Making Your Home Ready to Sell

The biggest objective is to make the home look loved and not neglected. Walk your entire home inside and out and make notes of items that require repairs or replacement. Ask family and friends to join you. Respect their honesty. Replace broken switch plates, stained, dirty torn broadloom, fix broken locks, broken windows, dripping taps, loose tiles. 

Painting is the cheapest form of changing any room/house. Choose neutral colours, whites, whites and whites. For walls use matte or eggshell finishes, trim with a satin or semi gloss. Make the room bright and large. Remove old drapes and leave open for sunlight filled rooms. Changing the interior doors and hardware can result in a dramatically updated home.

Make your prospective buyer feel at home when they walk through the front door. This can be accomplished by depersonalizing, removing all pictures of family and friends, and adding warm pictures and mirrors. Odor neutralizers are highly recommended especially if pets have been living or smoking has taken place inside the home.

Declutter and purge the home, make it look spacious. This is a great time to get rid of old items taking up space, less to move, less cost. Begin going through all closets and cupboards and drawers. Do you really need 7 wooden spoons, and the broken couch in the basement? Will you need all household items in your new home? Downsizing house to condo, get rid of non required items: snow blowers, lawn mowers, rakes, ladders, shovels.....Have a garage sale, donate, Recycle (be kind to the environment) or garbage

Buyers like open counter space, remove items and make as much space as possible, focus on kitchens and baths, which are of large interest with buyers. If you are unable to get rid of all the items that make your home look stuffed, put them in storage. A stuffed home looks small to buyers, even if it is a mansion. Keep storage areas spacious, clean and well-lit, stuffed closets and storage areas suggest lack of storage space, not your organization skills.

Lower Level: Usually with less natural light than the rest of the home, consider adding table lamps and standing lamps to brighten up the lower level as much as possible.  Less furniture will make the lower level seem larger.

Garage: remove as many items as you can to show off its large spaciousness room for a car(s)

Curb appeal, and yard
First impression, is the moment they see the home, the outside
Clean windows,

Lawn, edging and hedges trimmed, weed the flower beds
Trees, dead wood removed, you may require a permit from the city, check with forestry before beginning any work
Water lawn (depending on season)
Plant flowers
Toys, kept neat and tidy
Pool, whirl pool, hot tub, should be clean and looking its best
Pet droppings should be picked up
Make sure mail is picked up
Leave lights on, well-lit pathways, and doorways , check that all lights work,
Pathways kept clear, broom swept,
Add a welcome door mat to the home to give a warm welcome feeling
Entrance, clean door and maintained screen door, fix if torn,
Clean eavestrough and downspout

Driveway shoveled and clear
Pathways shoveled and clear
Salt driveway and pathways to prevent injuries from falling,
Clear overhead snow and ice from falling
Lights to come on early, well-lit pathways and doorways

Staging: do you require it??

Right Price: realistic price, know your competition,
A home priced well should sell, a home over priced will sit on the market and help homes around it sell

Lock Box: Showing your home, with a lock box, discuss with Michael Fenn

A clean, neat, tidy home with a nice smell, correctly priced, is a great accomplishment!

Begin packing:

Required materials: boxes, packing paper, tape gun, tape, markers

Label boxes on the side so you can read the label when boxes are stacked, label by room

Fragile boxes on top, mark clearly ”FRAGILE”

Weight, make sure that the boxes can be easily lifted, don’t over fill, keep at a manageable carrying weight, that can be moved up and down stairs,

Clear bags for clothes, DO NOT use dark garbage bags for anything but garbage, it is possible to be thrown out, it has happened!!!!

#1 boxes, what you need daily to survive,

#2 boxes, what you can live without, for a while

Mortgage: review your current mortgage, with your mortgage professional, review your payout penalty, get preapproval from your mortgage professional for the amount you can afford in a new home.

These are only a few examples of Making Your Home Ready to Sell, to get a better understanding of the process please call Michael Andrew Fenn to discuss your specific situation.

