Showing your home is a crucial part of the home selling process, as it can greatly impact a potential buyer's perception of your property. In order to make a positive impression, there are certain steps you can take to ensure that your home looks its best. Here are some tips for showing your home:


  • Make sure your front entrance is clean and inviting
  • Paint or replace your front door if it's faded or worn
  • Add some paint to shutters, trim, and any other outside features showing signs of wear
  • Add vibrant plants and put down some fresh mulch

Accentuate the Positive:

  • Keep windows and floors clean
  • Replace faded wallpaper and glue any areas that have come away from the wall
  • Repair worn woodwork
  • Repaint scarred or dirty walls in a neutral color
  • Steam clean carpeting or replace it, if necessary
  • Repair loose knobs, sticking doors and windows, warped cabinet drawers, broken light switches, and other minor flaws
  • Check and repair caulking in bathtubs and showers
  • Open draperies and curtains to let the light in during the showing
  • Remove all unnecessary clutter from your attic, basement, and closets to better display spacious rooms (consider storage or a garage sale to dispose of extraneous items)
  • Arrange all your rooms neatly and remove excess furniture
  • Keep fresh, clean towels in the bathroom
  • Use candles or air fresheners to make the room smell pleasant

Put Your Home in the Best Possible Light:

  • Avoid the use of overhead lighting that makes rooms look washed out and lifeless
  • Be creative and arrange lamps to help smaller rooms seem larger, and large rooms seem more intimate
  • Use lighting to highlight the "living areas" of your home, such as a pair of chairs near a fireplace or a table in a breakfast area


  • Clear all unnecessary objects from furniture throughout the house
  • Keep decorative objects on the furniture restricted to groups of 1, 3, or 5 items
  • Clear all unnecessary objects from the kitchen countertops
  • Clear refrigerator fronts of messages, pictures, etc.
  • In the bathroom, remove any unnecessary items from countertops, tubs, shower stalls, and commode tops
  • Keep only your most needed cosmetics, brushes, perfumes, etc., in one small group on the counter
  • Coordinate towels to one or two colors only
  • Rearrange or remove some of the furniture if necessary
  • Take down or rearrange certain pictures or objects on walls
  • Patch and paint if necessary
  • Review the house inside room by room
  • Paint any room needing paint, clean carpets or drapes that need it, clean windows
  • Leave on certain lights during the day
  • During "showings" turn on all lights and lamps
  • Have stereo FM on during the day for all viewings
  • Lockbox--#1 Importance: "If we don't have it, they won't show it."


  • Trim landscaping to reveal architectural detail (bottom of windows, etc.)
  • Go around the perimeter of the house and move all garbage cans, discarded wood scraps, extra building materials, etc., into the garage
  • Check gutters and/or roof for dry rot. Make sure they are swept and cleaned
  • Look at all plants and prune bushes and trees
  • Keep plants from blocking windows
  • Weed and then bark all planting areas
  • Keep lawn freshly cut and fertilized
  • Remove any dead plants or shrubs
  • Clear patios or decks of all small items, such as small planters, flower pots, charcoal, barbecues, toys, etc. (Put them in the garage)
  • Check paint condition of the house-especially the front door and trim