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Showing Your Home: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

Nobody says that selling your house is a fun experience. The constant tidying, cleaning, organizing & being asked to leave for showings is both physically & emotionally exhausting. Your hopes are raised the moment you get a request for a showing & you eagerly anticipate the email or call from your agent telling you that the buyers are interested!

I don't have much advice to make the process more enjoyable, but I do have suggestions on how to make things a little easier in order to help you home get sold faster & for you to have an easier experience throughout the process. Everything involves prepping your home prior to putting it on the market.


As a realtor, we will never give our personal opinion on your choice of decor as it relates to our personal taste. We are giving you advice based on our marketing experience, so please, don't take it to heart when we suggest that you remove certain items.

Knick-Knacks, Tchotchkes & Collections as decor. While all these items have special meaning to you, they will not to a buyer. Clear the tables, counters, ledges, & shelving to allow the house to be shown, not your collections. Put these items away for safe keeping.

Animals as decor. Living in Wisconsin we see many taxidermy animals & while it may not bother some buyers, it can certainly deter others from even entering the room. Take them down & put them away for safe keeping.

Family photos as decor. What happens when you walk into a home covered in photos? You look at them. One by one. And you don't look at the house because you're distracted. I am not saying that your family photos aren't lovely & beautiful. However, our job is to have your whole home showcased & that is very difficult to do when a buyer can't focus on the actual home, only on the photos throughout.

Weaponry as decor. I'm not going to touch this topic with a ten-foot pole. I'm simply going to tell you to take these items down & please lock them away in a safe. These items can be distracting, a safety issue and/or a political issue for buyers. Let's not allow any of this to surface while showing your home.

Don't give a buyer an excuse to not like your house based on your decor - let your home shine & allow the buyers to imagine themselves living in that space. An almost impossible task if your personal belongings are everywhere.


If it's valuable either financially, sentimentally or both, put it away, ideally in a safe, safety deposit box or take it with you when you leave each day. Theft happens and we want you to make sure your valuable items are safe. This list includes but is not limited to:

  • Jewelry

  • Important documents: birth certificates, passports, financial information & your checkbook

  • Medicine - if it has a street value, put it away

  • Electronics


Toy basket

Help yourselves out by buying bins to throw toys, magazines, charging cords, TV remotes & other items into on short notice. This is an fast way to tidy your house for those last minute showings.

Complete these tasks PRIOR to listing your home & having photos taken, so it's done & you're always ready when a buyer comes calling!

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