Open House Ready

The time has come to show off your home, below is a list of ideas to help generate the best sale!!

Refer first to “Making your home ready to sell”

Store all valuables, cash, watches, jewelry, I-pods, cell phones, in a safe place, to avoid theft, use a safe, or off premises

Store all personal information, to prevent ID theft

Store all medication, to prevent theft

Clean, Neat, Tidy your Home!!!!!!!!!!

Vacuum, mop floors, add entrance welcome mat, most people will use it and will help keep floors clean

De-clutter, all workspaces, shelves, tables, hallways, hide remotes, power cables, extension cords, magazines, newspapers, books unless for show

Remove all things off all counters, kitchen, bathrooms, den, family room, bar, buyers like lots of counter space, make the space look large

Toys keep in one area, to prevent people from tripping/falling

Furniture to be placed in areas to show open space, not jam in with little space to move

Dining Room Table, set a formal dinner table or decorate the dining table to show a warm family feeling

Bedrooms: All beds made, arrange pillows and bedding to show off room

Kitchens: remove all magnets from fridge, clean appearance, remove dish towels and cloths from view

Keep Fridge clean, no bad smells, no onions, no leftovers on plates, keep neat, buyers look everywhere

Bathrooms, toilet seats down, towels and wash cloths away unless for show,

Temperature according to season: Heat, Air conditioning set accordingly

Smells, de-odorize, pets, smoke, you may not smell it, since you live with it, but buyers will

Dehumidifier, to get rid of musty smell, use in the summer months

Humidifier: if air is to dry, use in the winter months

Cooking: careful what you are cooking, no fish, baking is good, pies, apple, makes the home smell nice


Flowers, brighten up the rooms inside, welcome feeling outside

Make sure all garbage kitchen, bathroom, den, bedrooms is removed from the home, both food and household garbage, out of sight, get rid of the smells

Lights On, keep every light on in the house, even outside lights on in the day light, garage lights as well, people feel welcome, storage areas as well, if no lights buy battery operated lights this will show off the ample storage your home has. Replace any burnt out bulbs

Windows: Open all curtains and blinds, if view is unpleasant keep closed

Clean up after the pets, pick up all pet droppings

Remove animals from the home during showings, some buyers may be afraid or allergic

Make sure pathways are clear, winter shovelled and salted, summer edged and broom swept

Remove automobiles from the home driveway and garage, to show off the driveway and the garage

These are only a few examples of Making your home ready for an Open House, to get a better understanding of the process please call Michael Andrew Fenn to discuss your specific situation.

After the Accepted Offer

Lawyer: Confirm agreement with your Lawyer

Financing: Confirm agreement with your Mortgage Professional

Insurance: Confirm agreement with your Insurance agent

Moving: Arrange moving day with moving company, order packing material, boxes, packing paper, tape gun, tape, and markers. If moving from or to a Condo/Apartment: Is the freight elevator required? If so Book!

Begin packing: start with the items you do not require until after the move. Example seasonal: if it is the summer season, pack the snow suits. To make unpacking in your new home manageable, plan ahead, number all boxes, on side of box, and number the rooms of your new home, (map house rooms) movers don’t know little Joey but they do know Bedroom #2.  Do not over load boxes, ensure you are able to lift with ease. Fragile mark clearly!! Wrap fragile items with clothing to save on packing material. Plants, some are not good travelers. A great time again to review items that can be recycled, donated, garage sale, or thrown out.

#1 box, pack in a clear plastic container, this way you can see what is inside, items you need on arrival,

Take photos of items that require to be dismantled like: T.V./ Stereo equipment and beds. Review photos when putting back together, keep screws and parts in clear zip lock bags, write on them

Return to neighbours:
Once you find or know of anything that you have borrowed from a neighbour now is the time to return it, or get it back!

Arrange travel (if required) plane tickets, hotel reservations, car carriers, pet transportation, medical, if prescriptions are required ensure you have enough for travel and on arrival.

