It’s All About the House Details!


You’re getting ready to sell your house and you’re completely focused on the big items – staging, decluttering, depersonalizing. Sometimes it’s easy to forget about the little house details that can mean a lot. The best advice we give to home sellers is to pretend you want to buy your house – look at it from a buyer’s point-of-view. As they say, the devil is in the details and buyer’s are going to look very closely at every aspect of your home. Even when you’ve kept up with all your mechanicals and decluttered, when a buyer sees even the smallest thing not quite right, they wonder what bigger items might be wrong. It could make all the difference in the offer you receive!

Yes, getting your home ready to sell can be a daunting task. But if you break it down into manageable steps and give yourself plenty time to complete them all (say, the next four weeks), you’ll be done before you know it.

Here’s our guide for how to tackle cleaning your home to sell.

First things first – House Details

There are some tasks that apply to most rooms of the house. These include:

  • Vacuum and wipe down ceilings and walls.
  • Wash or dry clean curtains and window treatments.
  • Dust light fixtures, ceiling fans (this is a big one people forget!) and shelves.
  • Replace light bulbs.
  • Wipe down light switches, door handles and baseboards.
  • Vacuum or mop floors.
  • Wash windows.
  • Change batteries in smoke detectors.
  • Have carpets professionally cleaned or rent a carpet cleaner from Lowe’s or Home Depot.


  • Clean appliances including oven, dishwasher, refrigerator, coffee pot, microwave oven, garbage disposal and toaster.
  • Defrost the freezer.
  • Clean out cabinets and wipe down shelves (people are going to open your cabinet doors during showings).
  • Clean and organize pantry.
  • Disinfect cutting boards and countertops.
  • Clean garbage and recycle bins.

Living Room / Dining Room

  • Vacuum and spot clean upholstered furniture.
  • Unplug and dust all electronics.
  • Clean fireplace.
  • Replace heavy curtains and throws with lighter ones.
  • Clean and wax wood furniture.
  • Launder table linens.
  • Launder throw pillows and blankets.
  • Vacuum lamp shades


  • Rotate mattress and switch to warm season bedding.
  • Wash pillows and mattress pads.
  • Sprinkle baking soda on mattress and vacuum after a few minutes.
  • Organize drawers and closets.
  • Clean lampshades and under bed.
  • Disinfect children’s toys and donate any that children have outgrown.


  • Remove items from medicine cabinet and clean shelves.
  • Discard unused and expired medication.
  • Clean cosmetics and discard any that are unused and expired.
  • Clean hair care tools and accessories.
  • Wipe down toiletries.
  • Clean faucets and remove build-up.
  • Clean drains.
  • Scrub and clean sink and tub.
  • Update first aid supplies.
  • Clean inside and outside of toilet.
  • Clean mirrors.
  • Wash shower curtain or scour shower door.
  • Disinfect countertops and backsplashes.

Laundry Room

  • Wipe down cabinets and countertops.
  • Wipe down the outside of both the washer and dryer.
  • Vacuum and wash lint trap.
  • Clean behind the washer and dryer.
  • Run an empty load of hot water and vinegar through washer.


  • Wipe down all surfaces, including the top of desk.
  • Wipe down computer monitor.
  • Clean keyboard.
  • Disinfect phone and mouse.
  • Organize clutter.
  • Vacuum or wipe down office chair.
  • Shred old papers and organize files.
  • Clean garbage and recycle bins.

Outdoor Areas


Phew! While this list may make you a little anxious, getting a jump start on your pre-listing cleaning will make you feel ready to go when the showings begin. So grab the list, gather your supplies and get to it! Oh! If you need ethical, professional, innovative and caring Realtors to help you with your sale, we would love the opportunity to earn your trust!

Happy House!

Angela, Rick and Genevieve

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