In our blog article yesterday, I talked to an employee of mine who is currently selling her home. While she doesn’t live near here, she is like many clients I have represented over the years who find themselves trying to keep a clean home 24/7 while their Windsor property is listed. You just never know when a buyer will want to see your property, so you must always be ready for that phone call for a sudden, unexpected appointment.
And of course, it’s always difficult to keep a house clean and clutter free when you have small children. It’s almost like trying to nail jello to a wall. It can be frustrating and time-consuming.
But don’t despair. With a little organization and some new products that are available to make cleaning easier, your home can be ready for those last-minute showings. Here’s our advice:
Best New Discoveries and Cleaning Methods:
1. Magic Erasers.
If you haven’t picked one up at your local grocery or hardware store, these cleaners that look like sponges, are perfect for wiping away smudges on walls or splatters on kitchen cabinets. They truly clean most everything and are simply remarkable for getting rid of handprints and dirt on doors, cleaning baseboards or anything else that needs a quick polish.
After every shower, use a shower spray that gets rid of soap scum and prevents buildup. There are several available, but we like the ones that you simply spray on the glass and that’s it. Within a few days, you will notice that soap scum is no longer a problem. It also smells great. No more hard cleaning.
Oven spills can be difficult to remove and worse, leave odors and smoke. If you have time, run your oven through a self-cleaning cycle, however, if you are unable to do this, focus on truly the worst stains by using a metal spatula to get rid of any loose food particles. You can also cover the stain with ammonia by using a spray bottle and let it sit for five minutes. Then simply sprinkle on baking soda to cover the stain and add a few drops of white vinegar and let it bubble. Get rid of the grime with a sponge and rinse with a clean sponge and water.
The glass on stoves also becomes caked with baked on film. Again, using the same full strength ammonia, spray on the glass and let it soak. A few minutes later rub down the glass non abrasive scrubbing pad. Rinse with wet sponge and dry.
Easy and quick! And take my word for it, buyers do look inside the ovens.
4. Garbage Disposal:
Walking into a kitchen that smells is a huge turn-off to buyers. With garbage disposals, the enemy is left over food scraps. This is an easy fix and should be done at the end of every day if your home is on the market. Simply clean the disposal blades by putting ice from your freezer into disposal and letting them grind throughly. Pour in 1/2 cup of baking soda while running with warm water. Odors will be gone and your kitchen will smell fresh!
Have you ever looked at your couch just before getting ready for visitors and you notice pet hair? Chances are, if you have a large sitting area, a lint roller won’t help. We recommend putting on a pair of clean, rubber gloves and running your hands over the arms, back and seat of furniture. You will gather the fur and all you have to do is toss it when it balls up. Applying a Static Guard to furniture also makes cleaning up pet hair much easier.
I know that some pet owners don’t like this, but when selling your home, don’t allow animals on your furniture if at all possible. Not only will the hair be obvious and distracting for a buyer, but pet odors can be a problem as well. And always hide kitty litter boxes prior to a showing.
When showing your property, the kitchen is usually the most popular room and where buyers will spend the longest time. They will examine every nook and cranny. If you have built-in appliances, like a microwave, they will inspect that as well. Therefore you can understand if a buyer looks inside and sees a spaghetti sauce explosion inside your microwave. The good news? You don’t have to spend lots of time cleaning. Heat a cup of water in a microwave safe bowl on high for five minutes. The steam should make any mess easier to clean. Simply wipe away with a sponge.
Tomorrow, we will discuss how to make showing your home with small children an easier process.