Get Your Home Ready to Sell


As a “For Sale by Owner” you must first clean up and clean out, before you can invite prospects in to admire your home!

By far the biggest dread that people have with regards to selling their homes and moving is the massive cleaning project they have to deal with.

The first thing that a real estate agent will say after listing your home will be, "You will have to give your home a thorough clean up", but they won,t give you any specific instructions on the process.

Here at “For Sale by Owner . . .Plus” you don’t need to dread clean up and moving. Not if you have a plan!

To make your plan work you will need lots of resolve and a thorough understanding or the “FIVE ITS”

Use it - Store it - Sell it - Donate it - or Toss it

This is where the resolve comes in, because for every item in your home you are going to have to decide:

Do I “use it”? - which means you will need it during your home selling process.

Shall I “store it”? - things that you rarely use, but just can’t bare to part with.

Can I “sell it”? - items you don’t need that someone else will pay for at a garage sale.

Do I “donate it”? - items you don’t need and can‘t sell, but someone could use.

Or finally, do I “toss it”? - none of the above!

Before you can begin.

1) - Stop by the grocery store for boxes. If you can find them in produce, empty banana boxes are great. They are big, sturdy and have handles. Moving companies and trailer rental companies like U-Haul will also sell you a variety of sizes of boxes. Whether you buy them or scrounge them, get plenty. You can never have too many boxes.

2) - You need several rolls of masking tape. These are often sold in 5 or 6 roll packs. Get one of these. You will be labeling every box as to it‘s contents, as well as securely taping it closed.

3) - You will also need some “wide point” felt tip markers.

One other point before we begin.

Your clean up, clean out project has two purposes. Clean up being the first, but nearly as important is:

Make your rooms and closets look bigger and roomier by cleaning out and removing all the excess clutter.

Now let’s begin your Clean Up - Clean Out project.

How do you accomplish this?

Let’s clean up your bedroom closet as an example, keeping mind the five “its”.

Use it - Store it - Sell it - Donate it - or Toss it

Let’s do your clothes first. Separate them into seasonal items, then go through them one at a time.

Now here’s the tough part!

Decide whether you use the garment at all. If not, then, either:
“store it” - (pack for moving)
“sell it” - (garage sell),
“donate it” - (thrift store),
“toss it” - (garbage can).
If you’ve “used it” recently, or will “use it” in the next few weeks, put it back in the closet.

“Store it” items go right into a box. When full, tape them up and mark them with an eventual destination and contents. In this example: “Master bedroom closet - My winter outfits.”

All other things put into their respective “sell it”, “donate it” or “toss it” piles. You don’t need to box these items as yet. You will eventually be moving the piles, but for now just watch them grow as your closet gets bigger and roomier.

When you’re done with this vacuum the closet floor and dust the shelves before moving on.

Next you want to clean up and clean out your cabinets, dressers, chests, armoires, night stands, etc., removing any items that go into any of your respective piles.

This may not seem necessary at first glance, since your potential buyer isn’t going to be looking through your furnishings. However, you do need to remember that you will soon be moving, and this clean up process will eventually have to be done anyway. Let’s do it now and get it out of the way.

While we’re on the topic of furnishings.

Do you have any items that aren’t being used and aren’t needed in your next home? Make your room look bigger and roomier by removing them now. Are they “toss it”, “sell it” or “donate it” items?

Another point.

Lots of light will make a room seem
spacious and more inviting.

Tie back the drapes and give all windows a good cleaning. If necessary, change the light bulbs to a higher wattage. You’ll be surprised how much difference brightening up your home will make.

By now you’re probably getting an idea of the big picture.

Continue doing your clean up and clean out throughout every closet, storage area, and room in your home.

Once done you will be amazed how much stuff your home has accumulated over the years.

Now let’s do something with all that clutter.

1) - First, put the “toss it” items in the garbage.

2) - Then take the “donate it” pile to the thrift store or call Goodwill for a pick up.

3) - Next you will need to gather up all of your “sell it” items and put them in the garage for your garage sale.

4) - Neatly stack your labeled “store it” boxes in the attic, basement or storage room. If you don’t have room for them you may want to think about getting a storage unit.

5) - Now you can plan a Garage Sale.

After your FSBO Clean Up - Clean Out project is completed, you will only have the “use it” and “store it" items left to deal with when you move.

See how a little organization and pre-planning while cleaning up your home for showing will make moving day go much more smoothly.

Helter-skelter is not the order of the day, unless you are into stress and frustration. You’ll get enough of this by accident without creating it yourself.