When your home is for sale, you want it to make a good impression on prospective buyers. That means you've got to get it show-ready for those who will be seeing your home online and in person.
From de-cluttering, to cleaning, to decorating and properly arranging furniture, there's a lot that goes into staging your home for the market. But all that effort is certainly worth it if it means selling your home quickly and for the most money possible.
But what should stay and what should go when your home is being visited by buyers? While certain things will add to the appeal of your home, others may leave a bad taste in the mouth of your buyers. Here are some things that should be put away when your home is listed for sale.
The idea behind home staging is to help buyers see themselves living in your home and calling it their own. Buyers have a hard time visualizing the potential of homes and how they can work for their own family and lifestyle, which is why your home should be staged in such a way that no visualizing is necessary.
Unfortunately, all those family photos you have hanging on your walls and lining your shelves can distract buyers from envisioning themselves calling your home theirs. If all buyers are able to see is your family, it will be hard for them to see their own family living there.
While it can certainly be tough for you to have to take the beloved family photos and portraits down, you'll have to do so eventually anyway once you sell and prepare to have all of your belongings moved to your new home.
Political or Religious Items
Religion and politics have a way of conjuring up intense feelings in people, which is not what you want when trying to get your home off the market quickly. No two topics can make a person feel more uncomfortable than these, which is why you want no part of them in your home while it's staged for the market. You might be devoted to your particular religion or political party, but not everyone will necessarily feel the same.
Buyers may not only be put off by such artifacts, they can also get offended. While they may not share the same outlook as you, your job here is to stage your home so that it appeals to as many buyers as possible, so any pictures, posters, and any other artifacts with a religious or political theme should be put away.
You might love having a pet, but there are probably a lot of buyers out there who have no desire to share their home with animals. Sure, your pet might be cute and cuddly, but it likely leaves behind a lot of unsightly, smelly things that will surely turn buyers off.
All those chewed up toys, litter boxes, and grooming items should be kept out of sight. Further, you should mask any pet odors by vacuuming up any pet hair, patching up claw marks on the walls and floors, and cleaning up any stains left behind by pet excrement. When you're done, there should be no sign of animals in your house.
One of the main rules when it comes to home staging is to ensure the home is de-cluttered from top to bottom. That means getting rid of piled up magazines, toys, dishes, laundry, and other items that might make your home seem messy.
Unfortunately, that also means possibly getting rid of your prized collections. Whether you're an avid collector of spoons from around the world, porcelain dolls, or mini crystal figurines, too much of one thing can make a space seem cluttered. While your home is on the market, gather up all of these collectibles and get them ready for your upcoming move.
It's a good idea to start the packing process even before you find a buyer for your home. This will give you a chance to put things away that should not be left out - including all the above. However, that doesn't mean that you should leave all your packing boxes out in the open for all to see. This does little to enhance the look of your home.
If you've been accumulating packed boxes since listing your home for sale, consider renting out some storage space to keep your boxes until you're ready to move them into your new home.
The Bottom Line
It might be a pain to have to pack up all of your belongings before the first buyer walks through the door, but you'll eventually have to pack up at some point before you move. Nobody said this would be a simple journey, but you can certainly make it a much more streamlined and hassle-free one if you prep your home in such a way that it will attract the masses of buyers out there.
By impressing your buyers and helping to foster an emotional connection between them and your home, you'll be able to sell sooner rather than later. Keep this in mind to help you temporarily part with your prized possessions until your home is sold.