Katchart DIY DVDs
For Design and Decorating of Homes and Property
Staging to sell  /  Defining to set up  /  Redefining to make over

Katchart Design & Decorating Tips

Introduction: Reproduced below is the Realtors Association checklist of pre-staging activities to get a property ready for sale. Property sellers should review this checklist and apply it, as appropriate, to their property, before staging or listing. All Katchart DIY (Do It Yourself) Design & Dcecorating DVDs, including STAGING FOR SELLERS, focus on design and decorating for the staging) presentation after these (applicable) pre-staging activities have been done.


Carpet & Flooring Improvements:

  • If you have pets hire a professional to deodorize carpets
  • If needed, replace any worn carpet, steam clean thoroughly, install new neutralcolored carpet if need be with a thick padding so prospective buyers feel comfortable as they walk on your floors
  • Make sure carpets are secure. Stretch and tack down any loose or curling carpet, vacuum/comb carpet and make free of pet hair
  • If you decide to replace a linoleum floor, choose a neutral color that will have wide appeal
  • If your home has hardwood floors with roomsize rugs, get the hardwood into its best condition with fresh nonslip floor polish or other coating to make it shimmer Mop and vacuum floors
  • Replace worn out vent covers
  • Thoroughly clean linoleum floors in kitchen and bathroom

Interior Painting Improvements:

  • Add new wallpaper if the wallpaper is torn or withered, make sure it adheres to the wall, repair any cracks in ceiling/walls
  • All woodwork like stairwell railings and doors should be repainted and/or stained Have leaks repaired & watermarks covered, if needed, repaint faded, worn or stained interior walls
  • The windows should be washed and stain free, window frames should be painted if necessary
  • Tone down bright room colors by painting them white or a neutral color

Clean & DeClutter Improvements:

  • Appliances should be cleaned inside and out, remove small appliances from kitchen counters to give a look of spaciousness
  • Clean all curtains, drapes and blinds, including windowsills, inside of all kitchen and bathroom cabinets, neatly organize items on shelves, ensure all doors, cabinets and drawers can open completely without any blockage
  • Clean the entryway carefully; it creates the buyers first interior impression of your home, stairwells and corridors clutterfree, mop and sweep all floors
  • Doors should be oiled and squeakfree, clean or purchase new front door accessories
  • Dry clean your drapes
  • Empty trash cans, recycling bins and ash trays
  • Exterminate any insect problems
  • Get rid of odors (pet, food)
  • Have a garage sale before the home is listed
  • Hire a professional cleaning service, once every few weeks while the house is on the market
  • If needed, remove clutter by renting offsite storage space
  • Keep baseboards clean and dusted, bookshelves, entertainment units must be organized neatly, clothing hung neatly and shoes organized, organize closets
  • Screens should be clean and vacuumed, shower curtains fresh and free from mildew
  • Make bathrooms sparkle; sinks, toilets and tubs should be immaculate
  • Polish all interior woodwork

Kitchen & Bathroom Improvements:

  • If the appliances are included with the sale of your home, make sure they are operating and have proper documentation such as warranties and repair information, if appliances are dated or not functioning, consider replacing
  • If there are missing or damaged tiles, have them replaced
  • Retouch or repaint kitchens and bathrooms if the color is dated or the paint quality is poor
  • Make sure sinks are clean and stainfree
  • Repair damaged countertops, sinks or tubs, make sure there are no leaky faucets
  • Recaulk damaged caulk on shower, sinks, tub or toilet, clean tile grout and make stainfree
  • Paint, touchup or refinish kitchen cabinetry
  • Tighten or replace loose doorknobs or cabinet pulls, sticking doors and drawers and wobbly hinges
  • Replace toilet seat

Exterior Painting Improvements:

  • Paint any doors, doorframes, exterior fixtures, mailbox, shutters, window ledges, any rust spots or streaks on downspouts or outdoor railing
  • Paint or clean front door, garage door, restain or paint fence if it's peeling or dirty
  • Polish door handles and knockers
  • Repair any damage to chimney, as well as holes in gutters and any separations from eaves, replace or repair shingles or tiles missing from the roof
  • Sand and repaint areas with blistering or peeling paint, remove oil spots from garage area
  • Seal cracks on porch and remove any standing water if concrete. If wood, secure railings and seal or paint as necessary
  • Straighten and clean antenna

Yard Improvements:

  • Add colorful plants or flowers near front door and porch area, put new or gently used welcome mat at the doorway
  • Repair damaged, rusty or bent fence; paint or stain if necessary
  • If you have an awning for the patio, make sure that it is also free of debris and that there are no signs of tear or worn material. Replace if necessary
  • Keep the firewood neatly stacked and trash area clean and organized, walks, steps and driveway obstaclefree
  • Mow, trim, fertilize and water lawn, rake fallen leaves, prune trees and bushes, trim or remove weeds, dead or dying plants or flowers, resod bare spots on lawn, power wash deck
  • Remove unnecessary items such as debris, gardening equipment, personal items on deck and porch, any signs outside such as Beware of Dog need to be taken down.

Lighting Improvements:

  • Repair sticky windows which do not open At night, make sure all outside lighting works, turn on porch light and outdoor lighting
  • Clean all switch plates, windows inside and out, as well as existing shutters, blinds or drapes, remove leaves and other debris from skylights
  • Install dimming switches in common rooms such as dining rooms and living rooms to allow you to create lighting for different occasions
  • Install new window treatments if those you have are damaged or dated
  • Keep curtains open and use natural light as much as possible
  • Prune outside trees to allow natural light inside
  • Turn on inside lights so home is well lit during showing, increase the wattage of bulbs to maximum possible wattage
  • Wipe all light fixtures with a rag and cleaning solution

Plumbing & Electrical Improvements:

  • All drains should be clean and free flowing, if needed, hire a plumber to replace badly rusted and corroded plumbing pipes, toilets should be in good working order
  • Clean up, paint or replace old plumbing fixtures in bathrooms; all bathroom and kitchen faucets are in good working order, remove mildew stains and repair any loose, crumbling caulk or grout around tile and tub areas
  • Have your well or septic inspected or repaired
  • Inspect, clean and change filter of furnace
  • All smoke and burglar alarms are functional
  • Repair broken doorbell
  • Service sprinkler system

Staging Improvements:

  • Clean fireplace and prepare with logs for display
  • Clean out the entry closet and put only a few hangers so that the buyer can visualize winter coats Consider lighting up the fireplace during the colder months
  • Hang artwork on the walls, as well as extra clean towels in the bathroom, a fresh vase of flowers on the kitchen table and bathroom area to add appeal
  • Have beds made, open drapes to allow light in
  • Lock pets up away from home during showings
  • Play music during open houses and put cedar chips inside the closets to freshen up closed areas
  • Remove all unnecessary articles in basement or attic, if needed, put large furniture and other items in offsite storage
  • All magnets and notes from refrigerator need to be removed, as well as personal possessions, like photos, trophies and mementos to minimize clutter
  • Set the dining room table for a dinner party Stage garage
  • clean up oily floors, straighten tools and other equipment.