Before you put your home on the market for sale you need to stop and think: Is my home ready to be plastered all over the internet for anyone,anywhere in the world to see? Because that’s what will happen if you list with a good Realtor.

There are things you can do to encourage a quick sale of your home without breaking the bank. It’s amazing what a little paint, elbow grease, and staging can do. As you prep your home you need to think about making your home appeal to the most amount of potentials Buyers as possible. Also think about why a Buyer would want to choose your home over other homes on the market. I highly suggest having a Realtor walk through your home and make suggestions for staging, repairs, repainting, curb appeal, etc. Realtors know how to look at houses through the eyes of a Buyer and know what the typical home Buyer expects at certain price points.

Prepping your home for sale can be quite overwhelming and it will take time and energy. My suggestion is to tackle the job one room at a time and stay focused on the ultimate goal of making your home appeal to the most amount of potential Buyers as possible.

Here is my handy checklist for prepping your home for a quick sale:

Throughout the house:

  • Remove clutter from each room to visually enlarge them.
  • If you have a fireplace, highlight it in your decorating.
  • Shampoo all carpets. Replace the carpet if it does not clean up well.
  • Have a family “game plan” to get the home in order quickly if necessary.
  • Put family photos in storage.
  • Improve traffic flow through every room by removing unnecessary furniture.
  • Create the feeling of a spacious entry area by using decorative accents and removing unnecessary furniture.
  • Putty over and paint any nail holes or other mishaps in the walls.
  • Paint all interior walls a light neutral color to brighten the home and make it look bigger.
  • Paints ceilings white if needed.
  • Repair or replace any loose or damaged wallpaper (even better to remove all wallpaper and paint a light neutral color).
  • Clean all light bulbs and light fixtures to brighten the home. Replace burnt out bulbs.
  • Wash all windows inside and out.
  • Use plants in transitional areas of your home.
  • Make the most of your attic’s potential.
  • Remove and/or hide excess cords and exposed wires.
  • Clean and organize cabinets and closets.
  • Remove all smoke and pet odors.
  • Repair or replace banisters and handrails.
  • Hide pet accessories.
  • Open the draperies, pull the shades, and let in the sunlight.
  • Create a positive mood. Turn on all lights, day or night, and install higher wattage light bulbs to show your home brightly.
  • Open doors to areas you want potential buyers to see such as walk-in closets, pantries, attics, etc.
  • Keep your home dusted and vacuumed at all times.
  • Air out your home for one-half hour before showings, if possible.

In the Kitchen:

  • Expand your counter space by removing any small appliances.
  • Repair all plumbing leaks, including faucets and drain traps.
  • Microwave a small dish of vanilla twenty minutes before a showing and place it in an out-of-the-way place.
  • Highlight an eat-in kitchen in your kitchen with a table set for dinner.
  • The kitchen and bathrooms should always be spotlessly clean.

In the Bedrooms:

  • Create a master suite effect in your decorating.
  • Depersonalize bedrooms and decorate in a neutral scheme.
  • Organize your closets, remove unnecessary items and put them in storage.
  • Make sure that the beds are made and the linens are clean.

In the Bathrooms:

  • Re-caulk the tub if the caulk is not sparkling white.
  • Repair or replace broken tiles in the shower/tub.
  • Replace shower curtains and keep them clean.
  • Repair all plumbing leaks, including faucets and drain traps.
  • Do not leave towels around and wipe down the sink and shower areas after each use.
  • Put out fresh white towels and decorative soaps.


  • Use flowering plants to dress up the yard, walkway, and patio.
  • Weed and apply fresh mulch to garden beds.
  • Remove all toys, bicycles, tools, unsightly patio furniture, and trash from the yard.
  • Porches, steps, verandas, balconies, patios, and other extensions of the house should be kept uncluttered, swept, and in good condition.
  • Paint all entrance doors and wood fences.
  • Make sure the garage door opens easily. Fix and paint the garage door if necessary.
  • Clean and shine all hardware and accessories indoors and out (door knobs, knockers, lamps, mail box, address numbers, etc.)
  • Trees and shrubs should be trimmed and pruned.
  • Wash or paint home’s exterior.
  • Use a new doormat.
  • Be sure the front doorbell is in good working order.
  • Be sure the front door and screen door works perfectly.
  • Be sure gutters and downspouts are firmly attached.
  • Keep the yard mowed and raked at all times.
  • During the winter be sure driveway and all walkways are cleared of snow and ice.

Bottom line: Before you put your home on the market be sure you prep it for a quick sale. Make it appeal to the most amount of potential Buyers as possible.

Please contact me if you are thinking about selling your home:

Stacy Kurtz, Realtor

Keller Williams Realty