Debbie  Lamberger

Debbie Lamberger

Licensed Real Estate Professional/Real Estate Consultant

HomeLife Advantage Realty Ltd.

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The kitchen is the most important room in the house for most people. Buyers may rave about the rest of your house, but if the kitchen doesn’t meet their expectations, they may walk away. REALTORs® know that beautiful kitchens sell homes.

House hunters are looking for spacious countertops, a good work triangle, updated appliances and plenty of storage space.

Buyers are very savvy these days, knowing the costs of updating or remodeling a kitchen, and most will not want to take on this job when buying a new home. 

Before You Declutter Your Kitchen:  


  • Collect boxes, totes, garbage bags, bubble wrap, tape and permanent markers.   Label boxes to make it easier when unpacking.  Separate items for the move, donations, selling or throwing away. 
  • Keep towels and potholders in drawers, not dangling from the oven handle.
  • Corral sponges and cleansers in a shallow bowl under the sink.
  • Pot racks, utensils hanging on walls and other open kitchen storage can be unsightly and even dangerous, if people are in danger of hitting their heads or brushing up against sharp gear. Take it all down and swap in plain wallboard.
  • Pack away rarely used staples and gear like seasonal cookie cutters, extra aprons, and unusual spices to air out pantries, drawers and cabinets. People need to envision their own stuff in the storage spaces.
  • Remove evidence of problems, such as ant powder, from closets.

Declutter Kitchen Countertops, Cabinets and Drawers

  • When decluttering, focus on one area at a time, for example, 1 drawer, wall, countertop or cabinet. 
  • When decluttering, focus on one area at a time, ie 1 drawer, cabinet, countertop, wall or the ceiling. 
  • As you declutter, ask yourself 3 questions: “Do I use this?” “How many do I have?” & “Would I buy this today?”
  • Declutter your kitchen first by clearing off the countertops. Cluttered countertops give the impression that you lack storage space and need the countertops for overflow.
  • Cluttered countertops can also make a kitchen appear tired and small, so clear counters of small appliances.
  • Don’t forget the inside of your cupboards and drawers. Buyers WILL look inside to see if there’s enough room for their things. 
  • Buyers will think your kitchen lacks storage space when cupboards and drawers are crammed full.
  • Illusion plays a key role in the art of home staging. Leaving spaces around items will give the impression that there's lots of storage room in your kitchen.  Here is your chance to get rid of rarely used items. As you declutter your kitchen cabinets, you'll notice things that don't belong in that part of the kitchen. Put these items aside for the appropriate cabinet later. 
  • If you have an excessive amount of anything, box most of them up. Be aware of your work triangle and store the appropriate items nearest to where you use them.Leave up a handful of strategically placed accessories to call buyers’ attention to the decorative shelving.
  • As you declutter your kitchen, organize the cabinets with similar items, and be sure to “face” each item toward the front. This is a grocery store trick to keep shelves looking neat and organized.
  • Organize your cupboards by grouping similar things together.

Declutter Your Kitchen with Organizing Systems

  • You can find a great selection of kitchen organizers for cabinets and drawers at any home center these days. 
  • For messy utensil or “junk” drawers, use inexpensive trays and boxes to keep things neat. Buyers are always impressed when they open a neatly organized drawer.
  • Declutter your kitchen with organizer shelving for stacking dishes and bowls.

Refacing Kitchen Cabinets

  • Dingy kitchen cabinets can be spruced up with a good cleaning, a coat of paint or refacing. 
  • If your kitchen cabinet doors are in bad shape or outdated, consider replacing the door panels. It's easier and less expensive than replacing the entire cabinets.
  • With refacing, the boxes and frames of your existing cabinets are kept intact. You can buy doors already finished or refinish your own. 

Kitchen Cabinet Hardware

  • Adding new cabinet and drawer hardware is a quick and affordable way to update your kitchen. You may need to fill the old hardware holes before you paint if they don't correspond with the new ones. To avoid this problem, take the old hardware to the store with you and select new ones with matching holes.
  • When choosing knobs and pulls for your cabinets, stick to neutrals like polished nickel, satin and brushed finishes. Avoid brassy tones or cutesy hardware that may only appeal to you.

Kitchen Countertops

  • Home buyers have become very demanding about their kitchen countertop preferences these days, preferring granite, marble or quartz over less expensive options.
  • If your kitchen countertops are in dire need of replacement, consider a precut slab of granite, Silestone or Caesar Stone. For a high-end look without the maintenance of marble, try engineered quartz countertops. They look beautiful and the surface is nonporous and durable.

Kitchen Backsplash

  • Many people think a kitchen looks incomplete without a backsplash, in the same way that a woman's outfit needs accessories to complete it. Adding a backsplash will add color and texture to a kitchen and make clean up easier.
  • A kitchen backsplash doesn't have to be fancy. Affordable and classic subway tile will enhance any kitchen decor. 

Kitchen Appliances

  • Adding new and MATCHING kitchen appliances will bring a higher return for sellers, so get rid of old ones that make your kitchen look dated and tired. They don't have to be expensive, just clean and matching. Home buyers will appreciate that.
  • If you can't afford to replace outdated kitchen appliances, try re-facing the fronts with an affordable sheet of stainless-steel film. EZ Instant Makeover offers a high-quality vinyl film that will stick to the surface of any smooth-faced appliance you wish to update. 
  • In addition to kitchen appliances, you can also use this stainless-steel film on any flat surface, like counter tops, backsplashes and shelves. This product is scratch and heat resistant and easy to clean.

Cleaning the Kitchen Sink

  • Clean stubborn stains and make your kitchen sink look great.

Cleaning and Repairing Kitchen Tile Grout

  • Refresh the look of your kitchen tiles. Sparkling kitchen tiles will help sell your house fast and keep home buyers from negotiating the price down.

Clean and Stage the Refrigerator

  • Declutter your kitchen by cleaning out the fridge. People WILL look inside the fridge to check out the space, so it’s vital that it looks spacious and clean. 

When you've finished decluttering and cleaning your kitchen, it's time to move on to the FUN part of the home staging process, where you get to apply home decorating ideas to the space. 


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