A Show-Ready Home

When we sold Aaron’s house a year and a half ago, the home was more or less empty. We spent a lot of time getting the home show-ready up front (like updating the bathroom, putting in faux wainscoting), but once it was ready, it stayed ready. There was no one there to mess it up!

We don’t have that luxury in this house. We feel a little like the Bluth’s living in our showhouse… careful not to mess with any of the staging or getting anything dirty. Everything has become 1000% more fragile. All of this is aggravated by a really awesome thing: showings have been coming fast and steady. We live in a constant state of clean, cleaning and prepping to clean. No complaining here… just stating the facts!


To help us keep our home show-ready, we threw together a task list. These are the things that must be completed before every showing, if possible. We’re strict about it, but we’re not crazy about it. Here’s the list, which we keep copies of so we can mark out as we go.


  • De-poop the backyard
  • Sweep the backyard patio
  • Clean up any debris/trash in the front yard and street
  • Water the mums


  • Empty the kitchen and bathroom trash
  • Make sure closets are clean and organized (we learned the hard way)
  • Make the bed
  • Dust and wipe down all surfaces
  • Light a candle (our favorite for this time of year is Yankee Candle’s Autumn Wreath)
  • Heat foil-wrapped cinnamon in the oven at 250 degrees until oven is preheated, then open the oven door (the smell is amazing!)
  • Remove any clutter from countertops, office desk
  • Set up “info station” with seller disclosure, listing flyer and fact sheet
  • Make sure toilet lid is down
  • Store dog bowls and dog food
  • Vacuum
  • Hide any unfolded laundry :)
  • Remove any bath mats and accent rugs
  • Clean and shine up the floors

Floors are a big deal to us. We want them to SHINE during showings. I think we have baggage as pet owners, where a normal, not-on-the-market day around here means dog hair on the dull floors. Here’s how we approach our floors for showings.

First, we vacuum them. This removes the hair so that we can get to the shine part. We’ve gone through a ton of mops: the Swiffer WetJet, the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser mop, the wet tshirt draped over the Swiffer duster mop, etc. The mop we are loving currently is the Libman’s Freedom Spray mop.

Show-Ready Home

We love it for a couple of reasons, First, the Libman’s mop has a refillable chamber you can fill with whatever you want… your solution, their products, whatever. This is where I give the side eye to the WetJet, which makes you use their solution. On the Freedom mop, no batteries are required (it sprays via hand pump) AND there is no need to spend money on expensive mop head refills… side eye to you Magic Eraser Mop with your $11 refill heads! It is so easy to just throw the fabric mop head in the washer.

Show-Ready Home

I thought I would show you our floors pre-scrub with the Libman’s mop and multi-surface cleaning solution.. Not too bad, but a little dull too.

Show-Ready Home

Here’s the after (wet)….

Show-Ready Home

And here they are afterwards totally dry… no streaks, no hair and a lot of shine.

Show-Ready Home

So yea, if you need me these next few weeks, I’ll be here.

Show-Ready Home


Keep your fingers crossed for us as we work through these showings. Hopefully one of these appointments will be the ONE!




Libman’s provided free product to me to try. Because I was pleased with the product and its effectiveness, I decided to write this post. I love this mop, no doubt.

The End of the Sofa Saga

Let’s go back to this summer. Back in June I was the winner of the Small division in Apartment Therapy’s Small Cool contest. My prize was $1000 to Joybird Furniture.

I used my credit to buy this pretty little loveseat, called the Calhoun.

And if you recall from this post, the loveseat I received 6 weeks later was all wrong. It looked a little uhm… different. (I would insert a Renee Zellweger joke here but honestly I just feel terrible about that whole situation.)

Anyways, I tried to return the sofa. Key word is TRIED. Joybird outsources their furniture delivery to local providers, depending on the location (most of them do) and lucky for me, my area furniture delivery company was terrible. I mean the WORST. Never called me, never scheduled a return pick-up. They didn’t listen to me or Joybird. We were 100% virtually ignored. Lots of calls, emails, voicemails and apologies transpired between Joybird and I. Joybird was mortified.

This went on for two months. Keep in mind we live in a very small house, where a misplaced sofa isn’t exactly easy to ignore. The longer it took, the angrier I became. I was mad at Joybird for not stepping in and fixing it. I was mad at the delivery company for being so, so terrible.

So I sold that damn loveseat on Craigslist. For $800. After the sale, I let Joybird know that I needed to cancel my return request. As a peace offering, they threw me a gift card for $500, the difference between the Craigslist sale and the price on the sofa, which I appreciated. Especially considering I had very little actual money of my own in the deal.

Anyways, I talked so much about it here that I wanted to close the loop. With the loveseat sold, we moved our Lubi daybed from the office out into the living room and it’s a good enough solution for now.

The end. Thank you Joybird for being sincere and apologetic with me. I appreciate it. Maybe I will use that gift card one day.








On the Market

It was just a little over a month ago that we talked about looking for other homes and then made the decision to stop and stay put. I guess a lot of things can change in a month. Whiplash! Let me explain…


Our house is for sale. Here is the listing. We are very close to closing on a new home. Here’s how it all happened. This explanation is as much for you as it is for me. Everything has been happening so fast!

After I published that post last month, I (we) kept looking for homes. Dare I say I even began looking with a renewed sense of energy. Strange, right? Writing that post revealed something to me that I wasn’t quite ready to accept at the time: we are ready to move on. And for a long time, delaying and ignoring that feeling was the best choice for a lot of reasons. But it never changed the fact that it was a delay. Our current home wasn’t our permanent solution. A move to a new place seemed almost inevitable. So if it’s gonna happen, why not make it happen right now?

The timing seemed right and once we had decided, it was go, go, go from there. I’d be fooling you if I didn’t say that these big life changes are 50% a symptom of my infamous/fatal flaw GET.IT.DONE.RIGHT.NOW. philosophy. For example, for the past few weeks, we have been waffling over whether to sell or rent our current home. We decided on Tuesday to sell and by Wednesday our home was up on MLS. (Luckily, having a blog about your house makes it very easy to come by interior photos and more importantly, we have a kick ass listing agent).

We are going to sell this home by owner. We used our trick of using a flat-flee listing agent (happy to pass along his name to any NKY people) who can get our home up on the MLS, but it’s us doing the legwork on showings, marketing, etc. so that we can save some money on agent commission and ultimately, offer a competitive listing price. This is the same way we sold Aaron’s home a year and a half ago and it worked really well. For you realtors out there, we are of course still going to pay 3% to the buyer’s agent.

Here’s the listing flyer Aaron made last night. I feel so goofy about putting the house’s press on the back page (see the second pic) but hey… whatever helps.

Front Page

Front Page


I’ve yet to put a For Sale sign out front because I don’t want the neighbors to go berzerk. They’ve been so good to us for a long time. I will miss having my yard mowed by the neighbor (and no, that is not a euphemism… ).

About the new home… I won’t be spilling very many details on the new home yet because it’s not officially ours. We are under contract but we’re in the inspection/discovery period and I’m trying to keep it cool. Here’s what I can tell you. It’s an American Four Square in the Wallace Woods area of Covington, about a mile from our current house. It’s 100 years old but has been a completely renovated. We’re supposed to close November 14 but I’m hoping I can share details much sooner. I’ll feel better when the inspection and loan process are done, which should be in the next two weeks.

Stay tuned. Life is so exciting right now.