How to Tidy Up Before Showings for Prospective Tenants

How much should you clean before a showing for a potential tenant? When we got that question 10 years ago, the answer was easier, but those who look today expect a more tidy and styled home and have difficulty ignoring messy environments when choosing a home to sublet.  Marie Kondo has also created a cleaning craze that even some of us on our team have gotten a bit obsessed with doing. 

Does the home need to be perfect and #konmarid 100%? No, but some things are more important than others when those potential tenants come knocking on the door. Here is a list of the most important things to consider before showing your home:

1. Open your curtains, pull up all blinds and turn on the lights
2. Make the beds
3. Throw away used diapers, clear clothes from the floor (yep, this list is created by situations we encountered showing homes)
4. Fold and put away your laundry
5. Fold down the toilet lid
6. Keep in mind that many people want to see storage so order in wardrobes/closets is appreciated
7. Clear the breakfast and dishes from the kitchen
8. If you have an abundance of trinkets and photos, put some away to make the space less personal
9. You do not need to do a full cleaning but vacuum so that there are no dust bunnies on the floor
10. Think of scents. Do you have a teenager at home whose room has a lovely "gym bag from 2012" odor? Run an ozone machine in the room or a scented candle that is discreet

Obviously, it should not feel overwhelming to prepare your home for a showing, but small fixes can make a huge difference for how quickly you get a tenant, how many you have to choose from and what rent level you end up getting. Since you are subletting due to a move, take the opportunity and combine cleaning and organization for your showings with preparing for your move.  If you need inspiration, look at Marie Kondo and her tips.