Another day of rain here in Upstate New York. Gives me a great opportunity to CLEAR OUT THE CLUTTER. As a professional home stager, clutter is the first most important thing to tackle when you list your home for sale.
Not just the personal photos of you and your kids, and pets and travel. (although many buyers get hung up on “WHO” owns the house they are looking at, and you are telling them), but Im talking all of the clutter. We all have junk drawers. Many of us have many junk drawers. Many people have junk rooms….they started out as a guest room, or craft room or whatever but after time they turn into a free for all. Christmas wrapping paper, valentine projects, tools, old magazines, papers, bills, pet stuff, laundry, name it’s in there, more than likely you can’t name what’s in there!
When I go into client’s homes I start with first things first. The front door. Pick up your shoes, put them away it takes what ? two minutes? Go through your mail NOW. throw out old envelopes, and periodicals and junk mail. NOW. file your bills, and important papers daily or at least once a week and it won’t turn into a daunting task.
Does your front door say Welcome? or keep out? Paint your door a complimentary color of your house. Please don’t leave it white builders primer. You can put in some personality here. They actually make front door paint now, or use a semi-gloss. Of course, prepping is everything. Dont paint over chipped paint. Sand it. Fill holes, sand again and then paint it. Add a seasonal wreath or sign and your on your way to a welcoming entrance.
Look around the exterior entrance, while a realtor is getting door unlocked prospective buyers are looking around, is the paint peeling? Are there weeds? You know yourself when there is pride in ownership it really shows. If a person takes care of the outside of thier home, the inside must follow suit. Right?
In the foyer is it a free for all closet? Coats hung on the back of chairs? More shoes? Newspapers? this is the first impression of the interior of your home. Pick up and put away as soon as you get home. It takes more time to have stuff build up and then have to pick up than it does just to hang your coat.
The next thing people notice is dirt. dust, cobwebs, stains, and smells. check your senses. open windows for fresh air, clean stains on carpets immediately, and if you cant get them clean consider removing carpets. More buyers are looking for hardwood floors these days, and it also raises the value of your home. Clean, clean, clean is just as important as location, location, location.
Back to clutter. start with one room at a time. don’t overwhelm yourself. get three boxes. One for trash, one to donate and one for keepers. clear it out. wash the windows, the blinds, and you will be motivated to keep it going. You may even want to take on painting.
When you look around do you see dust on your dried/fake flowers and plants? Get rid of those. If you have boxes full of stuff, you probably aren’t looking in go through and throw it out. If you haven’t used something in two years get rid of it.
In the kitchen, put away your dishes, keep counters uncluttered. You don’t need the george forman grill left out on the counter along with the juicer, slicer/dicer and all other appliances you hardly ever use. Put them away or have a garage sale.
Garage sales and estate sales are work, but well worth the time and of course you will make $$$$. Remember one persons trash is another persons treasure….(clutter)
good luck. Im off to de-clutter.