5 steps to prepare your home for sale


When you are selling your home you need to take some time to prepare it for sale. It’s not as complicated as you might think, but it does take some time and effort.

Why not just sell it the way it is? Two reasons

1- It will look ready to move in, show better and appeal to more buyers. That will in turn make it sell faster and give you better offers.

2- By preparing your house for sale you get a head start on your packing and it will be easier when you move, It’s also less work to keep it clean while your home is on the market.

 Here are 5 steps to prepare your house for sale

1- De-clutter

  • pack up personal pictures, collectables,  knick-knaks,
  • most of your kids toys. This is a great time to get them involved, donate toys and clothes they have outgrown. tell them they can keep one basket of their favorite things and the rest pack for storage
  • extra dishes you don’t use and small appliances that just clutter your counter top.
  • now is the time to pack grandmas china collection, your album collection etc.
  • Clothes you will not need for the next couple of months. all those extra shoes you never use.
  • books, magazines.
  • religious paintings, wall art or ornaments.
  • If you have too much furniture, donate anything you don’t wish to take to your new home. Throw out broken items, if you still have too much store it off site. Too much furniture will make your house look cramped, buyers will think there is no room for their furniture.
  • Declutter your garage. read this
  • organize linen closet, only keep a weeks worth of linens.
  • pack your home office if you have one. organize you children’s school papers.                 6 steps to organize your kids school papers
  • remove heavy curtains that block out sunlight
  • remove extra coats and shoes from entrance closet.

2- Repair

  • repair walls and paint in a neutral colour
  • replace broken window screens, door knobs, door bell. light fixtures and switches.
  • replace light bulbs.
  • if wood floors look worn out. refinish them.
  • Replace worn out carpet and broken tiles
  • check calking in bath tubs and showers, repair if needed
  • make sure all appliances are working, if not repair or replace. (New appliances will make a dated kitchen look better)
  • have an inspection done on your furnace, water heater and air conditioner. mention to your agent these have been inspected and are in good working order. buyers will feel better, specially if your house is older.
  • if you have really old toilets (in weird colours) replace them, they are not very expensive.
  • Give your front door and garage door a fresh coat of paint in an appealing colour, also check window frames and paint if needed.
  • if light fixture are dated or they are the builder grade, replace them with more modern ones ( you can find these in all price points at building stores).

3-  clean, clean, then clean again.

Apart from cleaning the obvious, do deep cleaning like you have never cleaned before.  If you are not able to do it yourself, hire a cleaning service to do the deep cleaning. Then be sure to maintain it while your house is on the market.  Nothing turns buyers off more than other peoples dirt.

  • bathrooms should be spotless! clean tub, tiles, shower doors , baseboards, the fan that is on the ceiling, inside cabinets. replace the shower curtain and bath mat.
  • kitchens sell houses so make this spotless. clean oven, microwave, toaster oven, fridge inside and out, remove everything from the sides and door( magnets, business cards etc..)
  • organize cupboards and pantry.   pots and pans. This should be easier now that you decluttered.
  • clean hood fan and ceiling fixtures, curtains or blinds, baseboards, walls, floors, cabinet doors, counters, back splash.
  • wipe all door knobs, door handles wash walls and doors.
  • dust furniture, shelves.
  • shampoo carpets, mop floors
  • air return crates
  • mirrors
  • windows should have a good washing inside and out.
  • clean the front door, garage door , it’s amazing how much dirt and dust collects over time. Use a power washer with a little soap.
Lovely front door stage.  Freshly painted door.  Lovely door knocker & door numbers.  Nice lights.  Beautiful topiaries.  My only suggestion would be to add a more substantial front matt. So inviting!
lovely front door from Melissa @ 360sycamoreblog.com

4- curb appeal

  • repair or paint your driveway if it looks worn out or needs replacing.
  • check the roof, do any repairs if needed
  • trim trees and over grown plants and bushes, Make sure you have a clear path to the front door
  • the house number should be easy to see from the road
  • cut the grass and trim the edges, refresh mulch if you have it
  • pull weeds
  • if it’s spring or summer plant some colorful flowers or add potted plants by the front door
  • if it’s winter, keep driveways and sidewalks shoveled
  • clean decks or patios
  • add a new door handle
  • remove any garbage or debris around the house
  • keep garbage bins neat, and not near the front ( hide them as much as possible )
  • same for bikes and kids toys
  • do not store anything in your driveway ( your boat, trailer, your brothers old car…)
  • touch up paint where needed.
  • remove lawn ornaments
  • add lighting to your walk way.  Make sure you can see the house number at night, agents might be showing your home at night.


5- Stage it!

Staging is the packaging, it gives buyers and idea of how they could live in your house.


  • this is the first room they see, so it has to make a good first impression.
  • pack away out of season Items, so the closet will look spacious.
  • keep it neat,
  • hang art or a mirror to make it appear larger
  • if there is space, add a small table, or shelve where you can add a vase with flowers and a little tray for keys.

A weathered old table from Michael Trapp anchors a wall in the central hall.


bedrooms–  after decluttering and cleaning

  • The bed is the focal point, so dress it with a nice duvet , shams and pillows. use a throw at the feet of the bed to add some color.
  • hang drapes all the way to the ceiling, to make the windows look larger.
  • have 2 tables on either side of the bed with reading lamps.
  • if the room is small don’t clutter it with furniture.
  • make sure there is nothing blocking doors, windows or closets. it should look roomy when you walk in.Our Gray Guest Bedroom and a Full Source List by Dear Lillie- in love the grey and white look


  • Use fresh luxurious looking towels, if your towels are worn invest in some new thick ones you can bring to your new house
  • add some art and flowers for color
  • remove any toilet lid covers or rugs
  • give it a spa feeling with bath salts and glass jars029
    stage with style


Family room/living room

  • make sure the furniture fits the room. and it’s not too crowded
  • keep it neat and tidy
  • remove personal photos.
  • you can display a magazine, vases or flowers on the table, and maybe some nice pillows on the sofa.Sunny Side Up (family room decor update - pops of coral!)


  • display a bowl of fresh fruit on the counter or the table or a vase with fresh flowers
  • you can add color with artwork
  • keep paint, curtains or blinds in a neutral color
  • make sure the kitchen table is not too large for the room, so people can walk around it.
  • if you don’t have a table but there is room, add one to show buyers you have an eat- in kitchen

Make the most of your kitchen space with a cozy breakfast nook: http://www.bhg.com/kitchen/eat-in-kitchen/breakfast-nook-ideas/?socsrc=bhgpin042514breakfastnook

  • A Modern Look
    better home and garden

    Install Beaded Board
    pinned from better home and garden


Dinning room

  • you should have a table and chairs that are to scale of the room
  • remove extra leaves or chairs if it’s too crowded
  • no table cloth or doilies
  • just a nice vase with fresh flowers, or some decorative items , such as candles in groupings of three
  • Chandelier should be hung properly. if it’s very dated consider replacing it.
  • have some art on the walls for a splash of color.
dinning room from younghouselove.com

If you have strange corner in the house, display a little vignette, like a chair and small table, is now a reading area.

Don’t leave empty rooms, if you have a spare bedroom , stage it as an office or extra bedroom.

a cozy, well-decorated reading nook with an arm chair, side table, abstract art and floor lamp

Home Office Makeover Reveal

If you need more ideas specific to your home, in the Brampton, Peel or GTA.  Please call Stage with Style. We will be more than happy to help you stage your home for sale.

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinrssyoutubeinstagramby feather
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *