Listing & Living in Your House

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Let’s face it, moving can be very hard. It’s true that we have a lot of tips to make moving simpler, but lately, we’ve been chatting with our customers who are trying to keep sane while listing their homes.

Typically, you interview a few realtors, go with someone who is experienced and seems capable, and then they say those magical words “Let’s get this place ready to list!”. Sounds fairly simple, right? Except the general rule of thumb is to remove a lot of your personal things, make the home look more generic so that anyone can envision themselves living there, and then…you have to live there during the selling process! You also have to be ready to get out of your house when there are showings, which is pretty much impossible when you have kids or work from home.

We’ve compiled a few tricks to help make listing and living in your house easier.

Before You List

Outside In

Look at your house when you drive up. What do you see? Strangers might focus on the old kids’ slide or the broken bird bath. You want to look at your exterior first and clean it up. This might be adding some mulch and weeding to make your garden beds look fresh, and decluttering outside.

Store What You Can

If you have a lot of exterior clutter, consider getting a small storage unit like many of our customers do. Especially if you know you’re moving before the next season, you might as well move these items now, so your home sells better. We’re talking about the snow blower that makes your garage look smaller, or the wheelbarrow that you will not need in the middle of the winter.

If you have things you won’t use, like Christmas décor, before your move, put these into organized bins and get them to your storage unit. Always make sure you label things and take a picture of your storage unit contents before you leave your unit. This will help you find things, and give you peace of mind.

The good news is, this first “storage unit trip” will also help you understand what to keep, give away or sell, when you move into your new home. If you’re downsizing, you probably can give away or sell things. If you’re moving up in house size, then you will want to keep items.

Keep Essentials

No matter how hard you try, if you’re living in your home while you list it, you will need to keep some personal items! The best tip we have heard from a realtor is to move all like things to one space. For example, instead of letting the kid clutter be in every single room (we are guilty of this!), pick a room and move all kid stuff there. People can understand that there are toys in a play room. They start to focus on the toys (and not your house) when they are in every room.

Also, try and keep your personal items as organized as can be, but not over-organized, as that’s impossible to maintain. So, for blankets, instead of having them all over, you might want to get a bench with storage inside of it, and keep blankets there. Or in your pantry, get large wire baskets to store boxes of pasta, or other dry items, instead of trying to keep them lined up on a shelf.

Before A Showing:

Sometimes, you don’t get a lot of notice that there is a showing. Which means you have to be ready and that can be a drag. Unfortunately, you have to get comfortable with having your plans thrown for a loop and accommodating showings, because your home is a big asset and you want to get the best price for it.

Keep your home about 95% ready to show. As in, you would not be embarrassed to show your house to strangers, and if you did 5% more work, you’d be really proud.

Before your leave your house, try and do the following:

Kitchen & Dining Room:

  • Clean off counters, tables, chairs
  • Wipe counters, tables and chairs
  • Wipe down appliances
  • Wash & put away dishes
  • Sweep
  • Empty trash (this can be smelly)
  • Turn on dishwasher if any dirty dishes are in there (again, avoid smells)


  • Make beds (consider having a “show duvet” that you keep in each closet to replace the actual duvet being slept with – this will cut down on laundry)
  • Put all clutter away, close all drawers
  • Close closets
  • Hide laundry
  • Turn on lights (helps brighten the room)
  • Make sure all blinds are up

General Rooms:

  • Tidy furniture, rugs & plump pillows (and karate chop them to put in a nice dent)
  • Put away all personal items
  • Turn off all screens
  • Close closets
  • Turn on lights (brightens room & makes space appear nicer)


  • Wipe down counter, sink & mirror
  • Wipe down & close toilets (you know why)
  • Wipe down showers & bathtubs
  • Hang towels nicely or have show towels
  • Put all personal items inside a drawer
  • Empty trash
  • Turn on lights (brightens the room & makes it appear larger)

A few realtors have given us some other tips:

  • Have a basket that you put things to go to the next floor – this cuts down on clutter throughout each floor.
  • Do a load of laundry a day and have a cover on your laundry hamper.
  • Try and minimize cooking, as this leads to smells, so make larger portions when you cook, so there are leftovers.
  • Rinse dishes and put them straight into the dishwasher.
  • Keep your home smelling fresh with nice flowers, bake some cookies (your friends will like this!) or have lemon juice in water to spritz your counters and cut any bad food smells.

We know these tips helped us stage and live in a house and we hope these make your life easier too! Check out these additonal tips for staging your home.

If you have questions about self-storage we’re just a text away! You can tour our Milton self storage and Woodstock self storage facilities on YouTube as well as the many different sizes of storage units we have for rent. And in addition to offering affordable prices and fantastic discounts, we also offer lots of tips, advice and knowledge on self storage, as well as a good laugh on a regular basis on social media. Make sure to like or follow us on Instagram, FacebookTwitter.

Good luck selling your home!

Your friend in self-storage,

Storage Solutions


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amer hashem (Milton)
a month ago

Very reliable storage. A good solution to park your car and keeping it protected from all weather conditions. Although a bit remote location.. but the price and the service was worth it.

Riley Rogozynski (Woodstock)
a week ago

I went in to find out some information on storage units for when I move in a couple weeks and was happily surprised by the customer service I received. I had looked at a few other storage facilities in Woodstock but their customer service was terrible compared to Jared's from Storage Solutions. He was professional and understanding of my needs and was ready to help anywhere he could. I will definitely be spreading the word to any of my friends looking for units!

Jennifer Sibbitt (Milton)
a week ago

Staff are very friendly and helpful. The facility is well maintained, clean and secure. I highly recommend Storage Solutions!

Janet Kennedy (Woodstock)
2 weeks ago

Great rates for a clean, secure, well lit place. Really good staff and a company that cares. New facility and the competitors are pretty tired looking and charging the same rates (if not a bit more).

Abeer Nauman (Milton)
a day ago

Very friendly staff. Always great service. Would highly recommend.

Lindsay Munro (Milton)
4 months ago

My husband and I recently relocated from the US and needed a place to store all of our belongings while we secured a new home. The folks at Storage Solutions advised us on the right size unit for our needs, at the right price. They were kind and helpful with all of our "first-timer" questions. We were very confident in the security of the place, and had absolutely no issues. I would highly recommend and use them again if needed.

Ashley Kelly (Milton)
a month ago

Been storing office and personal items for years. Have had various size units. Prices are great and staff has always been helpful.