Do These Things Before Putting Your Home on the Market
Your deep cleaning checklist will help you clean your house to sell. It will help you in remembering important details and, more importantly, in paying attention to situations that are frequently overlooked. If you’re ready to clean your house, begin with the larger jobs first.
The big things
A big part of learning how to clean your house to sell is knowing what the most important parts of your home to clean might be. These are the places and things in your home that are easiest for prospective buyers to spot. If they’re dirty, you can lose a sale. As such, you’ll want to pay special attention to cleaning the following areas.
11 Cleaning Tips Before Selling Your Home
The fridge, dishwasher, and oven
These are bigger than you think. While you might be used to how your appliances look and smell, new buyers are going to view them with fresh eyes. You’ll want to make sure they are all cleaned inside and out. There are special products for cleaning out ovens and dishwashers, so invest in those. Make sure that your fridge is emptied and that you’ve cleaned out every shelf and drawer. Put in some extra effort to make sure that each of these major appliances shines.
The bathtubs, sinks, and toilets
You already know that these are high-traffic areas, so make sure to take care of them appropriately. You’ll need to spend some serious time scrubbing here, removing every stain and bit of stray dirt. Make sure to pay extra attention to both the sinks and bathtubs, as they’re very easy for even casual observers to look into. These are areas in which a little extra effort can go a long way. Empty the garbage cans, no one wants to see trash when viewing a home.
Glass and mirrors
The goal here is to eliminate all of the streaks and smudges that you can find. Use a good glass cleaner and make sure to leave any glass surfaces as clear as possible. Good mirrors help to make rooms look larger, so you’ll want to make sure that they are clean and that they reflect the light well. Glass should be dusted as well, because dust particles can make your entire property appear dingier than it should.
Walls and counters
Your walls and counters have a few different issues that need to be addressed. First and foremost are the basic marks that have accumulated over the years – a good scrubbing should get rid of most, but don’t be afraid to invest in a special cleaner if you can’t get them out. More urgent is any damage to the walls or countertops, which may require fresh paint or even putty to repair. Make sure that these areas look as close to new as possible.
Floors and baseboards
Your floors are the easiest area to see in your home. If they aren’t cleaned correctly, the remainder of your house will appear dirty. Clean any carpets you have and any cleansers you have on hand for your hardwood floors. In some cases, you may need to invest in scratch removal equipment. In order to achieve the greatest results, vacuum and then clean your baseboards by hand.
The little things
In addition to the big items, figuring out how to clean your house to sell requires being able to identify the most important little things in your house. These items might not seem like they’d cause problems, but they’re things at which most serious buyers will look before they put in an offer on a home.
All of your light fixtures need to be deep cleaned before you move out. This is a multi-part task, so be prepared to put in a little work. Start by removing the lightbulbs so that you can replace if necessary. Next, you’ll want to clean out the inside and outside of the fixtures with a microfiber cloth. Finally, finish by removing any stains and using glass cleaner if necessary. Once you’re done, you can replace the bulbs and you should have not only cleaner fixtures but also much brighter lights.
Your switch plates tend to accumulate a lot of wear and tear over time. Not only are you constantly switching lights on and off, but you’re also constantly touching the plates without noticing what’s on your hands. It’s very important to examine each individual plate in order to determine exactly how much work you’ll need to do. The majority of disinfection wipes will sufficient, however scratched wipes may need to be replaced. Don’t be afraid to remove the plates in order to make sure that they are clean, as there can often be a fair bit of build-up around the edges of the plates.
Vents and fan blades
When was the last time you really looked at your vents and fan blades? You may have dusted from time to time, but there are sections of the house that are frequently overlooked. Remove your vent covers and clean them both inside and out to get rid of any dust that has gathered. Remove each individual fan blade and clean it down if at all feasible. To truly make the fan sparkle, make sure you clean the portions that are normally hidden by any lighting fixtures as well.
Much like your switch plates, your home’s hardware gets a lot of wear and tear that you probably haven’t noticed over the years. At a basic level, you’re looking to get rid of fingerprints and the kind of random dirt that accumulates over the years. If your hardware is metal, though, you’re going to want to use metal cleaner in order to restore it to its original look. You’re not just dealing with wear and tear here, but very real environmental damage. You’ll need to use a little elbow grease to get the best results and make the hardware look pristine.
Your window sills are another area that tends to attract quite a bit of dirt and grime. Unfortunately, most people tend to clean these areas with a light dusting, trusting that most visitors won’t give them a second glance. When buyers come to your home, though, they’ll use your windowsill as a test to see how well you have actually cleaned your home. It’s best to wipe down and eliminate any stains rather than merely dusting these areas. If possible, you may also want to give them a quick coat of paint in order to make them look like new.
The Bottom Line
Buyers can make a decision within seconds a few from the curb, and a few when they step inside the front door. Make those seconds count with a great agent, spruced-up house, and strong financial offer.
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