Room-by-Room Guide to Declutter Your House Before Selling

Clutter—it’s a word that makes many of us shudder, and we like it even less when we’re preparing to sell our home. However, mastering clutter is one of the best things you can do to help buyers see your house as a place they can call home. Clutter and piles make spaces look smaller and can hide your home’s more attractive features.

If you’re looking to sell your home this year, why not start it off right with a resolution to de-clutter? We know that this can feel daunting, so we’ve broken it down into a room-by-room guide. When you approach de-cluttering in smaller chunks it’s easier—plus, we’re sure you’ll be so pleased with the results that you’ll look forward to getting through the whole list.canstockphoto37528235

Entryway & Hallways

The entryway is the first thing a potential buyer will see, so make sure it’s welcoming and not overwhelming.

  • Corral coats, scarves, and other outerwear
  • Store shoes and boots out of sight
  • Remove mail, newspapers, and other clutter (or keep them neatly displayed in an attractive organizer)
  • Eliminate random clutter in hallways
  • Tastefully display art, candles, or other decor to accentuate your home’s positives
  • Remove excessive family photos and other personal items



Often called the heart of the home, the kitchen sees a lot of action. Make sure all an interested buyer sees is how they can make their gourmet dreams come true.

  • Keep counters neat and tidy
  • Never leave dishes in the sink or dripping on the rack
  • Store small appliances in cupboards, or box away for moving if not needed
  • Box up extra items from crowded cupboards and drawers, so you can nicely display your best items (buyers will open doors and look!)
  • Organize all cupboards and displays
  • Remove photos and schoolwork from the fridge
  • Put items that point to trouble (like drain cleaner or ant powder) out of sight
  • Place sponges, scrubbers, and towels in a bin under the sink



Bedrooms are supposed to be our sanctuaries, but too often they become dumping spots for everything that has nowhere else to go. Turn yours back into a sanctuary before buyers take a look.

  • Clear out off-season clothing from drawers and closets—an overstuffed closet appears smaller.
  • Tidy your bedside table and remove any medications, personal care items, or cluttered charging stations
  • Select only one or two family photos to display
  • Make the bed every day—and spruce up existing (or splurge!) on new linens, duvet, and pillows to make the room look fresh and appealing
  • Dust any ceiling fans and other hard-to-reach nooks to make sure the room glows


Living & Family Rooms

Make sure potential buyers don’t have to look past piles of clutter to envision themselves relaxing in your space.

  • Clear out piles of magazines, newspapers, books, and hobby materials
  • Make any displays on mantels or tables simple, clean, and devoid of personal effects and photos—less is more
  • Make sure the room has ample lighting day and night, rearrange light fixtures or add a lamp if needed
  • Check drapes and blinds for dust and get them cleaned, if needed
  • Corral remotes and other electronic gadgets in a cupboard, drawer, or attractive bin or basket
  • If you have little ones, organize toys into one section of the room and use bins or other attractive containers to keep them under control



Just because these rooms are functional, it doesn’t mean they can’t be beautiful.

  • Clean out your drawers and cabinets—remove any outdated or unused toiletries, medicine, or personal care equipment
  • Tastefully display only the essentials in the medicine cabinet or drawers
  • Pack up rarely used perfumes and jewelry
  • Add fresh drawer liners
  • Organize cleaning items in a safe, unobtrusive spot
  • Remove multiple soap and shampoo bottles from shower shelves
  • Get rid of damp towels, washcloths, loofahs, etc.
  • Make sure towels are displayed neatly on a shelf or in a basket


Laundry Room

A well-appointed laundry room can be the difference between like and love for some home buyers. Make the right impression in yours.

  • Don’t leave any laundry (clean or dirty) in piles or otherwise on display
  • If you leave out items to air dry, make sure to put them away before a tour
  • Neatly organize detergents, spot removers, and other supplies
  • Put function on display by arranging equipment, detergents, drying racks, and laundry baskets in an attractive manner that show how easy it is to access everything
  • Wipe down the washer and dryer—make sure no lint or dust is showing
  • Throw lint and other items like dryer sheets in a trash can with a lid


Basement or Garage

These are places where we like to hide things that are unsightly or have no other place to call home. But you want potential buyers to see possibility, not defeat, when they enter yours.

  • Properly dispose of opened cans of paint (unless buyers could use it for touch-ups), stain, pest repellent, and other chemicals
  • Organize tools and box up large items if not currently in use
  • Sort through all those old boxes of what-nots and donate unneeded items—organize the rest in neatly-stacked bins
  • Throw out anything that’s musty or shows signs of mold and mildew
  • Dust everything
  • Organize sports equipment neatly, storing as much as possible in bins
  • Add shelves to better corral miscellaneous odds and ends

De-cluttering isn’t fun, but you’ll be happy you did it when you’re calling the moving truck. Get obstacles out of the way so buyers can see what a gem your home is!

