|Posted on July 27, 2012 at 2:10 AM|
Are you desperately trying to keep up with the every-day clutter that comes along with kids?
This post will offer solutions to speed up the sale of your home in just 4 Steps!
If you are thinking of listing your home for sale or have already, and can't seem to wrap your head around the idea of keeping things looking tidy and clutter free for showings, read on to find some easy and affordable ideas to speed up the sale of your home!
These pictures are of average, every day clutter that we all know and hate. It seems that the second you tidy up, the kids have hauled out a thousand more toys, arts and crafts items, and left a trail of dirty laundry all over the house. Don't be too hard on yourself though! We all combat the same problem. I do, however, have a few simple steps that will ease your mind and lighten your work load while making your house presentable and clutter free. Take a deep breath....and read on.
It is very important that the whole family is on board with this plan. Have a family meeting and explain that in order to sell the house, everyone will have a task to do. In addition to getting the kids and family to agree to help maintain the home once tidied up, you must also decide which items you use on a regular basis and what can be packed away. I recommend giving your children complete (well almost complete) control over this step.
The average amount of time that homes sit on the market before selling is currently, at the time this article was written, 51 days. In order to reduce clutter in your home, you must come up with an acceptable number of items that each individual will need to use over the 51 days after listing your home. Think of this assignment as packing for a vacation. Decide what the bare essentials are and choose a number that represents these items. This can be made into a fun game for the whole family. Find a laundry basket, plastic bin, or box for each family member. Item by item on the list below, ask each family member to gather the following: (you can increase or decrease the numbers I have suggested, but please keep in mind that this is an exercise in minimalism)
-Ask each individual to gather the essential toiletries they will need for the next two months, ie, hair brush, toothbrush, shower supplies, hair accessories, shaving items, tweezers...etc. Have each person put their essential toiletry items into a shoe box labelled with their name and store these boxes in a cabinet or drawer in the bathroom or linen closet. As each person readies oneself for the day, the items can be placed back in their own box and neatly stored away.
-Keeping the current season in mind, ask each family member to choose 7 entire outfits that they will rotate wearing over the next two months. Make sure that everyone keeps out a few items for different occasions and weather conditions. Remember socks and underwear too! Don't worry about outerwear at this point...that’s coming next! Have each person separate their chosen items into one drawer or area in the closet.
-Again, keeping in mind the current season and weather conditions, ask each family member to choose a few jackets or sweaters, three pairs of shoes, a hat, and whatever sports items are needed.
-Ask each child to choose 10 toys and 10 books that they can't live without for the next 51 days. This may be the most difficult task, but keep reminding the kids that it is only for a short amount of time and they will have all their possessions safely packed away and ready for them at the new house. If possible, encourage your children to choose smaller, less bulky toys to keep out.
-If you have an arts and crafts area set up for the kids, help them to decide on a few essential items to keep handy and set them aside.
-If you have a home office, decide what is essential to have on your desk and set those items aside.
Now that you have decided what your essential items are that you will need to survive the next 51 days, we can move on to step 2! In this step, all non-essential items will be packed away and stored neatly. If you are feeling overwhelmed with the idea of packing all the extra items, you may want to consider hiring Revealing Assets Home Staging And De-cluttering Services to do it for you. We offer our services, to come in and carefully pack up all non-essential items to be stored while your home is listed. All you will need to do is provide us with boxes or rubber maid type bins with lids, and some bubble wrap or packing paper, and we will take care of the rest.
Once all of the non-essential items are packed up, the boxes can be neatly stacked in the garage or basement, or you may want to consider a short term rental of a storage facility to keep the home as clutter free as possible.
At this point, you should have all non-essential items packed away and all essential items left in the home. At this stage, you now need to organize the remaining items as neatly as possible. If you have hired Revealing Assets to help, this step will also be taken care of for you! The key here is that all surfaces should now be clear of clutter. All closets should only have very few items with the floor area completely clear. All cupboards in the kitchen and bathroom should be mostly bare except for the essential items. All of the children's toys should be put away neatly with floor space maximized. Revealing assets can also make suggestions about placement of your furniture for the best energy flow and appearance as well as placement of key accessories to highlight the best-selling features of your house.
Your home should now be ready to list to sell!!!
One final step....maintaining the cleanliness! The key to successfully keeping your home looking neat and tidy is daily maintenance. With only the essentials left in the home, it should only take a matter of minutes a day to put everything away, out of sight. It may be helpful to have a small plastic bin, for each family member, labelled with names. Choose a time of day when everyone will take 10 minutes to gather their own items in their bin and put them away. Straighten cushions, fold throw blankets, a quick dust, and tidy throughout and you always be ready for a spur of the moment showing! The best part is, that when your house sells, you are done most of the packing already!!!
Submitted and Written by Guest Blogger and partner Home Stager: Toni Harris
Revealing Assets - Home Staging and Decluttering Services has been successfully Staging homes for Sale in Edmonton, Alberta and surrounding areas since 2009.