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How to Prepare Your Home for Listing Photos and Video

Friday Feb 22nd, 2019


With the majority of buyers starting their real estate searches online, having professional photos, videos and virtual tours are critical for all listings. You need to make the best first impression in the hopes of a potential buyer wanting to book a showing and – even better – make an offer on your home. But, to be successful, you’ve got to prepare your indoor and outdoor spaces to look as welcoming behind the photo lens as they do in person. 

Here is a checklist to help you whip your home into shape before the photographer arrives so that it looks remarkable in listing photos and virtual tours:

Whole Home Considerations 
•    Thoroughly clean the whole house, paying close attention to all surfaces and windows
•    Open all blinds and windows to let in natural light
•    Turn on all overhead lights and lamps and replace any burnt out bulbs
•    Turn off ceiling fans, televisions and computer screens
•    Remove personal photographs 
•    Remove small floor rugs and mats to reveal flooring
•    Hide pet food and water bowls, beds and toys

•    Clean all surfaces including cabinet doors
•    Clear countertops of knife blocks, utensils, dish racks, mail, papers and other items
•    Limit small appliances to one item, like a coffee maker
•    Clear magnets, papers and photos from refrigerator doors
•    Clean appliances to remove fingertips, especially stainless steel
•    Hide garbage cans, compost containers and recycling bins
•    Remove dirty dishes from the sink

•    Clear countertops off completely
•    Remove shampoo, soap and other personal items from showers and tubs
•    Put toilet seats down
•    Display clean towels
•    Remove floor mats
•    Clean all mirrors, countertop surfaces and cabinet doors

Dining Rooms or Eat-in Kitchens
•    Clean off the table, followed by a dusting and polish 
•    Display a simple decorative place setting 
•    Include a centrepiece, like a bouquet of fresh flowers
•    Remove any feeding high chairs or booster seats
•    Straighten all chairs and space them evenly

Living Rooms, Family Rooms and Dens
•    Remove magazines, papers, mail, books and other paper clutter
•    Hide any cables, cords and remote controls
•    Pare down items on fireplace mantel and hearth 
•    Clean interior of the fireplace, including the glass
•    Fluff and arrange throw pillows and blankets
•    Remove children’s toys and baby equipment, like playards and safety gates

•    Make beds and display decorative pillows or throws
•    Clear nightstands and dressers of all personal items
•    Hide any cables, cords and remote controls
•    Tidy closets and pare down items to make storage appear larger
•    Clean under the bed and remove any items that may show in the photos
•    Remove dirty diaper receptacles from children’s rooms
•    Hide laundry hampers
Mudrooms and Entryways
•    Put away extra jackets, coats and shoes
•    Store mail, flyers and other clutter
•    Hide backpacks, purses, leashes and accessories, like hats and gloves

Outdoor Spaces
•    Tidy porch area and store any clutter
•    Close garage doors
•    Remove vehicles from the driveway and the front of the home
•    Clean up landscaping suitable for the season
•    Remove empty planters or dead foliage
•    Use a broom to remove cobwebs from eaves and door frames
•    Remove visible water hoses
•    Store sporting equipment, toys, bikes and lawn equipment
•    Clean exterior elements, like windows, doors, trim and siding
•    Turn on any outdoor water features
•    Clean pools and spas and store any equipment or chemicals

When it comes to selling quickly and for top dollar, marketing your home to gain maximum exposure is important. When you partner with me for your real estate needs, you can trust that your listing will feature professional photography and a high-quality virtual tour to showcase your home in the best possible way.

To learn more about my comprehensive array of home selling services or to schedule a free home evaluation, contact me, Deborah Clerk, Real Estate Sales Representative, ASA with Keller Williams Realty Solutions, Brokerage, in Mississauga, Ontario.

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