Showing Your Home

Your home should look its best when being shown. 


  • Open draperies and curtains to let the light in during the showing.
  • Clear all unnecessary objects from the kitchen countertops.
  • Clear refrigerator fronts of messages, pictures, magnets, etc. A sparse kitchen helps buyers mentally move their own things into your kitchen.
  • In the bathroom, remove any unnecessary items from countertops, tubs, shower stalls and commode tops. Coordinate clean towels to one or two colors only.
  • Turn on all lights, it's showtime! 


  • Trim landscaping to reveal architectural detail (bottom of windows, etc). "If they can't see it, we can't sell it."
  • Go around the perimeter of the house and move all garbage cans, discarded wood scraps, extra building materials, etc., into the garage.
  • Look at all plants. Prune bushes and trees. Keep plants from blocking windows. Plants are like children--they grow so fast!
  • Weed and mulch all planting areas. Keep lawn freshly cut. Remove any dead plants or shrubs.
  • Clear patios or decks of all small items and put them in the garage.
  • Check paint condition of the house--especially the front door and trim. "Curb appeal really works!"
  • Lockbox--#1 Importance: "If we don't have it, they won't show it."

In General

Try to look at your house "through the buyer's eyes" as though you've never seen it or been there before. Any time or money spent on these items will bring you back more money in return, and hopefully a faster sale.

Nine Minute Showing Drill

Occasionally, you will receive a call to schedule a showing to take place within the next few minutes. The following is a checklist for this type of panic:

  1. Sound: Turn off the television and tune the radio (low volume) to a soft rock, middle of the road or classic rock station.
  2. Sight: Turn on every light in the house (day or night) and open every drape and blind (day time only). 
  3. Odors: Keep home ventilated and, when possible, open windows to freshen the home. 
  4. Kitchen: Wipe kitchen counters, place dirty dishes in dishwasher.
  5. Bathrooms: Wipe counters, flush and close toilets.
  6. Living/Family Rooms: Hide magazines, newspapers, and games; Remove clutter.
  7. Bedrooms: Straighten beds. Hide clutter under bed (not in closet).
  8. Exterior: Put away toys and clutter. Keep walkway clear.
  9. Children & Pets: They are a distraction, so send them outside.
  10. Goodbye: Sorry, but this is the single most important thing you can do in a showing to help sell your home! Even if the showing agent insists that it is okay to stay, you should leave. Buyers must get emotionally committed to your home to buy it and they cannot become emotional about "their new home" if you, the current owners, are "hanging around." Please, at the very least, go into the backyard. Even better, go for a walk or to the store.