If you’ve decided to sell your property, and you’d like to achieve the best possible price (who doesn’t!?) there are several clear steps you can take to maximising that final figure. These include decluttering, perfect presentation and preparing properly for viewings, but what if you need to thoroughly clean your house ready for sale?
If you’ve been cultivating that ‘lived in look’, then now is the time to take some tips from the ultimate cleaning influencer Mrs Hinch, and make a clean break on the housing market!
Having a spotlessly clean house on the market is hugely attractive to potential buyers, especially those who may be time-poor (families, people moving to the area to start a new job) and want to move in with as little hassle as possible. Also if your house has potential for holiday letting then cleaning it to a high standard will really flaunt this quality to buyers.
So, here is our guide to cleaning all those nooks and crannies in your home which really matter, making it look, smell and feel amazing to even the most pedantic of buyers.
With all the products mentioned below you must read and adhere to the manufacturers instructions, and store safely away from children.
Start by choosing a great all-over disinfectant
You’re going to be using this a lot, so find a smell you love! Just like cleaning queen Mrs Hinch we love Zoflora, a great all-round cleaner which is really versatile and has a 3 in 1 action formula that kills 99.9% of bacteria and viruses that can cause illness. Hello Spring is a green floral blend, based on wild spring flowers refreshed with uplifting citrus.
Just fill a spray bottled with a diluted solution (Zoflora is a concentrated disinfectant, so you’re cutting down on unnecessary plastic and packaging too) and get cleaning, or simply use as a air freshener just before viewings; smell has a massive impact on perception, so make sure potential buyers leave with a good impression.
Clean your windows thoroughly
If you’re cleaning your house ready for sale you’ve probably already thought of cleaning your window panes in and out! However, during spring and summer you may well have your windows open for viewings so the fittings will be on display too…
After being closed up all winter they can look a bit mucky, so a thorough clean is recommended, especially if you’d like potential buyers to spend a moment admiring that beautiful view.
Again Mrs Hinch has some useful advice and suggests a product called Elbow Grease – a multi-purpose cleaner which is perfect for windows. Spray it on and leave it to soak, before wiping the dirt away. You can finish your windows to perfection using Astonish Window and Glass Cleaner for that ‘buy me now’ sparkle!
Dust and polish to perfection
Surfaces free from dust and with a shiny coat of polish suggest you’re house proud and take good care of your property – something which is always reassuring for buyers who don’t want any nasty surprises.
It’s also one of the easier cleaning jobs – all you need to do is wave around your fluffy extendable duster (don’t forget those hard-to-reach spots, including the ceiling corners and around the light fittings) and change the duster head when it starts to look too grubby.
Once you’ve dusted every surface, grab your trusty yellow duster and go room to room with a can of Mr Sheen Multi Surface Polish; your house will be gleaming before you know it.
Everything but the kitchen sink…
The kitchen sink is another one of those key areas where you don’t want your prospective purchasers to worry about hygiene or bad smells. An intensive clean will take a little time but will be worth it.
Before you tackle the sink, you’ll need to be sure that your plug holes are clean and clear to prevent blockages and unpleasant odors. Sink and drain unblockers are expensive so a good alternative is Soda Crystals – simply pore a small cup down each drain or plug hole and follow with some hot water.
Now to clean that sink. Start with a disinfectant spray and squirt all over, then work the disinfectant in with a cloth before rinsing. Follow this up with a fresh cloth and a Cif spray for stainless steel, which you can use to bring a high shine and perfect finish to your lovely hygienic sink.
Banish the bad grout!
Grimy bathroom grout is another massive turn-off for property buyers who expect the highest standards for their home or holiday let. If you thought this was a tough job to tackle then think again, we’ve found a solution!
A cleaning paste called The Pink Stuff is one of the best products on the market for really tough jobs. You can use it for all sorts of things including BBQs and garden furniture.
