Showing your house while actively living in it is daunting. Whether you live in a small cottage in Edgewater MD, a townhouse in Glen Burnie or a two story home in Severna Park, MD, owners must be ready at a moments notice for potential buyers to view their home. As part of our staging consultation, TLC Home provides tips on how to live in and show a house with least effort and maximum success. We focus on tweaking those most used systems and routines: the enter/exit zone, kitchen counter activity, laundry, dressing, bathrooms and pets. These high frequency, essential systems can’t be packed away and dealt with at a later date. Instead, adjust organizational systems already in place and focus on minimizing non-essentials, concealing must haves, creating stricter routines, and having scoop-and-go capabilities. Renting a storage space pre-showing is beneficial. It will give you flexibility and reduce stress when deciding what is and isn’t essential and where everything will go.
Minimize nonessentials! Carve out hidden space for items in your home that would normally be visibly accessible. Having your bathrobe on the hook on the back of your bathroom door is convenient, but is one more thing you have to put away when potential buyers are coming over. The first step to having your home show ready is to go through your high frequency areas and remove all non-essentials. Store winter coats, clothing and surplus laundry supplies, pack entertaining serveware, and choose a core wardrobe so the rest can be packed, as well. Reducing what is in your home will help you find new places and create new systems for what is left behind.
Conceal Carefully! Create removable storage within your home to simplify pre-showing tidying. In enter/exit zones, keys and jackets are a necessary part of daily life. Use attractive baskets or bins to contain essential loose items that can be easily concealed in your newly spacious hall closet. In the kitchen, home owners can create a new home for surface essentials in their now-empty junk drawer. A simple solution for bathrooms when living in a house for sale: just Think College! Have personal totes that can be stored concealed when not in use.
Create Stricter Routines! Make the decision to add an additional 15 minutes of tidying each morning. Increase laundry and trash removal frequency to prevent a buildup in either area. Having less in your closet is great, but only if you put away your bathrobe in the morning and return clothing to their homes after wearing. Having less in your house and the space to store everyday items is a great start, but having a stricter daily routine means less stress when you get the call that a potential buyer is going to view the property.
Scoop-And-Go! Have scoop totes ready with a plan in place to store. No matter how hard you try, something will be out or in use. Your thinned-out pantries, cabinets, closets and cars make great storage spots. But, not everything that needs to be removed is inanimate. Pets fall into the minimal evidence category. Have a plan in place for where pets and their accoutrement can go, such as a family member, a neighbor, or pet day care.
Having these systems in place will make staging, showing and selling easier. Utilizing these steps means that by the time an offer is in place, your nonessential items are already packed and what is left over will be easier to organize and move to your new home!