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How to Keep Your Bathroom Perpetually Fresh for a Fast Sale

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By : Vivian Olkin    99 or more times read
As a REALTOR, I've seen a lot of bathrooms. Some that stand out in my memory are:

  • A Caribbean themed bathroom, with bright blue walls, tropical plants and a neon yellow fish net suspended from the ceiling, with scattered seashells, sponges and star fish.

  • A bathroom inspired by a Kenyan safari with taupe walls, animal print candles, carved wooden jungle animals and photographs of lions and zebras.

  • A palatial purple bathroom fit for an Indian maharajah with a silver trimmed sari draped across the tub as a shower curtain, textile wall hangings, paper mache boxes and silver candlesticks.

Although individual styles and looks can vary greatly in bathrooms, everyone agrees on one thing: they need to smell clean and fresh. What's the secret? When it comes to selling your house, I don't keep secrets from a motivated seller like you!

1. Mr. Clean was here. Clean smells clean. Now that you have it clean, how do you keep it that way? Oh my dear, I can tell you a few tricks and help your house stage like a pro!

2. All night, all day. Use continuous clean products. I like those little toilet bleach tabs. Flush the toilet, pull top of the toilet back and drop the little tab just like it tells you on the package. Now carefully put that top back on and look confident. Every time someone at your house flushes, a little bit of that cleaning solution will swish around and keep your toilet smelling fresh. Generic brands have worked as well as the expensive ones at our house.

3. What's that smell? Tuck away a Bounce dryer sheet or two. My cousin taught me this one. She would tuck one underneath the trash bag in her cute little trash can and hid another one in the decorative basket of potpourri on her bathroom counter. You couldn't see those sheets, but you could smell that fresh laundry scent as soon as you came in her bathroom door. Lovely!

4. Emergency Clean Kit's under the sink, and I'm not afraid to use it! It happens. The doorbell rings, you race around and put the newspaper under a cushion in the sofa, kick the dog's toy into the closet, and your next thought is the bathroom. (I can't print what your very first thought might have been.) Even your elementary aged kid can be trained to tidy up your bathroom if you have the right tools available: paper towels, Windex, a package of disposable bathroom wipes, and a few plastic grocery bags (for disposing of your cleaning evidence.)

5. Touch not the towel! I'm sure you have beautiful sets of matching towels that perfectly complement your bathroom. While you're staging your house, make sure no one in the house touches them. Now is the time to place a dark brown towel (or even a roll of paper towels) on the counter. This necessary item can be tucked under the sink when potential buyers drop by, and your guest towels will still look great. No, that's not cheating. That's using your head, my dear.

And using your head - and your clean bathroom - is what you need to do to get your house sold!
---Vivian Olkin stages homes for sale in Chapel Hill, Durham, Hillsborough and all over the Triangle area of North Carolina. For more great ways to stage a home, visit Vivian at

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