We Bust the 3 Biggest Myths About Selling Your Home in the Winter Part 3

canstockphoto37273624This is the third and final installment in our series about selling your home in winter.

Waiting until spring to sell your house is one of the biggest misconceptions in the world of real estate. We’ve already busted myths about selling during the winter and shared the top reasons why selling in the winter is easier than you think.

Now we’re going to focus on those home features that were custom-made to be shown off during the winter. Not everything looks better under the bright rays of the summertime sun. If you’re unsure how to make your property sparkle under winter skies, check out these features that show better in the winter than at any other time.


Energy Efficiency

This is one of the most important aspects of any home, and if you’ve invested in maximizing efficiency and cutting down energy costs, now is the time to brag about it. We’re not saying you should “accidentally” leave your latest heating bill lying around so potential buyers can see it, but depending on the numbers—why not?

If showing off your low power bills is too forward for your taste, make up a neat list that details all the energy efficient upgrades and changes you’ve made to the house. Include average heating and cooling bills, so buyers can take those discounted costs into consideration when weighing your home against others. If you’ve taken measures to reduce your home’s carbon footprint, include that information as an extra highlight.


Architectural Flourishes

Bannisters, columns, arches, and walkways are custom-made for winter decorations. Tasteful twinkling lights and evergreen garlands draw attention to these architectural features that may be overshadowed in summer by trim green lawns and flowerbeds. If you have special light fixtures or lampposts, add a colorful bow or sprig of holly to draw attention. These types of flourishes look good all winter long—not just during the holidays.

If it snows a lot in your neighborhood, play that up by creating a winter wonderland in your front yard, or on the porch. Create an image of cozy togetherness, where potential buyers can envision themselves enjoying a hot cup of cocoa or rolling up an impressive snowman to watch over the house.


Simple Upkeep

Home maintenance is something that potential buyers often have on their minds. If your home is easy to take care of during the winter, be sure to let buyers know it. Keep all driveways, walkways, and steps free of snow and ice—and keep snowblowers, shovels, and ice melt tucked out of sight.

If you present a neat and safe winter appearance, buyers won’t get distracted by how long the driveway is or the number of steps leading up to the front door. Make sure there are no leftover messes from fall cleanup. If snow is scarce, add a layer of mulch across all flowerbeds to make a tidy, well-kept impression on potential buyers.


Entertaining Spaces

Whether it’s a wide, open backyard perfect for a family picnic or an open floor plan that just screams holiday get-togethers, make it easy for buyers to see these entertainment perks. If you’re showing your home around the holidays, set up the space as you would for an intimate family dinner or a larger holiday mixer. Set out place settings or arrange furniture into conversational groupings and nooks.

To show off outdoor spaces that might be covered in a blanket of snow, display photos of summer festivities. Pick snapshots that feature outdoor dining, family barbecues, or other warm-weather festivities. If you have award-winning roses or an appealing summer garden, make sure those summertime bonuses aren’t left out.


Final Thoughts

Winter can seem like a tough time to show off your home’s greatest assets, but some things look better under a soft covering of snow or in the warm light of a fire. Identify what makes your house stand out when the days are shorter, and get ready to join the winter housing market. It’s the perfect time for your little gem to shine.

We Bust the 3 Biggest Myths About Selling Your Home in the Winter Part 2

canstockphoto17388076This is part two of our series on why winter is a great time to sell your home.

Last time we looked at three of the biggest myths that keep people from listing their house during the winter. We took down the false idea that no one is looking to move in the winter and talked about how to capitalize on the curb appeal of snow and holiday décor.   

Today, we’re going to explore the top five reasons selling in winter is easier than you think. If you’re ready to put your house on the market, but thought you had to wait until spring flowers start peeking through the soil, here are five reasons that should change your mind.


  1. You Can Seal the Deal Faster

Few people know this, but home loans processed in the winter often close faster than during other times of the year. With fewer homes on the market, mortgage lenders aren’t juggling as many clients. And even though lenders always give every client the time and attention they need, it’s easier to move ahead quickly when there are fewer loans to process. That means that during the winter, lenders are ready to quickly process your buyers’ financing as soon as they’re ready to move in. It also means your buyers are more likely to be pre-approved.


