You Still Live There!

Showing your house when it’s for sale is an important job, and it means money in your pocket. Just because your home is for sale, remember that you may not move out immediately. Depending on the market, it can take months. We hope it will sell quickly. There are ways to maximize your profits and increase your sale-ability.  

Most people stay in their homes until it sells, and they’ve found a new one. In the current housing market, you have more choices, but you still want it sold fast so that you can stop cleaning it and start packing! Make a list and get to work. 

Step 1. You want to get your home looking the best it can so you can get the most money for it, and it will sell faster. See our blog on Increasing Your Homes’ Value.

Step 2. Maintenance – Once your home is in order, photographs and video may be taken. Now, showing your house begins. You want to be ready for “spur of the moment” showings as well as planned ones.

Your goal should be to have the house in “showing condition” every morning. Presentation of your home can be your responsibility, or the family can share in it. We suggest that you make it a family project. Consider giving the kids an incentive – the price of a TV or bicycle is minimal compared to your stress relief.

Getting Tips To Stage Your Home Online

Everyone looks online for tips to get your home ready to sell. Keep in mind that showing your house when you live there is a whole other story. Most homes used in articles are model homes or vacant houses staged by a decorator. Look at the pictures! There’s rarely even a TV in most photos! Who lives without a TV?

So, where do you compromise? Showing your house should be done during the day. Allow showings until dinner cooking begins. Then enjoy your home until morning, straighten it, and have a good day at work and school. Avoiding morning stress is the ultimate goal. 

Selling a home for top dollar can be stressful, so be kind to yourself. Know that showing your house is a financial investment of time. Don’t hesitate to hire a weekly or bi-weekly housekeeper. Laundry needs to be washed and put away all in one night. If your home-selling competition is brand new homes, your home needs to look great to sell it for the price you want.showing your house

There are a million videos and articles on staging your home, and it’s definitely worth watching a few to get ideas. The best advice I can give you is: clean and organized homes sell.

After you clean the house thoroughly, buy baskets and bins to throw stuff in quickly. Little ones love this part! Michaels or Joanns will have reasonably priced containers but look online for their 40-50% off coupons.

Preparing To Leave For The Day

A Family Activity! Showing your house is a necessary evil of selling it. When everyone is responsible every morning, the task seems easier and less stressful. Since everyone will benefit, everyone can contribute, even to the littles. Make it a fun thing!

You might want to blast music or make it a race or a game with a daily reward. Who’s room will be clean first? Maybe agree to pay the teenager $5-$20 a day for keeping their bathroom and bedroom clean until the house sells. 

A Realtor may call you an hour or two before they want to show your house to ask if they can come. You can always say no. However, if you are prepared, saying yes is easier. Clean houses sell first and sell for more money. If you work outside the home or are going out, you should always be ready for a showing while you are gone.

What ‘Not To Do’ When Showing Your House

Showing your house with unmade beds, or leaving clothes on the floor is to be avoided. Entering a house filled with food odors can be offensive to a buyer so cook non-odorous foods during the period you’ll be showing your house. Prevent negative associations with your home. 

Clients react to an unflushed toilet more than anything. Please, double-check bathrooms and have multiple air fresheners- and use them. Kitty litter boxes need daily cleaning as well as dog areas. SPRAY! USE PLUG-INS! These are minimal time and financial expenses and well worth it!

Your goal is to have a potential buyer in your home for as long as possible. A buyer who only stays at your house for 3-5 minutes will not be buying your house. An excellent policy for the family to adopt is to have your house ready for showing from 9-5 daily. 

Schedule 30 Minutes Each Morning

You cannot “pop out to the store” without having your home ready for a showing. Your house will be in demand every time you leave – that’s how it works. “Spur of the Moment Showings” are inconvenient if you are not prepared. Remember the formula – “Showings = Offers.”

Multiple Offers = Money! When you schedule 20-30 minuteskitchen showing each morning for staging and straightening, an unplanned showing becomes a great thing. 

Do These Things Every Day:

  1. Kitchen- Wash dishes and wipe the table and counter
  2. Spray air-freshener in the entire house
  3. Straighten the TV and family areas
  4. Check each bedroom, make the bed, and pick up clothes.
  5. Go into each bathroom, flush the toilet, put the seat down, check the sink and straighten
  6. Make sure that the toilet is clean and that there’s plenty of toilet paper
  7. Touch-up floors- sweep, mop, and vacuum as needed
  8. Clean-up pet areas
  9. Let natural light into the house- as much as possible
  10. Leave the home at a comfortable temperature
  11. Optional- turn lights on in darker rooms, closets, and baths

Leaving The House During A Showing

Realtors will call for a Showing Appointment, and your job is to do your best to NOT BE THERE when they arrive. You can leave immediately when they arrive. Staying at the house or sitting outside will give the buyer and their Realtor access to you if they like the house and want information.

This can be a situation where your answers may change their minds, whether positively or negatively- you don’t know. Learning your motivation for selling might affect the amount of money they offer. We highly suggest that you leave the property.

Before You Leave:

  1. Do items 1-9 above
  2. Turn on the lights in every room, even in the closets. You want people to see every closet, room, and bathroom.
  3. Make the house bright. Open the blinds! Natural light helps the home feel more inviting.
  4. Take your pet or pets with you if practicable. Barking, jumping, and scratching dogs distract a buyer and cause them to look for dirt and scratches on walls and glass.

Inconsiderate Realtors:

If you are not prepared, getting your home ready to be shown is a lot of work. Another thing: you will probably get stood up while your home is for sale. You might be forgotten, or a buyer may be running late and won’t show for the appointment. Worse yet, they could show up 2-3 hours later, and you’re no longer prepared or eating dinner.

We suggest you get a name and phone number for every Realtor who schedules an appointment with you. A “No Call – No Show” is unprofessional and unacceptable, in my opinion. At least be able to call an agent to ask where they are.

We completely believe that the time and energy you expend each day will come back to you in the form of a great offer. Your hourly rate of pay for the preparation for showing your home will be highly profitable. But remember, minimize your stress. While your house is for sale, if leaving town is an option, have a great vacation! 


This Blog is written by Terri Grosse. Terri has been a top-producing Realtor in Las Vegas since 1993. She specializes in marketing and loves staging and decorating houses. Together with her husband/partner, Kurt, their goal every day is to protect their clients. Kurt is a former NV building engineer and they use their knowledge and skills to look out for you. Give their office a call today – 702-7599.

Explore Further:

Search Resale Homes For Sale – Know Your Competition. Fill out the Home Valuation Form in the menu under Seller. We see more homes each month than other Realtors, and we’ve had extensive appraisal training. We show our listings first. Terri would love to walk through your home with you to make suggestions for selling your home for top dollar.

Homes For Sale By Zip Code Map – Another great resource we have is a zip code page with 7 interactive maps. See what’s going on in your zip code.

U.S. Foreign Seller Tax – FIRPTA– If you are a Foreign National or a partner with one on your home, you need to plan ahead because of the Foreign Investor Real Property Tax Act. If you don’t plan, it will be HARSH. Let us help you with this process.

Increase Your Homes’ Value– What makes your home sell before others? Do you want top dollar for it? Here are things to do that will actually increase the value of your home in the eyes of the buyer – and they’re who will determine the value of your home. Value is what a buyer is willing to pay- make them WANT to pay more.

Other great resources are HGTV and House Beautiful.

Revised September 14, 2021