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Our house goes on the market on Saturday. I have done some massive decluttering over the last couple of years and our house is in pretty good shape. I admit I have some neat-freak tendencies, so I like our house to be pretty clean even on a normal day (but of course, with three kids it never spotless by a long shot). But, now I'm going to have people coming through on a regular basis and I want it to look awesome. All the time. Am I setting my expectations too high? How do you keep your house show quality while it's on the market and not go insane??<br><br>
I have three kids under five. And they are messy.
 

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This is what I did. I set up a schedule so that every day, each room was cleaned to showing-ready level. For me it looked like this:<br><br>
Early morning before DS got up: upstairs bathroom, dust (upstairs and downstairs alternated every couple days, didn't dust every day), and sweep/mop (kitchen/up bathroom, entry/down bathroom, then skip a day).<br><br>
After DS woke up: bedroom, playroom, then vacuum (the entire upstairs, every day, downstairs every couple days since we weren't down there much, DS LOVES to help vacuum so that helps), then I also would go outside and make sure our curb appeal was still ok and all.<br><br>
While DS was napping (I sleep with him but generally wake up before him): take out trash, then downstairs bathroom and two downstairs bedrooms (one had nothing much in it, the other was DH's office).<br><br>
Before bed (while DH was putting DS to sleep): family room downstairs, entry, living room, dining room, kitchen.<br><br>
This sounds like a LOT of cleaning and it was. But my house was always fabulous looking. I also wrote out a quick-cleaning list so that when I got that call for a showing in an hour I knew just what to do (eg. make sure dishes are washed and put away. make bed. wipe spots off bathroom mirror. etc.)<br><br>
But the biggest thing I can probably recommend is to price your house on the low side for the market in your area so that it goes fast and you don't have to do this too long. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
I wish you luck in selling.
 

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Halfway through the hubby's deployment he surprised me that we were moving a few years early, as soon as he was to return...leaving me to put the house on the market with 2 small children, so I can empathize, lol!<br><br>
My big issue was the kiddos bringing their stuff or having their stuff in nearly every room, so I began clearing out most toys from miscellaneous rooms (kitchen, LR, DR, our room, bonus room, their rooms - everywhere!). In the LR and bonus room I decluttered some pieces of furniture where we could secretly stash just a more reasonable number of toys, so in the event of someone coming to see the house last-minute, all I had to do was toss the toys in the basket or drawer, etc. in that room.<br><br>
Good luck!
 

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Pack a bunch of stuff away that you can deal with not having around until you move and clean regularly.<br><br>
It's hard, I know. I cleaned my house this morning and an hour later the mess started to spread from room to room. Mine are 2 and 4.
 

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first, we basically purged and then packed. anything we weren't using or keeping was either sold or given away. so, our house was the basic furnishings, the basics for our kitchen, and our clothes, computers, toys, and such that we were taking with us to NZ (so that luggage was also in the bedroom closet).<br><br>
second, i always have a daily cleaning schedule so that my house is clean and tidy. i like tidy a great deal. lol but, i scrub a room once a week, but i do things daily like sweep, dust, wipe down, straighten, and so on.<br><br>
so, when we lived in the house, it was 3 BR, and two were unused. i just organized them so they looked nice and neat. i mostly hung out down stairs with the baby during the day when we weren't out, so his toys were down there in a laundry basket. he doesn't have many because i prefer to be minimalist with toys.<br><br>
i would wake in the morning and immediately make the bed (still do this), and then dust and sweep that room and straighten up. DS would hang out along side (playing). i would go into the bathroom and we would get cleaned up, then i would wipe down the bathroom.<br><br>
then we would go downstairs and do breakfast. i would clean up immediately after, putting dishes away and such. DS would play with his toys in the living room while i was cleaning the kitchen (it was all one big room called an LDK in modern architecture terms. LOL).<br><br>
then, i would sweep and dust downstairs.<br><br>
when DS would have his nap, i would put all of his toys into his laundry basket, then dust the two empty rooms. i would step outside to the front porch for curb appeal (ds would be sleeping in the living room where i could see/hear him while i cared for flowers in pots and swept up).<br><br>
and then, should anyone need to come over at any time, i just had to toss toys into the laundry basket!
 

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One thing that helped was to plan as much time as possible away from the house. We had lots of playdates and outtings to keep the kids out of the house and minimize the chaos.<br><br>
I know that the pre-soaked, disposable <a href="http://www.lysol.com/products/disinfecting-wipes/" target="_blank">Lysol wipes</a> are not very eco-friendly, they are helpful for quick wipe-ups when you are trying to get the bathrooms and kitchen tidied up right away after they have been used. I realize it only saves a few seconds compared to using a rag and diluted vinegar, but it's helpful to be able to get rid of the wipe, rather than having to store the dirty rag somewhere, and your house doesn't smell like vinegar (a little off-putting when it's shown to prospective buyers). When you have so many other things to deal with, being able to grab a wipe and clean-up is nice.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>berry987</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15453752"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Our house goes on the market on Saturday. I have done some massive decluttering over the last couple of years and our house is in pretty good shape. I admit I have some neat-freak tendencies, so I like our house to be pretty clean even on a normal day (but of course, with three kids it never spotless by a long shot). But, now I'm going to have people coming through on a regular basis and I want it to look awesome. All the time. Am I setting my expectations too high? How do you keep your house show quality while it's on the market and not go insane??<br><br>
I have three kids under five. And they are messy.</div>
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When I sold my home several years ago I requested 2 hrs notice on ANY showing, that gave me time to clean, deal with DS and such. I still see this request now, in the market like it is today. Can you put a request like that in your listing?
 

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Assuming you have a car: Get a couple of extra laundry baskets, when you need to leave the house, go thru your house with the baskets filling them with any out of place stuff and put the baskets in your car.<br><br>
Keep a basket of clean, new towels at hand (plus a new bar of soap in a clean dish, that sort of thing). When you go to leave - put the clean new towels on the racks and toss the real towels into the baskets in a closet (any random detritus can also be scooped up and hidden under the towels in the laundry baskets).<br><br>
Keep a great looking bowl of apples, plus place mats, etc. on top of your frig (so kids won't eat them <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngtongue.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Stick Out Tongue">). When you go to leave, set these out on the table.<br><br>
Orchid - great plant to buy and have in your living room - lasts much longer than equally expensive cut flowers.<br><br>
I had a garage attached to my house last time we moved and I would put the kids in the minivan with a snack while I did a run-through of the house before leaving. My van was a huge mess, but the house sold quickly.<br><br>
Good luck!
 

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This is all great advice!!! We are suddenly moving to CA asap and the house is a total wreck! We have a dumpster in the driveway since the kitchen & baths have to be updated for a quick sale and it is very hard to nit just toss everything in there! I am freecycling every day and craigslisting some stuff, but it takes time...<br>
I hope that in two weeks when the kit & baths are done that I will use the baskets in car idea & placematsw/apples - GREAT!
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/notes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="notes"> we may be doing this soon.
 
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