Selling Your Home: Tips to Declutter, Depersonalize, and Stage Your House
Whether you are moving into a new home across the country or downsizing into a smaller place across town, you must put some work in to get your current home ready to sell. Depending on the housing market in your area, it may be a tough time for sellers to get top dollar for their properties. Therefore, you need to take steps to make your house stand out above the rest.
Over the years, we all accumulate way too much stuff. As you prepare your home for real estate listing photos, open houses, and showings, you can get rid of the things you no longer want, need, or use. Go room by room, separating your belongings into piles — keep, donate, sell, and trash. Of the things you decide to keep, figure out if you should store them away until you move. Fortunately, temporary storage can be very affordable — $87.15 is the national average. For the things you don’t want to keep, you can try to sell them on Craigslist or eBay, donate them to a local charity, or give them away. Whatever you still can't get rid of, recycle or throw away. If you lack the time or motivation to declutter your home, let the organizing pros at The Living Collective take care of it for you.
While you are decluttering, you also need to depersonalize. Not everyone has your taste in decor and knickknacks; therefore, you need to get rid of kitschy items, as well as personal photos, awards, trophies, toys, and pet items. You want your home to look spacious and also appeal to the masses. Buyers want to be able to imagine their own items inside your home. And if your place is cluttered with personal items, that’s difficult for them to do.
After your home is decluttered and your personal items are out of sight, it's time for a deep cleaning. You can tackle this job on your own or hire a cleaning service with some of that money you earned from selling your excess belongings and furniture. To get rid of odors, open the doors and windows in your home to air it out. You should also clean the outside of your home — power wash your siding, shine your windows, trim your bushes, and spruce up your front porch.
Is staging actually worth it? If you want to sell your home quickly, research indicates staging pays off. The Real Estate Staging Association reports homes that had not been staged before listing stayed on the market 143 days on average. After being staged, these homes sold in 40 days. Homes that were staged from the get-go averaged just 23 days on the market.
Before you go about staging your home, start searching through online listings to see how comparable homes are being decluttered and staged. Looking at the market trends, you'll notice that homes in Palm Harbor go pending in just 11 days. You can even take it a step further and attend several open houses. If houses similar to yours are rarely staged, you can get an advantage by staging your home. On the other hand, if all the homes in your area are staged to resemble dazzling model homes, you'll need to do the same in order to compete.
While it’s possible to stage your home yourself, a professional stager can recommend the proper lighting, furniture placement, accessories, and other touches to make your home look its best. They may also suggest you rent more up-to-date furnishings to create a picture-perfect look for your listing photos and open houses. However, if you want to save some money, you can try to borrow some pieces from friends.
With a little work and research, your home can look spacious and beautiful. The goal of decluttering, depersonalizing, and staging your home is to make it look as appealing as possible to the greatest number of buyers. Although it requires effort to get your home ready to sell, the changes you make can pay big dividends if you receive multiple offers above asking price. And remember, you don't have to go it alone! Reach out to The Living Collective -- with our organization services, we'll help get your home ready for buyers.
Image via Pixabay