I bet you’ve either seen it on TV, read it in an article or heard it from a friend — you must declutter your home before you sell it. In Prince William County, the real estate market is excellent, so it’s a great time to act! Here’s the what, why and how of decluttering your home before you place it on the market.
Have you ever experienced the feeling you get in a clear, clutter-free space? You can relax and you often simply feel better. This is the feeling you want your buyers to experience when they enter your home. You want them to imagine their furniture and belongings all around. You want them to walk into a closet and think “There’s so much space for my clothes!” And you definitely want them to look at your neat and tidy garage and imagine all the possible storage and work space available.
Completing a full decluttering of your home will present it at its best during each showing. Homes that are decluttered and staged sell faster and for higher prices than those that aren’t. Are you motivated now?
So just what does decluttering entail, you ask? It means you need to tackle every room in your home and get out anything you can. Your goal is to create space — surface space, floor space, counter space, closet space, etc.
It helps to remove as many family pictures as you can. The reasoning behind this is you want your potential buyers to be able to easily imagine themselves owning your home. That’s harder to do if there are family pictures everywhere they look. I know it’s hard to pack them up sometimes, but remember, it’s only for a few months! You’ll also want to remove any unique collections you might have. Generally, these involve a lot of sit-arounds and, though they are your prized possessions, they may not appeal to the masses.
So, now you know what your goal is, but you need a plan of attack. Pick a room to start in. Take a visual inventory of the room and see what catches your eye. It may help to have a friend or relative with a more unbiased opinion to help you out. Create three categories in each room: pack, keep and toss/donate. Have boxes ready for the items to pack, garbage bags for the toss/donate things and prepare to do some rearranging with the items you want to keep out. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you move room to room:
- Pack any sit arounds you can do without for a few months to create surface space.
- Stow away family photographs and collectibles.
- Remove or hide valuables – don’t leave them sitting out.
- Pack all off-season clothes and shoes to create closet space.
- Pack up some books to create space on shelves.
- Pack up non-favorite toys and games. (It will be like Christmas when you bring them out again in the new house!)
- Pack excess linens to make space in the linen closet.
You can store packed items in your attic or basement, but an even better choice is to rent a storage unit or pod. This will allow buyers to see all the extra storage space in your home, too!
For more tips and support when selling your home in Northern Virginia, contact me! And remember, when you list with me, I stage for free when we use your furniture! I’d love to partner with you on your next home buying and selling adventure.
Looking to buy or sell a home in Gainesville, Haymarket and Manassas? Call Realtor® Marcia Goodman at Samson Properties at 703-819-4776.