There are a lot of questions you should ask your Realtor when you are interviewing but one that we’ve never heard is, “when was the last time you sold your own home?” As Realtors we help people buy and sell homes all the time but we’re not the ones making the bed each and every morning and heading out the door with the house in showroom condition. Until now. With our house listed for sale we’ve got to through the same routine that all of our sellers go through every morning- picking up and making sure the house is ready to be shown with little notice. It’s not easy with a toddler and a dog whose combined “house trashing power” makes the Peanut’s Pigpen look sterile.
A fellow Realtor friend says that part of every Realtors license renewal should be that they move every five years so that they don’t forget the feeling of having their home on the market (it’s been six years for us so it is time).
The non-optional morning routine now includes (we normally do a lot of this but rarely complete all under normal not-listed circumstances):
- Making the bed (and helping a four year old make his)
- Cleaning up 100% after breakfast
- Picking up after the dog in the yard
- Picking up any dirty laundry and putting away any clean laundry
- Putting all toys away
- Putting all the things that just end up on every flat surface away
- If you know that the house is being shown turning on every light and making it look as inviting as possible.
They all seem like simple enough projects but they don’t always happen everyday without a concerted effort. We have two Roomba robotic vacuum cleaners that do a pretty good job on the floors. They make keeping up with the dog hair manageable.
There’s a lot of truth to the Murphy’s Law syndrome that the best way to get your house shown is to walk out the door with it trashed. If you really must run out the door focus on what might result in, “oh— gross” from a potential buyer. Some examples (listed from experience): last night’s dinner and this morning’s dishes piled in the sink, dirty underwear on the bathroom floor, unflushed toilets, etc.
Another Realtor friend receive a call from a seller that went something like this, “you showed my home today and either you or your client left a used Q-Tip and Kleenex on the counter. How could you do that??? That’s so unprofessional.” “Ummm. It wasn’t us. They weren’t there when we left. Don’t know what to tell you.” The phone rang a few minutes later. “My husband fessed that it was him. So sorry.” Having you home listed is stressful. Trust us, we understand.
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