Monday, April 27, 2015

Selling Your Home: 5 Tips to Keep Your Home in Showing Condition

You know the drill. You haven’t had a showing in a few days, and then, just when you are racing out the door to get to work, while you are juggling backpacks and herding kids into the car, you get that call. A friendly agent wants to show your home in 20 minutes.

 If you get into the habit of doing a few simple things every day, that call won’t throw you into a tailspin. Instead, you’ll be able to wish the agent a successful showing and head out the door.

No notice? No problem. Here’s how:

  • Allow your listing agent to put a lockbox on your door. If agents don’t have to make an appointment to show your home, they are more likely to show it. And selling is the priority. The sooner your home goes under contract, the faster you can go back to sub-showing-condition living.
  • Pick up before you go to bed. Spend about 10 minutes every night (after the kids have gone to bed), picking up toys, clothes…whatever clutter has accumulated during the day. The before-bed check should include taking out the recycling and putting away homework, mail and other paper that lands on the counter.
  • Put dirty dishes in the dishwasher after every single use. Dishes create clutter.  And if everyone gets in the habit of putting them away after every use, you will have one less thing to check before you leave. And who knows, maybe this will become a habit for your kids and spouse.
  • Make a 5-minute sweep before you leave in the morning.  This circuit should include opening blinds to let in the light and checking bathrooms to make sure toilets are flushed. Consider strapping the kids in the car and putting the dog in the kennel before you do the last-minute check. It is much more efficient this way.
  • Empower your people. Put each family member in charge of certain tasks or certain areas. Kids can make the bathroom rounds in the morning or be in charge of collecting laundry every night. Bribes, I mean rewards, are always effective. Set up a simple system the kids can track (one less thing for you to do).