Selling a Home While Still Living in It – 5 Tips for Success

1. Consider a Cleaning Service

When you are just about to list the home, you may consider hiring a professional cleaning service to provide a thorough cleaning of the surfaces, windows, and flooring.

If your home takes more than a couple of weeks to start bringing in offers, you might want to bring the service back every week or two to make sure the rooms are still in showing quality.

This will save you the time and struggle of scrubbing floors on your hands and knees, plus the endless spraying and be wiping off the windows.

2. Simplify Routines

When you have all the time in the world to get your home ready for something, you can take as long as you like in any particular task.

By comparison, if you need the home to be prepared for potential buyers in a moment, you should simplify your routines as much as you can.

Take complicated dinner dishes off the table for the time being, or make a bunch of meals on a non-showing day that you can serve every day with less cleanup.

It may relieve some stress to have a daily cleaning routine to get rid of small messes before they accumulate.

3. Create a Cutter management system

Decluttering is not merely an item that you can complete and then check off your home selling to-do list.

As you go through the selling process, you have to prevent clutter from creeping back in.

If the timing of the sale involves a seasonal clothing change, make a plan to quickly cycle out the off-season gear and clothing to a storage unit.

Set small garbage cans near all entry doors, so that everyone can throw away junk mail or old school papers as soon as they walk in the door—just make sure to put them away before open houses or showings.

4. Set Regular Showing Times

Obviously, you want to be as available as possible for buyers who would like to see your place.

This does not mean you have to vacate the home 12 hours a day, every day.

Ask your real estate agent for the most popular showing times for buyers, and try to open your schedule on those days.

Making an effort to accommodate buyers when they are more likely to need it will allow you the flexibility to live your life at other times.


5. Prepare for the Unexpected

Even with a firmly-set showing schedule, you understand that there may be surprises.

You never know when your agent might call you and ask if you are available for a showing in a couple of hours.

Prepare for this eventuality, so that you are never caught off-guard and in a state of un-readiness.

Stock your car with snacks and other necessities in case you have to be out of the home in a hurry.

Keep a cleaning tool caddy handy so that you can quickly walk through the home and wipe down counters and floors as needed.

Once you have listed the property, home selling often feels like a “hurry up and wait” arrangement. With these tips, you can preserve your home as clean as it looked when you listed it, without driving yourself crazy cleaning and organizing every day.


Talk to Your Pet’s Veterinarian First. Selling a home can be just as stressful for the pet as it is for the homeowner.

When selling a home with pets, at the very least, you should remove your them from your home when you are showing the property for sale.

Repair any damage. As much as we love our pets, they are still animals, and pet damage is never attractive when selling your home.

Remove Pet Odors and Stains. Cat Litter Box OdorsSavePets have accidents; and while it is possible to get used to the pet smell over time, new visitors to your home will be sure to notice the smells.

Clean Your Yard. Pick up any messes in the backyard, and have any sod replaced and other damage repaired as necessary.

Erase Signs of Your Pet for Potential Buyers. Remove Pet Photos as want to buyers to be as unaware of your pet ownership as possible. If they ask the question, you will have to answer honestly. However, you can often avoid this by taking necessary steps like those listed above. In addition, put away all pet toys, bedding, litter boxes and food – preferably at another location besides your home. (This last step is relative as many people are pet lovers as I am and they don’t mind that they are pet in the home and they will love to see the pets’ pictures)

Let me help make your home sale a success. If you’re ready to begin the selling process, give me a call today!

Stella Bonin
Associate Broker

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

Arizona Department of Real Estate # BR5550696000
California Bureau of RealEstate # 01222569


“Equal Housing Opportunity”

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