Banking: Deposit boxes, do not forget


Home Phone
Cell Phones, family phones

Canada Post, forward mail

Alarms System

Address and Phone number change:
Inform Family and Friends
Place of worship
Work place
School and Teachers, child care
Driver’s license,
Health Card,
Bank Account
Credit Cards

Clubs:  Golf and Country Club, Sport clubs, Hockey Team, Tennis.....
Marina, boat storage,
Cottage, service companies
Service companies: alarm system, lawn service, Snow removal ......
Subscriptions: newspaper, magazines, ...

Check your calendar: ensure all appointments have your new phone number and address

School: Register your Children in new schools if required

The Fridge:
Begin using up the food in the fridge, remember frozen food usually does not stay frozen during a move and use up perishables that will be hard to move.


Use your visits to measure and view your new home, will all furniture fit, it is a good time to get rid of furniture not required, do not move and pay for items only to discard on arrival

Final visit: a few days before closing: walk the entire property to ensure it looks the same as the day you purchased the home. Inform your lawyer immediately with any issues.

These are only a few examples of After the Accepted Offer, to get a better understanding of the process please call Michael Andrew Fenn to discuss your specific situation.

Moving Day

Planning ahead will limit the stress of moving Day, and organization will help it run smoothly!

Who has the key?: Your Lawyer will arrange for you to get the key, alarm codes, combinations to locks, garages, sheds,

Condo/Apartment: if moving from or to, make sure you have booked the freight/moving elevator and check that it is working the day before and the morning of the move

Medical: any medicine required over the next few days keep with you, fulfill prescription


Breakfast: have a good meal, you will need your energy. Cooler packed with food, snacks and drinks that do not require utensils, that do not require cooking.

Have all valuables with you, wallet, passports, plane tickets, hotel reservations, cell phone, contracts (movers), cell phone, Agreement of Purchase and Sale. Contact names and numbers,


The week before and the day before the move, confirm with the movers the time they will arrive. Make sure the actual movers have your cell number for the day, in case they get lost, or have any questions

Last to Leave:
Ensure all boxes and items are loaded onto the moving company’s truck. Once the home is empty, walk the entire home inside and outside before leaving. Ensure nothing is left behind, clean up all garbage, and leave the home in a broom swept condition, lock all doors and windows, lights off.

First to arrive:
Walk your entire new home inside and out to ensure all is well, any issues report to your lawyer immediately.

Check, Furnace, Running Water, Hydro, Stove, Fridge, Microwave, Dishwasher, Washer, Dryer, Air Conditioner (depending on Season)

Make sure all rooms are mapped according to your box labels. Check off all your items while receiving them into your new home from the moving company’s truck.

Protect Your Floors: 

Add Felt pads to the bottom of all furniture legs, to prevent floors from getting damaged


Depending on age, arrange baby sitter if required


Arrange for someone to look after your pets, unfortunately some pets get left behind, or wander away while the doors and yard gate is left open

Moving Day #1 Box, travels with you!! Essentials such as toiletries, Pajamas, change of clothes, medical requirements, Children’s sleeping aids, stuff toys and favorite blanket. Blankets, sheets, Pillows, Towels,

On arrival:
What needs to be done?

Smoke Alarms, ensure they are working, if not replace immediately, if they are working it is a good time to replace the batteries

Carbon Monoxide detectors, ensure they are working, if not replace immediately, if they are working it is a good time to replace the batteries

Fire Extinguishers, make sure you have them, check dates, ensure workable order

Alarm System, check if it is working, or confirm installation

Change Door locks

Fireplace: does the fireplace and the chimney require cleaning?

Eavestrough: do the eavestroughs require fixing, cleaning, are the down sprouts taking water away from the house

Duct work: does the duct work require cleaning?

Furnace:  check the filter(s), if dirty replace

Dryer: clean lint trap in dryer, and ductwork to exterior

Toilets: do you want new toilet seats?

Water filter change

Water softener check salt

Pool, check chemicals

These are only a few examples of Moving Day, to get a better understanding of the process please call Michael Andrew Fenn to discuss your specific situation.