  1. Buyers Are Highly Motivated

Many of us avoid slogging about in winter’s slushy, icy conditions, and the same goes for home buyers. Folks who are ready to don their boots and scarves to check out your home are highly motivated to make a purchase. The good news for you is that you’re more likely to be dealing with potential buyers who are pre-approved and ready to sign on the dotted line. Another reason winter buyers tend to be more motivated is the common existence of external deadlines like a job relocation or the need to get kids settled into a new school quickly.


  1. You’ll Get to Deal With Fewer Showings

With a smaller number of people shopping for homes in the winter, you’re less likely to run into “window shoppers.” Along with being highly motivated, winter buyers aren’t going to trek out into the weather without good reason. You’ll have fewer last-minute calls for showings, which means selling your home in winter won’t take over your holidays or disrupt other winter festivities.  


  1. Negotiations Are Easier

External deadlines and fewer homes to compete with are two of the biggest factors that can make a positive impact on contract negotiations. Because buyers are motivated, they want to move fast when they find a home they like. This results in offers that are closer to listing price. According to a Redfin study, homes listed during winter sold one week faster and for 1.1% more money than homes sold during other seasons. In fact, homes listed in the winter sold in the fewest amount of days—26—compared to every other time of year. And faster sales means less nitpicking and back-and-forth during negotiations.


  1. You’ll Get Undivided Agent Attention

No matter when you list your home, your agent is dedicated to providing top-notch service. But when there are fewer homes on the market, it stands to reason that your agent will have more time to spend on your listing. This can only work in your favor, ensuring that your property rises to the top of the list of homes that are ready to welcome a new family during the winter months.


Selling your home is always a big decision—and it can feel overwhelming and risky. Understanding how a winter listing can work in your favor is one way to settle those house-selling nerves. If you’re ready to take the plunge, we’re ready to make your home the toast of the winter housing market.


This was the second in a three-part series about selling your home in winter. Watch for our final installment that talks about property features you can show off when you sell your home during winter.

Tell-Tale Signs You’ve Outgrown Your Home

canstockphoto7138312Once upon a time, Realtors came up with the term “starter home” to describe houses perfect for newlyweds and small families. Although these starter homes are great, families quickly outgrow them due to various reasons. Whether you’re out of storage space, feeling cramped or just need a change of pace these are the tell-tale signs that it’s time to move on.

New Additions

Often families outgrow their homes because they are expecting little bundles of joy. The addition of children or even pets can easily begin bursting the seams of your perfect newlywed home. When bedrooms have filled up and toys have taken over the entire house it’s time to upgrade to a larger a home.


Outgrowing your home usually sounds like you need more space, but sometimes you might benefit from downsizing. As couples age and their children leave the nest, a home that was once the right size might become too large and difficult to maintain. Choosing to downsize into a more comfortable space could also help stretch retirement dollars.

Not enough space

As a family grows in numbers so does accompanying furniture collections. Families often opt for over-sized pieces of furniture to accommodate everyone in the home plus guests. These large pieces of furniture take up a lot of space. They easily start to crowd a home and make it feel cramped or small. Many consider upgrading to a larger home to accommodate them and all of their belongings.

Complicated Entertaining

Many families like to entertain their friends and loved ones. For these families entertaining becomes a big factor when deciding to upgrade and purchase a new home. As you grow, you may end up hosting a large holiday party and the need for more space will become more imminent. It might be time to move on if you find out that your current home doesn’t share you sense of hospitality.

Your Finances are in order

Many families move on simply because they are in a better financial situation to do so. A recent job promotion or inheritance can allow you and your family to purchase a larger home or move into that perfect neighborhood. Your improved finances provide the opportunity to live comfortably and enjoy the space that you worked so hard to earn.

7 Tips for Moving into Your New Home

move-2481718_640Adjusting to new life changes and getting back into a normal routine presents challenges. Which is even more true for adapting to a new life in a new house. Whether it is a preowned home or new build, this list will help smooth the transition of your life’s most significant change: moving into a new home.

  1. Change the locks

When the closing is over and you have gotten the keys to your new house, it’s time to buy and install new locks on all exterior doors. Previous owners, realtors and anyone that provided maintenance on the house could all have a set of keys to the current locks.

  1. Change your address

First start by contacting the local post office and ask what you need to do for a change of address. Next contact all creditors, magazine subscriptions and anyone else that you could miss an issue or bill.

  1. Set Up Utilities

This can be as simple as contacting the previous owners for the utilities companies’ contact information when you’re moving into a preowned home. You will want to have the basic services in your name before you move in these include electricity, gas, water, sewer, garbage, cable, internet and possibly telephone.

