Ahhh, the crisp smell of paint, lemon Pledge, Windex, and Lavender Fields Glade Plug-ins. Harken to the dust mop ever-swishing and the dishes ever washing. The gleam and sheen of counter and cabinet are rivaled only by the sparkling clean stove top. The refrigerator, you ask, blinded by the glow, can that possibly be real? But where the milk dripping down the back of the shelves, where the puddle of petrified BBQ sauce? You might even wonder if a fridge is still a fridge without the veggie drawer of death.
But don't stop there - have you seen my closets? Arranged by season and color, not a thing in the hamper, nary a sock on the floor. And with its empty counters and cabinets with nail polish lined like tin soldiers, my bathroom sometimes wonders if I even still live here.
Fret not, though, my friends! You, too, can have a house as sparkling clean as ours. And it's so easy to do...
All you have to do is sell it.
Then spend weeks packing, painting, finishing projects like flagstone patios, patching walls, updating fixtures, scouring baseboards, cleaning like a mad-woman. And, of course, you have to live there like you don't live there at all. If you get something out, it goes up immediately. If you see a speck of dust, panic, then grab the dust mop. Forget your favorite china; your place settings now all say "Solo" and come in red or blue. Make your bed every day and carry a Clorox wipe with you everywhere you go in the house... just in case. And definitely forget having a social life while it's on the market. Because you have to go home and clean the few hours worth of dust that settled while you were working.
Simple, right? On one hand, when we listed our house on 5/11, our house had never been cleaner and felt more soothing to live in (albeit living in very carefully). On the other hand, when we accepted an offer on the 19th, we breathed a HUGE sigh of relief and beer cans, junk mail, and socks magically started appearing all over the house again. The sparkling fridge? Well, it was nice for the week or two it lasted, but face it; that's basically going against nature.
So there you have it: If you want a perfect house you should absolutely put it on the market right now. You just have to give up all sense of comfort, privacy, free time, and sanity, but it's totally worth it, right? Right.