For discoloured grout apply a thin layer of the paste using a soft cloth – you can apply it to the tiles too if they could also do with a clean. Leave it for ten minutes (if it’s a really tough patch of mould try putting the paste on with a cotton pad and leaving it stuck to the grout for a few hours) then gently scrub using a rough cloth. Rinse away with water and admire the results!
To keep your grout clean and white use Astonish Mould and Mildew Spray daily and your bathroom will always be ready for those viewings.
Time to tackle the dreaded oven…
Again, a clean oven suggests that you proactively care for your property, instilling confidence in buyers. And no one wants to picture themselves cleaning the oven the first day they move in!
Oven cleaning products can be particularly strong, so always use gloves and make sure your wrists and arms are covered as well as your hands.
A product called Oven Pride is a good one to try. It comes with a bag which you place your oven racks into, add about half of the cleaning solution and then leave for several hours out of reach of children or pets (overnight is best, and be sure to tilt and turn over a few times to make sure all areas have had a soaking). When you’re done open the bag with your gloves on and thoroughly rinse the racks in hot soapy water to remove any residue.
With the other half of the cleaning solution, simply pour it into the centre of the oven and then apply it to all surfaces, working from back to front. Leave it to soak for four hours and then remove the residue using a sponge or a cloth, and rinse with hot soapy water. Dispose of all product packaging and used cloths safely, and then run the oven for a little while before using.
Always read the leaflet when using these product to prevent any accidents happening.
More freshly-scented tips for viewings
When you’re cleaning your house ready for sale there are lots of easy ways to make it smell great. These tips are especially useful if you have pets – we love them but not everyone appreciates those odours!
- Tumble dryer sheets – designed to make your washing smell good when it comes out of the dryer, these sheets have other uses too! You can use them as draw liners, or place inside your sofa cushions and pillow cases to create a lovely aroma throughout your home. If you have artificial flowers you can also scrunch up one of these and put it in the middle of the display, simply replace every few weeks and appreciate the fresh smell!
- Febreze – it’s an obvious tip but a bit of air freshener goes a long way. Febreze Fabric Freshener is a good one to use on soft furnishings.
- Use a bathroom cleaner with a fresh scent. It’s great if your bathroom looks clean, but even better if it smells nice and fresh. Flash Bathroom with Febreze Liquid is ideal for quickly dissolving grease and dirt to leave your surfaces brilliantly clean, shiny, and freshly scented.
And finally, clean the garden furniture!
Especially if you are cleaning your house ready for sale in spring or summer, your prospective buyers will want to imagine themselves outside enjoying the Cornish lifestyle. We recommend spending some time dusting down the BBQ and giving the garden furniture a good clean. Cif have a really good range of outdoor cleaning products which will save you a lot of elbow grease…
- Cif Outdoor Rust Spray is perfect for restoring the sparkle to your outdoor surfaces as it can cut through rust and removes dirt. For tough rust, spray it on then leave it for a few minutes before rinsing. Don’t use this on marble, natural stones or painted wood.
- Cif Outdoor Mould & Moss Spray is formulated with bleach for effective cleaning, and is designed to remove mould stains on outdoor surfaces, leaving a stunning finish. Test the product on a small area before use, then spray from a distance of 10-15cm. Leave the product to act for 1 minute for light stains or 5 minutes or more for tough stains. Rinse and wipe – you made need to repeat the process a few times to get the best possible result.
- Cif Outdoor Multipurpose Cleaner to simply use as you would an indoor cream cleaner – the results are great!
- CIF Outdoor BBQ Cleaner to restore the sparkle of that BBQ, try applying this to cold surfaces until completely covered. Leave it to work for up to 15 minutes for lightly soiled areas, 30 minutes for medium-soiled areas, and 30-60 minutes for heavily soiled areas. Rinse the surface thoroughly afterwards, and admire your shiny clean BBQ!
Your home may now be looking so beautiful that you don’t want to sell anymore! However if you are ready to go on the market give us a call – we’d love to help you secure the best price for that shiny clean home!