Selling Your Home? This Single Factor Can Make or Break Your Home Sale

When you’re thinking about selling your home, there are plenty of steps you can make your property look better before you list, from staging to painting to making any necessary repairs or renovations. But according to a recent article from, it doesn’t matter how great your house looks if you neglect one critical factor—and that’s how your house smells.

Smells are one of the first things potential buyers notice about a property—and if your home has any off-putting odors, it can be a dealbreaker.

The article recommends a variety of expert tips for getting your home smelling fresh for potential buyers, including:

  • Give the home a thorough clean. “The first step to a good-smelling home is to get rid of any odor,” said Barb Boehler, a real estate agent in Madison, WI. “Make sure to scrub all surfaces, wash all rugs, and have the carpets cleaned. Until this is done, you’ll only be masking smells.”
  • Freshen up your fridge. Buyers are sure to open up your fridge—and the last thing they want to smell is last night’s leftovers. Before you show your home to potential buyers, make sure to clear the fridge of any odor-causing food and give it a good scrub down. You can also add a fresh box of baking soda to absorb any lingering odors.
  • Bake the odor away. Baking can fill your home with a warm, pleasant scent—so before potential buyers come over, pop a batch of cookies or muffins in the oven.
  • Display your soaps. Chances are, you have more than a few bars of soap in your bathroom storage. Put them to good use—and get rid of any lingering bathroom odors—by displaying them in a bowl and placing it on your bathroom counter. “It can fill a room with a remarkably clean, fresh scent for weeks,” said Ben Creamer, a managing broker in Chicago, in the article. “You can even hide a bar or two in a walk-in closet to freshen the space.”

What does this mean for you? If you’re thinking about selling your home, do yourself a favor and tackle any potentially off-putting odors before you list. (For a full list of odor-busting tips, make sure to read the article on