Cleaning your home on a regular day can be a tough undertaking, so preparing your home for an open house can seem downright impossible. However, if you intend to sell your home quickly and at a good price, learning how to stage it can give you the best chance at success.

How to Clean Your Home for Potential Buyers

Declutter. The first thing you must do is get rid of as much clutter as you can. Not only will it make your home more appealing to buyers, but it will also make surfaces more accessible for cleaning. Go through all of your belongings, and throw out, donate, or pack up anything that does not absolutely need to remain in the house. Keep day-to-day essentials well organized and stored away. All counter space should be as empty as possible, and few—if any—personal items should be in sight.

Clean your flooring. Carpets may have stains or odors that would be off-putting to prospective buyers, so be sure to get a thorough carpet cleaning. If you have pets, this is especially important since many people have allergies. Pay attention to tile and wood as well; get them as clean as you can, and if possible, repair any imperfections, such as scratches or stained grout.

Dust and wipe down every surface. Every single surface in your home should be as shiny and spotless as possible. Go through each room, and wipe down anything that can accumulate dust. Remember to get hard-to-reach areas as well as blinds and ceiling fans.

Organize cabinets, pantries, and closets. Buyers will likely be interested in how much storage space your home will offer them, so you should assume they will peek into every drawer and cabinet. You do not want any of your storage spaces to be disorganized or overly full because this can make it seem as if your home lacks sufficient storage options.

Hide cords. The areas around desks and entertainment centers have a tendency to become overloaded with cords from electronics. Take a second to detangle and organize the cords, and figure out how to store them as discreetly as possible.

Remove personal photographs. Experts advise removing all personal photographs and any over-the-top artwork. Keep all decor as minimalistic and neutral as possible because you want potential buyers to be able to visualize your home as a blank slate that can be filled in according to their own taste.

Rearrange furniture to create open space. By changing your furniture formation, you can really open up a room. You want to make your home seem as spacious as you can when trying to appeal to others.

Wash the windows and exterior. Remember that your home’s exterior is the first thing buyers will see. Even if you’ve staged your home’s interior to perfection, no one will get to see it if the exterior deters buyers from walking in the door. Clean the windows, front door, siding, gutters, and roofing as necessary.

Don’t forget your yard. Along with washing your home’s exterior, make sure that you straighten up the yard. Mow the lawn, trim overgrown trees and shrubs, clean your pool, and replace your mailbox if it’s in poor condition. Also, remember to keep porches, decks, patios, and walkways well swept.

By putting in the proper time and effort to make over your home for an open house, you are increasing the likelihood of a quick and successful home sale. A little hard work up front can help you avoid a long and stressful selling process.

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Sources: HGTV;; U.S. News & World Report.