  1. Locate Necessary Features (main breaker, water shut offs, smoke detectors, etc)

In case of an emergency, you need to know where the main circuit breaker is located along with the location of the water shut offs. Make sure that you understand the labeling on the breaker. Label it yourself before moving in if it is unlabeled.

  1. Clean, Clean and more Clean

One you have the utilities turned on, you are ready to start freshening up your new home. Some folks may leave the home clean for you and some may not. In either case, it’s always a good idea to wipe out cupboards, sweep and mop floors, wash the windows and baseboards.

  1. New Paint

Once you have everything spic-and-span, you can apply a fresh coat of paint. This will be much easier to do before all of your furniture and belongings are moved in. Remember that you can always hire professionals if you are short on time.

  1. New contact information

When you are all done prepping and moving into your new home you can send out new contact information to family and friends. You also can invite everyone over for a house-warming party to show off your new home!

All About Purchase Agreements

The purchase agreement is a legal arrangement between a potential buyer and the property’s owner or seller. To streamline the process, it is best to keep records of everything and to stick to a pre-determined schedule.canstockphoto434622small


An unbiased third party such as a title company or an attorney will be selected to act as the closing agent. The unbiased agent holds all funds in escrow and researches the complete record history of the property. This ensures that the title in question is free and clear of restrictions.


Once the seller accepts your offer you will need a licensed property inspector to check the property for issues including the roof, structure, HVAC, plumbing, electrical and more. One of two things can happen depending on the outcome of the inspections. If each step in the process is successfully met, you move to closing or after review request for renegotiation of terms and price can be made.


After the inspections are met and you move closer to closing, your lender will require an appraisal to help determine the amount you can borrow to purchase your home. Appraisers are specialized in determining the value of properties based on a combination of square footage measurements, building costs, recent sales of comparable properties, operating income and more.

After the appraisal is completed successfully completed you can close.


Finally, the closing agent will furnish all parties with a settlement statement that summarizes the details of the purchase agreement. All parties including the closing agent will read and sign the documents and this completes the process.

After closing is complete you will need to get all home services installed and utilities turned on or switched over to your name. Now you are all set to move in to your new home!

Things Happening in Salt Lake County, Utah

Salt Lake County is a county located in the U.S. state of Utah. As of the 2010 census, the population was 1,029,655, making it the most populous county in Utah. Its county seat and largest city is Salt Lake City, the state capital. The county was created in 1850.

Salt Lake County occupies the Salt Lake Valley, as well as parts of the surrounding mountains, the Oquirrh Mountains to the west and the Wasatch Range to the east (essentially the entire watershed of the Jordan River north of the Traverse Mountains). In addition, the northwestern section of the county includes part of the Great Salt Lake. The county is noted for its ski resorts; Salt Lake City won the bid to host the 2002 Winter Olympics.

Salt Lake County is the central county of the Salt Lake City, UT Metropolitan Statistical Area.canstockphoto22455383

This article will list the hottest events and happenings taking place in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County’s largest city. There are numerous events both locals and tourists can enjoy over the upcoming weeks and months in Salt Lake City. The list of these top events are as follows.

  • Enquiring Minds: Fourteen Centuries Of Questions And Answers
  • 60 Miles For 60 Years Challenge
  • Spring Orchid Show
  • Floralography – An Intimate Look At Flowers
  • Preschool Discovery Days – Roots, Shoots, Springs And Sprouts
  • Commemorative Air Force Museum
  • Alien Worlds And Androids Exhibit
  • Green River Rock & Mineral Show
  • Zonta Spring Gala & Fundraiser
  • Spring 2017 Celebration Of The Hand Exhibition
  • Paul & Silvia Davis Exhibits
  • Swaner’s Craft Sunday
  • Climbing Wall
  • Aauw Fundraiser Speaker
  • Small Wonders

In conclusion, Salt Lake City is a place that is much more than meets the eye. Its fantastic locations, places, eateries, and much more make it a go-to location for many vacationers and also almost every local living in the city.

All of these events listed above can be accessed by almost every person. One of the few restriction might be the age limit, other than that these events have been designed to attract people of all age and tastes.

This handy guide can help curious vacationers to make up their mind quickly and effectively. In many cases, tourists have so many options to choose from that they are hesitant to pick the right one and it is often not their wrongdoing. They usually are not guided properly and miss out on the real fun events and occasions.

Salt Lake City is one of the most famous locations in the United States as it provides entertainment of the highest order and makes sure that no party goer or tourist is left disappointed and frustrated.

This fun guide is designed to showcase the real beauty of the city that is Salt Lake City. In the end, it’s the local events that are implemented by sweet and generous residents that truly show what the city is all about. It highlights its core values and ideas that make it so great and desirable.

