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Staging the Kitchen
Techniques > Staging the Kitchen
The kitchen is a place of work. It is also a family place, where people meet informally and talk about their day. It is a place of food and food preparation and there may be signs of this. It is also place of cleaning, such as washing dishes and clothes.
The kitchen should first be clean, but also may, more than other rooms, show signs of work and being 'lived in'.
Ensure the worktops are clear, as this makes the room and workspace seem much bigger. If you have lots of workspace, you can leave out one or two major good-quality appliances such as the microwave and coffee-maker. if you have relatively limited work space, maximise the apparent space by putting away everything.
If there is worktop lighting, turn it on so that it can be seen. A vase of flowers on the table or window sill can be a nice touch.
If the worktop is looking rather tired, consider replacing it.
Clean the outsides of cupboards and fix any wobbly hinges. If cupboards may be opened by purchasers, then clean the inside (this means taking everything out) and stacking the contents tidily. Take the opportunity to get rid of any food that is out of date and maybe old pans and other items too.
Consider replacing all the cupboard doors (and drawer fronts). This is an easy way of freshening up the kitchen and making it look new without significant cost. A cheaper way of doing this is just to change the handles (it is surprising the difference this will make). You can also paint doors or otherwise re-cover them.
Give the cooking appliances a jolly good clean, inside and out, including the oven. If you have not done this for a while, you will need a strong cleaning system. Read the instructions and wear protective gloves as needed.
Also clean the overhead extractor. These can easily become very greasy and this can be a long and messy job. Replacing the filter, even though it cannot be seen, will help to reduce possible smells.
Clean and scrub the sink. Ensure any garbage system is cleaned out and tidy. Put away anything draining. Throw away any old mopping cloths and put away the rest.
Clean all other appliances that will be on show, especially those that may be sold with the house or which may be opened. Remove any signs of leakage, for example water stains around the washing machine outlet.
If appliances are dated, then it can add more value than it costs to replace these. There's nothing quite like the latest kitchen kit to hook a buyer (who probably has tired old stuff).
Smoke and and grease rises, and kitchen ceilings are the recipient of this. Kitchen ceilings may consequently benefit from a coat (or two) of paint. When doing so, protect the surfaces below from splashes.
Also check and clean ceiling lights, which may may be covered in dust or grease. This not only looks bad, it adds smells as the grease is quietly cooked. It also colors and reduces the light output.
If you have a utility room or laundry, clean this area. Put away mops, boots and all the usual clutter that tends to fill such areas. Make sure nobody tramps in mud before the visitors arrive. Ensure all clothes are washed and put away (never leave out dirty laundry).
Check all lights work and replace these as necessary.
Throw out any garbage well before the visitors arrive, to ensure there is no lingering smells.
Put on the coffee pot or bake some bread to give the room some pleasant smells.
Gather together all manuals, certificates and maintenance bills for all appliances that you will be leaving behind. Showing visitors that you have these helps remove worries and shows you are thinking kindly of them.
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