15 Easy Ways to Prep Your House for a Sale

Use this handy checklist to help find a buyer when your house is going on the market.
Related To:

Sabrina Soto, home-staging expert and host of HGTV's Get It Sold, shares her tips on what to do before putting a house on the market. Print out this handy checklist.

  • Use "home wash" (a hose attachment that is available at any home improvement store) to clean the outside of the house.
  • Clean rain gutters as well as outside windows and screens.
  • Make sure the front door is inviting. Paint it if needed. Also, replace any outdated exterior lighting fixtures.
  • Buy new house numbers if the old ones are dated or faded. Be sure buyers can see the new ones from the curb.
  • Buy a new welcome mat.
  • Eliminate half of your belongings - clutter can cost you a sale. Rent a storage unit or portable pod for extraneous pieces of furniture or knickknacks. Another idea is to ask a friend if you can borrow some space in his or her garage.
  • Organize all closets and drawers. Buyers might look there.
  • Make any necessary repairs so that buyers don't have to add that to their mental list of post-purchase expenses.
  • Rearrange furniture to make rooms appear as large as possible.
  • Make every surface shine, from ceiling fans to baseboards. Don't forget interior windows, mirrors and floors.
  • Scrub every inch of the kitchen and bathrooms.
  • Depersonalize each room, removing photo frames and posters or artwork.
  • Buy new linens and pillows if necessary. Be certain they are a neutral color.
  • Buy air neutralizer and spray it often.
  • Let go emotionally of your home, and get ready for an offer!

Next Up

10 Ways to Prep Your Home for Sale

Make your home stand out with a few easy improvements.

HGTV's Top 10 Ways to Beat the Sluggish Housing Market

Don't let the slow market get you down. Whether you're a home seller looking for offers or a homebuyer facing stricter loan requirements, rev up your real estate potential with these helpful tips.

Real Estate Survival Guide: Seller's Checklist

Refer to this 10-step checklist to get you through the home-selling process.

How Soon Can I Sell My Home?

Is flipping your house a good idea? Here's what you need to know.

Annual Expenses of Homeownership

Which areas of your home need yearly maintenance? Here's the rundown.

Seven Tips for a Fast, Easy Move

Settle in quickly with these pointers from a professional mover.

Little Houses, Big Ideas

Itty-bitty homes and eco-friendly ideas go hand in hand.

The Red Flags of Mortgage Fraud

With mortgage brokers like these, you don’t need enemies. Know how to protect yourself from a scam.

How to Take Title When Buying With Friends

When buying a house with a friend, it's important to choose a joint tenancy title that protects you from the unforeseen. Here are your best options.

Building Mortgage Interest: More Tax Deductions and Incentives for Homeowners

Learn about the many tax advantages of homeownership, including special deductions and local incentives.