Tiny House Movement Q & A

In today’s fast-paced, complicated life many look for ways to simplify. Some even advocate that moving into a smacanstockphoto10371016ller home means having a bigger life.

So what is tiny living?

In a nutshell, the tiny house movement is a way of life. People adjust to smaller spaces and fewer possessions in order to save money while focusing on building relationships and lasting experiences.

What is a tiny house?

The average home size in 2016 ranged from 2,400 to 2,600 square feet. Tiny homes typically offer anywhere from 65 to 400 square feet.

How much do they cost?

A relatively high-end tiny house costs around $20,000 to $30,000 to build yourself. These numbers include buying a brand new trailer, professional construction plans, appliances and other brand new materials.

How to build for less?

  • Use recycled materials
  • Use less expensive materials and appliances that are still reliable of course
  • Complete all labor yourself with the help of family and friends
  • Avoid costly mistakes by doing your due diligence when researching and designing
  • Be patient and find a good deal on the perfect trailer instead of purchasing a new one

Benefits of a tiny home?

  • Less time cleaning
  • Less time spent maintaining
  • No clutter means it’s easier to find your belongings
  • Monthly bills are cheaper
  • Cozy and easy to manage living space
  • Better for the environment


Do you want to know more about accommodating families with tiny home living? Check out this blog from

Questions You Must Ask When Searching For Your New Home

When it comes to finding your dream home, it can take some time to find the perfect place just for you. There are so many factors which go into finding the right home and the home buying process. As you begin your due diligence in researching the area and getting know your potential neighbors, finding the right schools, hiring a real estate agent, and making sure the home you fall in love with is in your price range (check out this great calculator tool).


Before you move forward towards homeownership, take some time to chat with a loan officer to find out what kind of mortgage you can afford. If you’re not sure you can afford a home, you should also take some time to chat with a mortgage officer. There are various loans you may qualify for so make sure you get pre-approved first.

As you continue down the path towards homeownership, ask yourself these questions—

  • Why is the home for sell?
  • Are there some issues with the home you should be aware of?
  • What do you like most about the neighborhood? What don’t you like? Can you leave with it?
  • How long has the home been vacant? Why?
  • What is the water pressure like? Insulation in the attic?
  • How many drawers are in the kitchen? Is there enough counter space for you?
  • Do all the electrical outlets work?
  • Is the front door well insulated?

Your home is a place you can take pride in. Take some time now to find the best fit for you, something you can see yourself living in. Write down all the questions you have, what you can’t live without, what you’re willing to compromise on, and so on.

As you move down this path, let us help you find your dream home. We are here to answer all your questions and to assist you in finding your new home.

Origins of Thanksgiving

We all know the story of how the pilgrims and Native Americans “broke bread” at one of the very first Thanksgivings. They shared the first autumn harvest feast in 1621 with many more to come. We can learn more about the origins by first examining Thanksgiving at Plymouth and then discovering when Thanksgiving became an official holiday.



The Mayflower, a small ship, left Plymouth England in September 1620. The ship carried 102 passengers consisting of a variety of religious separatists seeking a new home to freely practice their faith. The New World promise of wealth and prosperity lured others aboard. The Pilgrims settled across Massachusetts Bay one month later.

The first year proved to be brutal for the colonists. Many suffered from exposure, scurvy and disease outbreaks. Governor William Bradford organized a celebratory feast in November 1621 after the Pilgrims’ first successful corn harvest. He invited a group of the colony’s Native American allies. This gathering is considered to be America’s first Thanksgiving even though those words may not have been used at the time.


National Holiday

The evolution of a Thanksgiving holiday began during the American Revolution. In fact, the Continental Congress designated one or more days of thanks per year. In 1789, the first Thanksgiving proclamation by the national government of the United States was issued by George Washington. He wished for Americans to express their gratitude for the favorable outcome of the war for independence and successful ratification of U.S. Constitution.

New York with several other states following suite officially adopted an annual Thanksgiving holiday in 1817. However, each of the states celebrated on different days. Sarah Josepha Hale, author of nursery rhyme “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” launched campaign to establish Thanksgiving as a national holiday in 1827. In the midst of the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln answered her request in 1863 and scheduled Thanksgiving for the final Thursday of every November.

Official Thanksgiving was celebrated the last Thursday of November annually until 1939. President Franklin Roosevelt attempted to move the holiday up a week to stimulate retail sales during the Great Depression. Roosevelt’s plan was met with fierce, passionate opposition. He eventually and reluctantly signed a bill making the final Thursday the official date for the Thanksgiving holiday.