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We all make mental to-dos that can fall by the wayside. Getting your house clean is one of the easiest to forget. Prior to a showing, you may end up scrambling around taking care of missed tasks before a potential home buyer shows up. A moment of panic can set in if you suddenly realize you're out of a cleaning chemical.

Luckily, there are many cleaning tasks that can be taken care of with common household items. Here are some of the easiest ways to make good use of items you find around the house in order to get it spic-and-span before a showing:


Floor Cleaner

Floor cleaner can be made out of almost anything. The best recipes use:     

  • 3 cups vinegar
  • A couple drops of dish soap
  • 2 gallons of water

You can add some fresh lemon to improve the scent, or any number of essential oils.


Stained Metal

Hard water stains in the bathtub or kitchen sink can be tough to scrub out. If you have a delicate metal finish, hard scrubbers or steel wool are out of the question.

Lemon is a natural solution to get rid of these stains. The acid will eat through the chalky built up calcium carbonate without damaging the finish. You can wipe off the dissolved stains with a soft sponge or rag.

A great way to get all your metal appliances shiny once they are stain-free is to use baby oil as a polishing agent. Apply a couple of drops to a soft dish towel and wipe in broad circular motions until the oil is evenly distributed.


Dirty Dishwasher

You may be surprised to find out just how dirty the machine that is supposed to clean your dishes could be. A home buyer will want to check out all the appliances that will come with the house. If your dishwasher has stains or a funky smell, it can turn them off to a sale.

Cleaning the dishwasher properly involves two main objectives. First, you have to assess whether the equipment is functioning properly.

Remove the bottom rack and look for standing water or stains. Dishwashers can have solid materials like chips of glass, bones, crab shells or even fallen dishes. Take these out and let any water drain.

Once your dishwasher is back in ship shape, use the following steps:

  • Fill a dishwasher-safe dish or cup with white vinegar
  • Place the container right side up in the otherwise empty dishwasher
  • Run the dishwasher on its longest, hottest setting with a steam dry
  • After the cycle, pull out the bottom dish rack again and sprinkle the entire area with baking soda             
  • Run the dishwasher again on a shorter setting, but one that is still hot

Your dishwasher should be looking and smelling like new after this treatment.


There are many other ways to spruce up your Red Deer real estate property before a crucial showing in ways that increase value and appeal. For more advice on how to put your best foot forward before a sale, check out our selling page.


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Data is supplied by Pillar 9™ MLS® System. Pillar 9™ is the owner of the copyright in its MLS®System. Data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by Pillar 9™.
The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.