Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Tuesday Tips and Tricks To Living In a House On The Market

The learning curve is steep and fast when it comes to living in a home that is on the market. The first day my house was on the market we had a call for a showing, the agent would be here in 30 minutes. Even though we requested an hour buffer for showings, I wasn't going to say no to someone wanting to come into our home. So I had to move quickly.

I've learned lots of things about having a show ready house in ten short days, some of them are tricks that I am going to share with you.

As I was making my bed, there was a towel that was used in the morning hanging over the footboard. I just took the towel, that we would reuse one more time and put it on top of my pillows and simply made my bed over it. Voile, what towel?

Now my trick isn't to store towels under your comforter all day, but rather be open to what works in a pinch. What space is usable and valuable to get the space clear of random clutter?

Which leads me to the next photo. Never have I used the underside of my bed to store things or hide things. Big mistake! That space is valuable. When showing your house, closets need to look empty or 1/2 empty anyway, so you can't just throw your stuff in there out of sight. Bank on the fact that people looking at your home WILL open closets, so keep them on the light side and organized. Instead, stuff things in bins under your bed. Or in my case, unfolded fresh laundry and a few random toys happily stored under my bed in that 30 minute window. For the record, I do use a dust ruffle.

We have an electric range and with that comes drip trays. I can't tell you the countless hours I've spent over the years trying to keep our drip trays neat and clean. It's impossible. Food gets baked on and unless you have a strong love for scrubbing, it's not really worth the time. Instead I bought a set of new drip trays at a big box hardware store for $12, we put them in when we have showings or an open house. Just remember to put the old ones back before you cook again!

*Dishes, if you need to clear your sink quickly (30 mins window to get whole house done) and your dishwasher is full of clean dishes, just empty the bottom tray. Load your dirty dishes into the bottom, that way if any of them drip it will just be into the dishwasher and not onto clean dishes. Empty the top shelf when you return home!

**Laundry, out of sight is the motto?! I am never 100% caught up on laundry, it's just impossible. I store hampers inside the closet, I place dirty laundry in the washing machine if it has collected in a pile to be washed, but isn't completed yet. I have even placed a folded load of laundry from on top of my dryer into the dryer. Yes, folded clothes placed inside! I've also heard of people taking their dirty laundry in a basket in the car with them when they leave for a showing.

***Mulch, make it your landscaping friend. Have a section of your yard that has unsightly weed piles, rocks, maybe excess dirt from a landscaping project? Use mulch to cover the area, it adds color and makes everything look neat. I even use it in my flower beds out front to help freshen up the areas where plants don't easily grow (under the roof soffit).

Those are some of my tips and tricks. Have you recently sold your house and have some ideas you'd like to share, please feel free to leave your trick in a comment! I can use all the help I can get.


  1. I was lucky and we'd moved out by the time our house went on the market.

    Great tips!

  2. hahah our house is on the market right now and i have 2 young kids. fun stuff. i have hid my pjs under the covers...things have gone behind couches. i like your laundry tips - i have resorted to throwing all the junk/crap in tote bags and then they come in the car with me. easy breezy huh ??? now pray my house sells b/c we found a house we love and they took our offer, but it is contingent on us selling.

  3. I find myself having to declutter a lot when dates come over to my house. Mess? What mess? Oh, you mean all the crap hiding under the bed and couch? Um... Haha. Great post

  4. Great tips! One thing I regret is getting a bed with a profile so low that I can't hide anything under it!! GRRR!


I always appreciate the gesture to stop and take a moment to comment. Thank you!