Staging your home for potential buyers is hard enough on its own, but maintaining that perfect look is even harder when you’re still living there. When a house goes on the market, it has to be ready all day every day for potential buyers to take a tour. The house has to be at its most attractive and inviting, and let’s be honest, none of us live in homes that are picture perfect at all times.
When I work with my clients, the first thing I do is take them on a tour of their house so they can see it through the eyes of a potential buyer. We start at the curb because that is where potential buyers will start deciding whether this is somewhere they want to live.
Not only does this mean the house itself has to be appealing (no leaning porches and no peeling paint), but it also means the yard and sidewalk have to be immaculate. In winter, you’ll have to shovel the sidewalk as soon as it snows. In spring and summer, you’ll want to keep the grass mowed and watered, but also keep the lawn clear of any clutter, including the hose. Every day you have to go over the lawn and make sure there’s no stray trash or branches that may have fallen or been blown over to your yard. Remember: you have just seven seconds to make a good impression, so make it count.
Keep It Spotless
It’s hard to keep kitchens and bathrooms spotless when they’re in use, but any spot can turn off a potential buyer. This means wiping down the stove, the kitchen sink, and all the equipment in the kitchen before you leave for the day. Make sure all the dishes are washed and put away (don’t leave anything sitting in the sink).
The same goes for the bathroom. Wipe down the sink, the mirrors, and the shower/bathtub, and store hygiene products out of sight (you might even have to put them in the car and take them with you).
In the bedrooms, make sure the beds are always made and there are no stray clothes lying around – clean clothes should always be put away, and dirty clothes in the hampers.
All the little things we love because they keep us comfortable need to be put away because they imply there might be something wrong with the house. For example, if you like to keep a fan next to the bed, it implies there isn’t enough airflow in the house. Lots of blankets can make it look like the house doesn’t get warm. If you get cold easily or you just like snuggling under the blankets, you won’t have a chance to explain your story to the potential buyer about why you keep certain things in certain places.
Divide and Conquer
In order to make sure the house is staged and ready for potential buyers to tour the place every time you leave the house, everyone currently living in it needs to play a part in maintaining the home’s staging. Come up with a list of tasks that need to be done in order to get and keep the home ready for tours and assign everyone in the house at least one thing on that list. Maintain a list of who has which job so you can make sure everyone stays on track.
Get Another Opinion
You and your family can do a lot on your own to make sure your home is staged for buyers, but you need a professional eye to identify the flaws that could turn them off and the qualities that will draw them in. To get started staging your home the right way, contact me or call me today at (314) 623-4594.