Omaha Real Estate Photographer
Contact us: 402-215-5479

How to prepare your home for a real estate showing

how to prepare your home for a real estate showingWhy should you prep your home for a real estate showing?

Buyers start their shopping online, so having professional photos of a well-staged, clean home is one way to introduce your home to potential buyers!

General home prep tips

  • Deep clean your entire home
    • Vacuum all carpet
    • Mop all hard floors
    • Remove all small floor rugs
    • Clean all countertops
    • Clean all windows/doors/screens/window treatments
    • Clean all ceiling fans
    • Clean all hallway closets and mudrooms
  • If possible, pack away “doubles” (i.e. holiday dishes and collectibles) to allow for the appearance of more space.
  • Remove all personal photographs (can replace with generic landscape photography)
  • Shoes and jackets should be put away
  • Remove visible access to firearms
  • Wipe down walls or consider a fresh coat of paint
  • Wipe down all trim work
  • Lock away all medications
  • Turn off all screens (TVs, computers, etc.)
  • Check all lights in your home, and replace any burnt out ones with similar color-temperature light bulbs
  • Turn on all lights and lamps
  • Turn off all ceiling fans
  • Open all blinds and curtains

how to prepare your home for a real estate showingExterior

  • Close all garage doors
  • Make sure no cars are parked in the driveway or in front of/beside your home
  • Tidy up your landscaping (frequently mow, trim shrubs, clear away leaves, etc.)
  • Remove empty planters or plant
  • Remove cobwebs from your exterior
  • Consider washing your siding if necessary
  • Tidy up your hoses or remove them from view completely
  • Tidy up toys, balls, outdoor games, and so on

how to prepare your home for a real estate showingBackyard

  • Clean your deck or patio
  • Clean up all outdoor furniture (consider washing/replacing any pillows or cushions if necessary)
  • Consider using a nice covered storage bin to hide kids’ toys
  • Give your swimming pool a good cleaning
  • Put all cleaning supplies/pool chemicals away from view
  • Turn on any water features
  • Store water hoses
  • Store trash bins in the garage
  • Pick up all dog waste
  • Keep your lawn watered or your snow removed

how to prepare your home for a real estate showingKitchen

  • Pack away all extra dish sets and any pots, pans, baking equipment, knife blocks, etc. you won’t be using while your house is on the market
  • Consider leaving 1-2 items on the counters (i.e. coffee maker/Keurig)
  • Remove as many items from the countertops as possible. Store toasters, mixers, etc. in cabinets if possible
  • Clean out refrigerator and remove all magnets, photos, etc. from the outside
  • Hide all garbage cans (can place in pantry, closet, etc.)
  • Always have dirty dishes stored in the dishwasher
  • Clean floors
  • Scrub down your microwave and stove

how to prepare your home for a real estate showingBreakfast Nook/Dining Room

  • Clean table and chairs, including legs and seats.
  • Clear away all clutter
  • You can use decorative place settings
  • Use one centerpiece on the table
  • Store booster seats and high chairs if possible; if not, thoroughly clean them
  • Straighten the table and space the chairs evenly around it.

how to prepare your home for a real estate showingLiving Rooms

  • Clear all magazines, newspapers, mail, etc.
  • Fluff and arrange all furniture pillows and cushions
  • Clean fireplace
  • Keep no more than 5 items on the fireplace mantel
  • Remove children’s toys or use decorative storage to keep them out of sight

how to prepare your home for a real estate showingBedrooms

  • Make all beds using decorative bedding if possible
  • Use bed skirts to hide items being stored beneath bed OR push items as far under the bed as possible so as not to be visible
  • Clear personal items from nightstands, dressers, etc.
  • Store all cables (i.e. tablet and smartphone chargers, watch chargers, etc.)
  • Remove all items from walls (i.e. stickers, family photographs, posters, etc.) and replace with landscape or object photography
  • Hide diaper storage and empty dirty diapers in a trash bin

how to prepare your home for a real estate showingBathrooms

  • Wipe down shower, sinks, tubs, toilets, and countertops
  • Leave toilet seat lids down
  • Close closet doors (unless it’s a door to the master closet)
  • Remove all items from countertops (i.e. deodorant, toothbrushes, soap, etc.)
  • Remove all items from showers and tubs (i.e. shampoo, conditioner, soap, etc.)
  • Use white towels if possible (for a spa-like feeling) or use fresh towels
  • Remove all floor mats

how to prepare your home for a real estate showingPets

  • Keep pet food and water bowls in the pantry
  • Store pet toys
  • Use lint roller on furniture
  • Keep pets in a kennel/crate or take them with you during showings

What to expect from your real estate photographer

Hi! I’m Tim Perry, owner of Tim Perry Photography. I’m so glad you’ve chosen me as the photographer/videographer for your FSBO or other real estate listings!

When I arrive to shoot your property, I ask that all of the items above are completed and the property is ready to go. Please don’t think you’ll have time to rearrange things or put things away before I shoot each room–we just don’t have that kind of time.

Unfortunately, I’m not a professional stager. Therefore, I ask that your property is show-ready to maximize my time as well as yours. I will not do the following:

  • Rearrange furniture
  • Make beds, clean, vacuum, declutter
  • Pick up toys or remove unnecessary yard items
  • “Photoshop” wall treatments, powerlines, cords, vehicles, damaged walls, etc.

I will capture your home “as-is” at the time of your scheduled appointment, so please complete all of the above items before my arrival.

Again, thank you for choosing me for your real estate photography and video needs!

Tim Perry

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