Selling your home? Make Sure Your Home is Clean Clutter Free.
Is there a particular cleaning regimen we should follow before opening our home to buyers?

According to a recent article in The New York Times, there are certain steps you must follow in order to get top dollar for your home in this “Hot Market.”

Getting your home as clean as possible “is absolutely something of the greatest importance,” said Ginger Brokaw, a senior vice president at Town Residential real estate in Manhattan. “It really does pay off. I’ve seen the response of people walking into a home that hasn’t been cleaned, staged or prepared for showings, and one that has.” The difference, she added, is “night and day.”

Nevertheless, she said, she has worked with sellers who didn’t make enough of an effort. “If they had, I can guarantee that the price would have been better,” she said. “I’ve had apartments that were incredibly cluttered, and buyers were too distracted.”

Window Cleaning is Very Important

First on your list should be washing the windows, cleaning the floors, polishing the furniture and vacuuming the rugs throughout your home, Ms. Brokaw said, but the entry hall, kitchen and bathroom deserve special attention.

“The entryway is going to be your first point of reference when you walk in,” she said. “It has to be clean and simple.”

So don’t just mop and vacuum; make sure you put away shoes, coats and bags, too. (Try imagining your mom is standing beside you.)

“The kitchen has to be immaculate,” Ms. Brokaw said. “Your dishes should be in the dishwasher, and they should be done. You don’t want last night’s dinner smell.”

Beyond the bathroom, Ms. Fierman suggested cleaning all visible horizontal surfaces: window sills, picture frames, baseboards, even the inside shelves of kitchen and medicine cabinets. “We also recommend cleaning the walls around light-switch plates, where there are a lot of fingerprints,” she said. “And around doorknobs.”