Prepping 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

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
  • Pack away all doubles to allow for the appearance of more space.
Remove all personal items
  • shoes and jackets should be put away
  • remove visible access to firearms
  • lock away medications
  • turn off screens (TVs, computers, etc.)
Provide adequate lighting
  • replace burnt out lights with similar color-temperature light bulbs
  • turn on all lights and lamps
  • turn off ceiling fans
  • open all blinds and curtains

Kitchen Prep

Remove as many items from counters as possible
  • store away toasters, mixers, etc in cabinets
  • consider leaving 1-2 items on the counters (i.e. coffee maker/keurig)
  • pack away all extra dishes, pots, pans, baking sheets, knife blocks, etc.
  • always store dirty dishes in the dishwasher
Clean out the fridge and remove all decorations from the outside
Clean the floors
Scrub down your microwave and stove

Living 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 decorate storage to keep them out of sight


  • 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 personal hygiene items from countertops
  • Remove all toiletries from showers and tubs
  • Use white towels if possible or use fresh towels
  • Remove all floor mats

Exterior Prep

  • Close all garage doors
  • Make sure no cars are parked in the driveway or in front of/beside your home
  • Tidy up your landscaping
  • Remove empty planters
  • 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
omaha real estate photographer

Backyard Prep

Clean your deck or patio
  • clean up all outdoor furniture
  • consider using a nice covered storage bin to hide kids’ toys
Clean your swimming pool
  • put away all supplies/pool chemicals
  • turn on water features
  • store away water hoses
Store trash bins in the garage
Pick up pet waste
Keep your lawn watered or you snow removed

Breakfast Nook/Dining Room

  • Clean table and chairs (including legs and seats)
  • Clear away all clutter
  • Use a decorate place setting
  • Use one center piece on the table
  • Store booster seats and high chairs if possible (if not, thoroughly clean them)
  • Straighten the table and space the chairs evenly


  • Make all beds using decorative bedding if possible
  • Use bed skirts to hide items being stored or push items as far under the bed as possible
  • Clear personal items from nightstands, dressers, etc.
  • Store all cables
  • Remove all items from walls and replace them with landscape or object photography
  • Hide diaper storage and empty dirty diapers in the trash bin


  • Keep pet food and water bowls in the pantry
  • Store pet toys
  • Use a 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

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, declutter, vacuum
  • 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 the above items before my arrival.

Thank you for choosing me for your real estate photography and video needs!

Tim Perry