When you live in a house for years, there are just some things you start overlooking…the missing tile in the corner of the bathroom; the hole in the closet for the CAT 5 cable you installed pre-wifi; that overgrown corner of the yard that no one sees; the unpermitted electrical in the garage.  It turns out you need to deal with those things if you want to get top dollar for your house.  Our realtor, Joey, also gave us a lot of other suggestions to improve the saleability of our 21-year-old house.

Shawn had a lot of shelves and electrical built into the garage.  That all had to come out and then Joey suggested painting the walls white to give a cleaner, larger, brighter look.  If you’re going to have a 4-year-old “help” on a painting project, the garage is probably the best place.  To fill the holes left by the electrical conduit, Shawn found this nifty spackle that goes on pink and turns white when it’s dry.  No more trying to paint over wet spackle.


The water is our area is very hard, so we had years of buildup on our once clear shower doors.  I found a service to clean the doors and clean the tile grout.  What an amazing difference that makes.  Of course now we no longer use the master shower because we don’t want to get any water spots on the glass.



We recently had the interior of our house painted, so the walls are in pretty good shape; however, our youngest son’s room still had purple walls and a wallpaper border of his favorite basketball team.  Joey said that had to go.  Seriously, who wouldn’t want a house in Sacramento with a Kings motif?  You need to support the home team people!  We removed the chair rail and wallpaper and painted the whole room gray like the rest of the house.  So boring.


Each of the kids’ rooms had a closet with double sliding doors.  When the kids were young, the doors were a hassle, so we removed and discarded them (the doors, not the kids).  It turns out people don’t want to buy houses without closet doors, so off to Home Depot to buy three sets of replacement doors.  Shawn had already packed up his power tools and sent them to Idaho in POD #1, so he had to buy a hacksaw and cut the tracks to length manually.

We had a few projects in the yard too.  General weeding and pruning to get the yard back in shape; updating the flowerbeds with fresh bark; fixing a few boards in the fence; removing a Japanese maple tree that we want to take with us to our new house.  Out next door neighbor has let her yard go a bit, so Shawn coaxed her 10-year-old son into helping rake leaves, and I repainted her fence while they were on a bike ride (we have an HOA that demands that any street facing fencing is painted a specific shade of gray).

The Japanese maple ready to move

This week Joey is taking pictures of the house for the listing and he plans to have an open house this weekend.  The carpet was shampooed and has the requisite vacuum marks.  All personal items and photos have been removed.   The closet is staged to perfection (matching hangers, clothing sorted, shoes lined up).  The house is looking very shiny and spacious.  The only pieces of furniture we have left are a sofa, dining set, bed, armoire, nightstands, three TVs, a desk and two desk chairs.  The house is so empty that it echoes.  Of course all this fixing up makes you wonder…why didn’t we do this ages ago?

The echoing gray cavern that was our home

This is really happening