Moving is stressful. Trying to sell a house before moving adds even more stress. The best case scenario for surviving a PCS comes down to selling a house quickly. While a lot depends on the housing market, here are some ways to help your house look better than most on the market. Whether the market is hot or cold, these tips can help bring in an offer faster. 

3 Tips to Selling a House

First Impressions 

Never underestimate the power of a first impression when it comes to selling your house. Potential buyers may make a decision about whether or not they are interested in your home before they even step inside. That means online photos and curb appeal can be potential deal breakers. 

Curb appeal influences the buyers’ potential interest when approaching your house. Essentially, they are asking themselves if this is a welcoming home, and if they could see themselves living there. Here are some essential elements of making a good first impression:

  • Make sure your home exterior is free of clutter. Yards should be tidy, hoses should be stored neatly, and toys and sports equipment should be put away. 
  • The exterior should look fresh and welcoming. Touch up all paint, power wash your driveway and garage and give your front door a fresh coat of paint in a welcoming color if needed. If the weather is nice, be sure to have some pretty flowers in a pot and a new welcome mat. 
  • Clean windows and turn on porch lights for evening showings.

Beauty on the Inside

Showing your house means finding the right balance between depersonalizing your home without making it feel cold and sterile. The good news is many of these ideas can help you get a jump start on the packing process. If you’re not sure where to start on the inside, try incorporating these simple tips.

  • Neutralize your wall colors. You may love bright orange, but most potential buyers will prefer something more neutral. Also, touch up all paint and trim. 
  • Pack up your family photographs and replace them with artwork or leave the spaces blank. 
  • Replace all light bulbs and anything broken in the house.
  • Clear away clutter by packing knickknacks and replacing them with one or two larger items like decorative vases and bowls. 
  • Resist the temptation to throw everything in your closets. Potential buyers may get the impression that your home lacks storage space. Pack up anything you don’t use regularly and put boxes in a storage unit if necessary. 
  • Remove excess stuff and even some furniture if necessary. If your dining room is small, take a leaf out of a larger table to create an appearance of more space.
  • If possible, don’t show an unfurnished house. Homes with furniture show better. 

Show Ready

Chances are, you have a pretty good idea of what potential buyers will see as pros and cons of your house. They might love the large living room, but question if the kitchen is big enough. Keeping your house show ready is a lot of work. Here are a few tips to help save your sanity and help your house sell quickly so the work can end. 

  • Keep Windex or baby wipes under every sink for last minute clean ups. Nothing says “lived in” like kids’ toothpaste on the counter. 
  • Leave the lights on and open all blinds and curtains to let natural light in. If you have a room that’s lacking natural light, try hanging a decorative mirror on the wall to reflect light instead. 
  • Avoid cooking something with a strong smell on the day of a showing. Use lightly scented plugins before a showing.  
  • Hide kitchen appliances in cupboards to give the appearance of a larger kitchen if you don’t have enough counter space.
  • Make sure toys and baby items like high chairs are stowed away. Hide pet items since animals can be a turn off for some potential buyers. 
  • Do one last quick sweep and mop of the floors in high traffic areas before leaving the house. 

Sometimes we are so used to living with our stuff and we lose an objective perspective. Before listing your house, ask your realtor or a friend to be honest with you about what you need to do. If you feel overwhelmed, try asking around for a recommendation for a professional home stager. 

Also, be sure to check out our new Military Moms Blog Real Estate Guide to help with your next move. And for more tips on selling and staging, check out Michelle’s post here.

What’s helped you sell your home quickly? We’d love to hear from you!


  1. Thank you so much for this post – a real guide for anyone who wants to quicly sell their house. Decluttering the home is essential for me and really important for first impression.

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