Preparing your Home for Sale – Part Three

Simply cleaning a house and doing routine maintenance, however, is only a small part of staging.
Home staging involves:
De-cluttering: This is the removing your personal belongings from the viewer’s sight. It helps in taking away the personality that comes with your own belongings. Usually, buyers visualize their own belongings in your home when planning to by it and with your stuff all over the place this might just hinder their decision making. It also makes your home appear fresher and more spacious.
Clutter is off-putting not only to prospective buyers but even to a person who loves to be neat and organized. Clutter makes a place look unnecessarily busy, confusing and the room’s dimension look and feel much smaller.
Homes crammed with photos, certificates, memorabilia etc., make it hard for buyers to envisage fitting in their own belongings. For this reason, it is of utmost importance to minimize surface clutter in particular, take all ornaments, stacks of old newspapers and magazines, vases, photo frames, bits and pieces etc. and remove as much as you can, or if not sure, at least half of it (also known as the 50% rule). If you need to, pack things away in cupboards or in a storage area to be brought out again once the contracts have been signed and exchanged.

Well known tips for de-cluttering your home

  1. Identify the problem areas. Usually these are where you have not been in a while and are covered in dust, piles of items that you cannot even identify how old they are, for example, piles of newspapers or magazines, little bits of nothings all over the bench-tops etc.
  2. Start with the thing you feel like not doing at all. This way you free up energy for the rest of your cleaning efforts. The satisfaction and relief of de-cluttering an area that actively makes you feel annoyed, guilty or overwhelmed is just so great.
  3. Once all is sorted out, you don’t want to go back and start de-cluttering after a few weeks. Take care of clutter as it comes in or starts to build up.

Basically it is easier to deal with it straight away by either filing, or throwing it away.

Set a due date or expiry date for all the stuff you keep and if after a period of time, you haven’t used or needed any of the items, then get rid of it. Give it away, bin it, recycle or find someone who needs it and will make use of it. Otherwise, all this stuff will be occupying space and cluttering your home for no apparent reason.

  1. Ensure that everything has its rightful place in the house where it fits best and has most usefulness.
  2. Carry a basket around with you while cleaning in which to put all clutter. This will speed your cleaning process and make it easier to keep up momentum while you see exactly what you are achieving as you go along. The items can be sorted and restored to their rightful locations later on when everything is clean and tidy.
  3. Reward yourself for a job well done. Find something nice you like doing to treat yourself with after you’ve done battle with clutter and are satisfied with the results. Whatever it may be, just reward yourself so that you feel inspired to keep dealing with it on an ongoing basis until your home is sold.