Preparing Your Home


Staging your home means preparing your home to look its best. Is it really important?

You bet!  You only have one chance to make a first impression.

Homes must dazzle and captivate buyers the moment they walk in the door. 

Remember that typically a buyer will see many homes in a single day!  Your home must make such an impression on the buyer that he or she will remember it after a busy day.

Research shows that a staged home sells in for more money in less time. Our team will provide advice that will make your home look its best!

Preparing your home to sell: Interior



  • Remove all items from the kitchen countertop except for a few decorative items
  • Make sure oven, refrigerator and microwave are clean (yes, Buyers will look inside!)
  • Remove photos and magnets from refrigerator front 


  • Replace old caulking around bathtubs and showers
  • Keep all mirrors clean and shiny


  • Remove any old ashes
  • Polish fireplace tools, screens and doors
  • Place logs neatly in fireplace


  • Wash interior windows to let the natural light shine through
  • Touch up paint and repair any hairline cracks and nail pops
  • Check ceilings for leak stains, repair cause of leak, repair ceiling, and repaint
  • Replace all burned out light bulbs
  • Clean or replace carpets
  • Clean switch plates and wall plates
  • Make sure all floors shine
  • Tighten stair banisters


  • Box all items from attic, basement and garage and get rid of everything you are not going to move
  • As you pack, remember to keep out documents the new buyer may need or that you may need when applying for your loan on your next house (including tax returns)
  • Make sure there is plenty of light on the stairs to the basement
  • Clean garage floor and oil spills
  • Stack items neatly and close to the walls so basement will look larger 

Preparing your home to sell: Exterior

Here are some suggestions for preparing your home to sell.  If you wan to get the best price for your home, it should excite the buyer as soon as they walk through the door.


  • Make sure the front door is clean and/or freshly painted
  • Put bright flowers in pots on each side of the door or entrance
  • Paint all faded siding, window trim, and shutters
  • Clean all gutters and downspouts 
  • Replace broken or cracked window panes and screens
  • Wash windows so they sparkle and let in the natural light
  • Pressure wash sidewalks and driveways 


  • Keep lawn freshly mowed and trimmed
  • Freshen flowers beds with fresh pine straw and seasonal flowers
  • Put away garbage cans, toys, bicycles, wagons, garden hoses 


  • Pressure wash decks and patios
  • Replace rotten wood, loose rails and stain if needed

Showing Checklist


Below is a list of things to remember to check the day your home is being shown.


  • Keep draperies and blinds open to let in light
  • Turn on all lights and lamps in every room
  • At night, turn on porch lights and outdoor lighting


  • Add bowls of fresh fruit to counter tops and fresh flowers to table
  • Create fragrant aromas; fresh baked cookies, brewed coffee, or cinnamon simmering on the  stove
  • Set the table with attractive, color coordinated place mats, napkins, china


  • Make sure the bathroom counters and mirrors are clean
  • Remove toothbrushes and personal items from counter tops and shower
  • Display fresh, color coordinated towels and shower curtains
  • Place new soap in all soap dishes
  • Light a few scented candles but make sure the scent is not overwhelming


  • Have music playing at very low volume, preferably soft Jazz or Classical music

What’s your home worth? Contact Morris Raney Real Estate for a free market analysis and information on selling your home in Brookhaven, Buckhead, Dunwoody, Sandy Springs, East Cobb, Ansley Park, Morningside, Virgina Highlands, Vinings, Decatur, Emory, Oak Grove, Smyrna and North Atlanta.