Does your house have an old lingering smell?
Buyers won’t be interested in a house that doesn’t pass the smell test. They don’t know what that smell is, or where it’s coming from. Worst of all, they don’t know if it’s a permanent smell they will have to live with for years. The slightest odd smell will have your potential buyers dash out the door before they even get a chance to see the entire place.
If you’ve tried opening the window, mopping, and using sprays, but the smell still won’t go away, you might want to try baking soda. It is non-toxic, works with removing most odor, and you might even already have some lying somewhere in your house.
Unlike other air fresheners, baking soda doesn’t just mask odors, it absorbs them. It is especially good at neutralizing smelly compounds in foods like sour milk and rotten meat.
If you don’t want buyers to get a face full of leftover smells when they open the fridge, put an open box of baking soda in the fridge and one in the freezer too.
If the smell is really bad, opening a corner of a baking soda box isn’t going to cut it. Instead, pour the baking soda onto a plate to increase the surface area and stick that in the fridge.
While you are taking out the trash, make sure to check the trash can itself. Sprinkle some baking soda into the bottom of the trash can and into the trash bag to get it smelling like new.
If you have a general smell in your kitchen, it might be coming from the open drains. Just pour ¼ cup of baking soda down the drain along with ¼ cup of vinegar and some kosher salt to neutralize the smell.
After you see bubbles rise from the drain, wait 5-10 minutes and wash it down with some boiling water. Then run the disposal with cool water.
Add 2 tablespoons of baking soda and a cup of water to a microwave-safe bowl and zap it for 3 minutes. The baking soda will eliminate the smell while the steam from the water will make it easy to clean the stains.
If you haven’t turned on the oven in a while to avoid that burning smell, baking soda can help with that too. With half a cup of baking soda and 2 quarts of water, create a thick paste that you can scrub all over your oven. Then wait 24 hours before you wipe it off with water.
This will not only clean the oven, but it will also make it smell better. Plus, this same method can be used on the range, the fridge, the backsplash, and most other surfaces in the kitchen. The paste is noncorrosive, so you don’t have to worry about damaging surfaces like other harsh cleaners.
Baking soda also helps eliminate human odors like sweat or pet urine, which might be the culprit in your living room or bedroom.
Carpets & Rugs
Nothing takes a worse beating in a house than the carpets and rugs, that is especially true when it comes to smells. After years of walking on them, spilling things on them, and not cleaning them as often as you should, they probably need a little deodorizing.
All you have to do is sprinkle a little baking soda across the carpet or rug and let it sit for a few hours. If the smell is still there, try leaving it overnight, then vacuuming it up.
You can also use this technique on dog and cat beds or a couch or bed. Anything with fabric can be deodorized with a little baking soda.
If you keep your dirty socks in a hamper in your closet, your whole bedroom might smell that way. Keeping an open box of baking soda in your closet can help clear up the smell. But if you want to go straight to the source, you can sprinkle baking soda directly in your shoes.
Since baking soda only eliminates odors that it comes in contact with, making a spray will help it get around the room better. Just add 1 tablespoon of baking soda to a spray bottle with water and you have a deodorizer you can spray anywhere around the house.
With such a healthy, eco-friendly, budget-friendly way to remove odors around the house, you might want to pick up a box of baking soda next time you’re in the store and try these tips out for yourself. Your nose will thank you.