With the Spring Market upon us, I think this is a good time to pass along some tips to sellers. I see many houses on the market for sale, and they all come in different levels of showing condition. It’s a question I get asked all the time, “what should I do to get my home ready to sell?” The answer always is do as much as you can do. Having your home clean and show ready is your best chance of having a quick and profitable sale. You don’t have to dig into renovations, a little goes a long way. So here are my tips for getting your home “show-ready”.

Your Entryway

  • The front entrance is the best place to make a great first impression. A welcoming entry inside and out will do wonders.
  • Keep front porches free from garbage or clutter, add an urn of flowers and be sure to keep it seasonally appropriate.
  • If you don’t have a hall closet use wall hooks or a coat rack, but don’t have it buried in jackets and coats – try to keep it to just a few.
  • Shoes should be placed neatly either on a mat or in a shoe cabinet or closet, again try to avoid having 15 pairs of shoes at the front door.
  • Consider buying an umbrella holder, as spring weather tends to be unpredictable.

The Kitchen

  • Counter tops in the kitchen look best sparse. Dressing them up with a few canisters or leaving out the coffee maker, or toaster are okay.  But when you also have the blender, the espresso machine, the spice rack, the knife block, and all the cook books hiding that beautiful back splash that you spent more time than you’re willing to admit on, it’s just too much.
  • When appliances are included in the purchase, buyers will look in the fridge, stove and dishwasher. A bit of elbow grease will go a long way to please the them.
  • Be sure to move school calendars, appointments cards and fridge magnets off or to the side of the fridge. A clear front decreases clutter and makes the room feel tidier. If you can put them into a drawer for showings, even better.


Spring Market Selling Tip - Reface Kitchen Cabinets and Replace Hardware

The Bathroom

  • A fresh set of hand towels in the bathroom goes a long way for making the room look fresh and clean. Tuck toothbrushes and toothpaste in the medicine cabinet, and makeup and toiletries put away in the vanity.
  • I can’t stress enough to have a clean toilet with the seat down!
  • If the caulking around your bathtub is dingy or mouldy, it’s easy to remove and reapply a fresh bead.
  • Keep the shower neat and tidy when it comes to bath toys and shampoo bottles.
  • If the grout in your bathroom (or kitchen) is looking dull, scrub away at it with a toothbrush and some bleach.

Yard and Exterior

  • Keep exterior maintenance looking maintained, you don’t want buyers to think it’s too much work.
  • Take the time to rake your yard, and trim back any bushes or hedges – especially if they are near the house, to let in more light.
  • Sometimes it’s the little details that can sell your home – so be sure to edge your lawn.
  • Everyone is trying to forget that winter was just here, so consider adding flowers like tulips and daffodils to the front of your house. It’s been said that yellow flowers can stimulate buying urges. Even if that’s not true, yellow flowers give off a great spring vibe.
  • Driveway looking grey and cracked? Consider resealing it, to capture buyers’ attention.


Spring Market Selling Tip - Clean Your Windows

The Rest of Your House

  • Pack away any items that clutter the house that you won’t need until you settle into your new home. Neatly stack these boxes or storage containers in the basement, garage or move to a storage unit. This is especially true with bulky winter clothing, and will help to show more space.
  • Replace any burnt out lights. A chandelier or multi light fixture should have working light bulbs in every socket.
  • Often baseboards get dusty or dingy and can have chipped or scuffed paint. A magic eraser and some touch up paint go a long way.
  • If carpets are dirty or dingy in high traffic areas have them professionally cleaned, it’s more inexpensive than people think, or rent the machine for a day and D-I-Y.
  • Keep shelving in living areas looking useful, but organized. Stack books neatly, add a nice basket to house paperwork or unattractive items. Place some decorative objects on the shelves to make it more of a focal point and not entirely utilitarian.
  • Children’s toys are not a problem if they are well contained. Keep toys neatly gathered in a corner of the living room if that is where it’s practical for you to have them. Baskets and bins are great for concealing the toys and allowing them to blend in with your decor.
  • Beds should be made with care. Make sure that the bed skirt is pulled down all around the bed, sheets are tucked in and comforter or duvet laying flat and even on the bed. Neatly place the pillows and add a throw pillow or two if you have something. Coordinating linens are the most important aspect of staging a bedroom.
  • If there are items that don’t need to be on display but that you need handy tuck them in a drawer for showings.



BEST TIP: When in doubt, Pinterest works wonders for providing inspiration and hacks for all things when it comes to staging!

Above all else, keep in mind that when people move they are usually moving to something nicer than what they currently have, even when people downsize they are not looking to downsize on quality. A well-presented home feeds into the lifestyle they want to have!

If the thought of doing all of this on your own is daunting, and you’re looking for painters, stagers, professional cleaners, or any other service to help sell your home, let me know in the comments, and I can recommend the best businesses and professionals in Peterborough for you.


Signing off from the Electric City,

Linz Hunt


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