The tradition of cleaning your home in spring is rooted back in a time when families holed up for the entire winter, leaving homes smelly, dirty and stuffy by the time spring rolled around. These days, we have more freedom of movement and robots to help keep our homes tidy during the winter months. We still spend more time indoors during winter, however, and many families view spring as the perfect time to welcome in the fresh air and do an annual deep-clean.
Spring cleaning is particularly important if a home is about to go on the spring market. Here are a few spring-cleaning tasks you should consider to get your home ready for professional photos, video, 3-D shoot and the plethora of potential buyers who will be walking through it.
- Shovel or de-ice paths and driveways
In most of our country, we have snow or ice on the ground through April. In Saskatchewan, we sometimes have it in May and June (insert eye roll and groan here). To ensure safety and increase curb appeal you need to shovel or lay down ice melt to improve the appeal in photos as well as giving Regina REALTORS® and buyers a safe path around and into the home.
- Tidy landscaping
Most landscaping doesn’t grow during the winter, but like me, you will likely have dead leaves and branches hanging around. Gather these up or prune them away, and make sure you leave a clear sight line to any attractive architectural details of your home.
- Wash driveways and house exterior
Photoshopping to remove stains from a driveway or house can deeply disappoint a buyer when they arrive to view a property. It’s likely better to pressure-wash everything on the front end and make it as presentable as possible.
- Clean out gutters
This isn’t so important from a photography standpoint because gutter interiors aren’t visible from ground level. But if you have showings on rainy days, you definitely don’t want buyers seeing overflowing gutters.
- Clean windows, curtains, and blinds
Good lighting is crucial to good great photos and windows can get very grimy during the fall and winter. You need to clean the glass and window coverings to keep light clear and unpolluted by dust and dirt.
- Clean rugs, carpets and upholstered furniture
Soft furnishings can trap not just visible dirt but also odors from pets, kids, and cooking. To keep things affordable and convenient, have a professional make one trip to clean furniture and floors at the same time, or get it done yourself over a weekend.
- Tidy up, and wipe down cabinets and closets
You know how it goes: homebuyers open every door in the house, including cabinets and closets. So as a seller you must tidy even the hidden spots and wipe down the doors. Clean surfaces will help reflect light around, which your photographer will appreciate.
- Polish floors and finished woodwork
If there’s any time to make sure woodwork and wooden floors are pristine, it’s when you are selling your home. As with cabinets, clean surfaces will not only look better, they’ll help reflect light to make the house brighter.
- Wipe down walls (and paint, if necessary)
Walls are another rarely-cleaned surface that should definitely get a good wipe-down before listing the home. If you are going to paint, perhaps choose lighter colors that help make the rooms look larger and brighter in photos or video.
- Wash pet beds and crates
As a REALTOR®, I would suggest that it’s good practice to hide pet paraphernalia before a photo shoot, open house or showing. But it’s also important to wash your fur babies beds, crates and toys. Otherwise, the odors they trap may put off prospective buyers.
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