5 Things to Do Before Listing Your Home for Sale

As home staging experts, we’ve seen a lot of homes and regardless of the awe-inspiring layout or beautiful interior, when a home hits the market, the first impression reigns supreme. Focusing on these 5 things to do before selling your home makes your homes first impression memorable.

What Impression Does Your Home Give Off?

A prospective buyer’s first moments in your home are crucial and their opinion is often influenced by little things you might not expect; scattered toys, hand prints and smudges, the cat’s litter box, and overflowing bookshelves are just some of things home buyers notice and not in a good way.

If you’ve ever watched House Hunters on HGTV, you’ll see that buyers form opinions immediately upon entering a home. They’re swayed by ugly paint colors, old and sagging furniture, clutter, and stained carpet to name a few.

This is your chance to dazzle and shine or fizzle and fade.

Use these 5 things to maximize your home’s appeal and value. First, tackle the obvious:

The Ugly

It’s understandable. You’re attached to that pea-green armchair you bought when your first baby was born 17 years ago. You adore your collection of ceramic roosters that’s grown to alarming numbers…

We’re not telling you to throw the things you love away, but to take a close look at your space and if an item looks old and tired, or is distracting from the integrity of your space, put it in storage.

Look for:

  • Beat up furniture
  • Ratty or stained throw rugs
  • Anything extremely dated
  • Décor that distracts from the space
  • Clutter, clutter, and more clutter

You might be thinking that these are all things that have nothing to do with the actual integrity of the home – all things that can be changed with ease. It’s true, but these items make big impressions and have the power to affect your ability to sell fast and for top price.

The Dirty

When you live in a space for a long time, it’s easy to overlook the less obvious dirt that a buyer’s keen eye will notice right away.

Don’t forget:

  • Wash dirty baseboards and trim
  • Dust shelves, light fixtures, and decor
  • Scrub away smudges on walls and cabinets
  • Remove pet hair on furniture
  • Clean or replace carpet
  • Wipe down blinds and shutters

Consider it time for a very deep clean.

Odds n’ Ends

Attention to detail is paramount when making your home market ready. Try walking through your whole house and list the nitpicky to-dos that need attention.

  • Replace burnt-out or mismatched light bulbs
  • Fix or replace cheap or broken fixtures
  • Repair leaky faucets
  • Add a fresh coat of paint to brighten things up
  • Windows, window treatments, and screens should be in good repair
  • All kid and pet paraphernalia should be tucked away and out of site


Many times, your home is at the heart of who you are and all that you love. That said, when your home is about to become someone elses, it’s important that a buyer can envision themselves in your space. Make it as neutral and universally pleasing as possible.

  • Box up family photos, keepsakes, and memorabilia
  • Neutralize by painting over unconventional or bright paint colors
  • Remove nonessential décor and furniture to make rooms appear more spacious
  • Hire a professional staging company

Never underestimate the power of visual impact. Hiring a professional staging company will impact how quickly your house is sold and for how much money. When people enter an aesthetically pleasing environment, they experience a fundamental desire to make it their own.

Don’t Forget The Exterior

A tidy yard packs a powerful punch. Notice we aren’t recommending that you sink loads of money into landscaping. A yard free of debris, trimmed, and de-cluttered will suffice, but don’t forget to sweep the entry way and remove cobwebs.

As you can see, these 5 things to do to prep your home to go to market takes some serious time and elbow grease, but in the end, the results will be worth it!

Tidy up, pare it down, and make it sparkle.

Read now or pin for later. Do these things before listing your home for sale.

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