January 30, 2012

Staging my House for Sale

Friday and Saturday were super busy days for Walk-through's! We had 2 couples in on Friday and one on Saturday which of course means that on Thursday after work I had to buckle down and really clean up the house. George was gone all week with work in Iowa so that means the house was a little more messy then usual. I kind of let my guard down a little when my husband is away. Don't you?

I have also been reading up a lot on tips for selling your home and I'm kind of at a 50/50 point of “yes, I think that will help sell our house” and “Their crazy if they think I'm doing that”. I've also talked with a few co-workers about the staging of a house and they brought up amazing points! Living on the East cost or in a large city and selling your home is quite different then selling a house in the midwest in a town of population 15,000.
Here is my list of what I have done and along with what I didn't do, maybe you have some recommendations as well:

#1: Clean!

I believe it is important to have a clean home and keep it clean. Prospective buyers don't want to see bugs in the window ceil,  counters cluttered, toilets yucky, floors unclean. It says a lot about an owner that keeps there home functional and organized. It says to the buyer that you kept up with this house and that you are not trying to hide anything. It also makes the spaces and rooms look bigger and bigger is better!

#2: Organize!

This was very hard for me, if you read back a little in my blog I told you about my husband and I being “Closet Clutter-ers”. On the outside everything is perfect on the inside behind closet doors there can be some dysfunction. I tried my best to organize clothes and shoes in the closets, put things away in drawers, and in the kitchen especially organize the cluttered drawers. Passer through's will open closets and drawers to see what space is available. You better not have junk falling out onto their heads!

#3: De-Personalize the home:

OH geez this was the hardest! It's my first home, how do I take down pictures of family, friends, and my husband and I when were still living there! It's really really hard for my since I live 1400 miles away from family and the pictures are all I have. You have to do it though. The articles say you have to take yourself out of the house… it's not yours anymore (or it wont be). Buyers want to envision themselves living there so it can be hard if you have wedding photos every where. I just had to tell myself they will go up in the new house, no worries.

#4: Fix what can be fixed now:

Go through and fix items that may be a barrier for selling the home. Maybe there is a hole in the wall… patch it up and paint it! Dead light bulbs… Replace them! Yucky silver faucets in the bathroom? Replace them or shine them up. All of these things are a minor cost to selling your home.

#5: Give them something to remember about your home:

I read in one article how the home owner made the guest bedroom look like a guest room at a hotel by turning down the bed and putting mints on the pillows. That's a little far fetched for me however I think you should do something special. We have a cute bench as you walk into our house so I placed a ceramic bowl with oranges in it on the bench. (No one has taken an orange so I think they realize it's for decor :) Then on our Kitchen table I pulled out a matching ceramic plate and pitcher to be in place as our center piece to the dinning room. I could add flowers but it's Winter here and that's just not going to be that much of a payoff for me to invest in. However! Putting plants in eye catching places in the home is a great idea as long as you keep up with them!

Things I wont do: The articles say a lot about De-cluttering and I'm sorry but I just can't live trying to figure out which bin has what items I use every day. Here are some things that I don't think are relevant in the Midwest.
  • Renting a storage garage to put extra furnishings & boxed items
  • Take all items out of your bathroom and place in a box that you can pull out and use everyday… Are you nuts! I would misplace everything.
  • Replace windows & repaint rooms white: No… the new home owner can do that
  • Remove all books and movies from shelves and box them
  • Put all items in the basement into storage… Did I mention I do still live in my house that I am selling?
*Some of these things just don't matter to us… we are only two people and really haven't accumulated that many items that our house is cluttered. I believe that as long as everything has it's place and is organizes that the future buyer can look past those things and see the house for what it is. If we were already moved out of the house I think that staging and selling would be an entirely different case for us then the one were in.
Have you moved or sold a house before? What other ideas can you give to helping a house sell fast?

(Oh, did I mention as I was writing this I got another realtor call for a walk-through at 1:30 today? Busy Busy!)


  1. My house has been for sale for almost a year now and for a while there my house was like a museum...but not anymore! I feel bad when its not super clean, but I try. It so rough selling a house, I feel your pain! Luckily my realtor initially staged my home. I didn't care for where she put my stuff, but hey if it works, it works. Hows the market where you are?? Delaware is sad, sad, sad.

  2. I think the hardest part of selling your own house is parting with it, especially if you know you've made a lot of memories in it. I can totally understand how you feel about taking the pictures apart. I'm looking forward to all the changes you've made in your place!

    Abdul Jackson

  3. It looks like you are quite ready for the sale! Those tips will surely help home sellers for prepping their homes and properties. Decluttering and cleaning are the first steps in preparing your house for a sale. Home sellers need to make the house squeaky clean and attractive for visiting buyers and home buying services. Plus, these can help you with the move in the event that the sale is made. You can pack your belongings in a breeze once the place is clean and free of unwanted stuff.

  4. Cleaning your home is one of the best ways to increase the value of your home, especially if you're going to sell it. By doing the necessary repairs, de-personalization, and organizing your home, I'm sure prospective buyers will be invited to take a long look around your home. Cheers and congrats for a job well done! :)


  5. You can add to this list the step “Scrutinize.” :) Sounds weird, but it actually makes sense. It’s like switching to a buyer perspective. Go out of the house and examine it. If you can imagine good things inside, then you’re doing great. Your house is almost ready. Has the house been sold already? :D


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