One of the first rules of showing a home that is for sale is that it should be clean and clutter free. After a home for sale had been de-cluttered, it is time for a deep cleaning. I often recommend hiring a professional cleaning company to do this initial deep cleaning. Professionals will often clean spots overlooked or avoided by the homeowner. The initial cleaning is the easy part. The hard part is keeping it clean. If the home is unique, a fixer-upper, or in a slow moving market, it may take multiple showings and multiple months to sell.
Keeping a home clean for many months is a huge task. There are a few tricks that can help keep a home clean for an extended period of time.
After cleaning your furniture and carpets, apply carpet sealant and protective sprays. These are the same products the furniture store tried to sell you when you bought your carpets and furniture and they are available at home improvement stores. They help fabrics resist mildew, mold and bacteria. These products also protect against stains. No one wants a grape juice stain on the carpet the day of a showing. As a bonus, some of these products also reduce fading.
After cleaning your baths and showers, apply a car windshield rain repellant. These products are available in any auto supply store. They create an invisible barrier on your shower walls and glass. This barrier will cause soap suds, oils, and water to bead and roll off. Soap scum will be a thing of the past.
After cleaning your stone countertops, apply a sealer. Most stone counter tops have a sealer applied when they are installed, but sealers should be periodically reapplied. Juice, sauces, and red wine can all easily stain countertops that are not properly sealed. A properly sealed countertop will also wipe clean much easier. A good way to test a seal is to pour a tiny bit of water on the counter. The water should bead and stay beaded for two to three minutes. If it does not, it is time to apply a sealer.
To reduce dust in a home and to make dusting easier, a home should have a humidity level of between forty and fifty percent. This can be achieved with a dehumidifier and or a humidifier. A humid home with moist air is ideal for dust mites. A dry home can have static electric build up. The static electricity attracts dust and makes dusting more difficult.
Showings are often requested at the most inconvenient times, so keeping the home for sale clean at all times is important. Employing these cleaner-longer methods will help remove some off the stress involved with showings.
Rick is a realtor, real estate author, and longtime Windham resident. You can reach Rick with all your real estate questions and needs at firstname.lastname@example.org.