Clutter, by any other name, is still clutter!
You love your home and if you plan to live there forever, keep it just as you wish. It’s your castle.
But to sell your home, you must think of it as a product. Most of the population cannot see past your personal belongings and imagine themselves in that space! Do not distract the potential buyer with visual clutter! What makes your house feel like a home to you distracts a buyer from seeing it as their home
We all like to be surrounded by the things we love, especially when they remind us of people we cherish. For most of us, family pictures are among the most treasured objects we own. We put them on dressers, tables, shelves, walls, refrigerators – in any available space! After all, that’s what home is about!
Then there is the memorabilia - the trophies, ribbons and medals - a fond recollection of the days when Johnny and Susie won the swim race, baseball game, or soccer match. We love our kids, so to support them; we display their trappings for all to see.
What about the items that we inherited? We have to keep those! We grew up with them. They are part of the family. Our mother would never forgive us if we gave away grandma’s antique teacup collection. It’s on proud display adorning the top of the dining room sideboard.
Nobody supports our favorite university like we do. The kids are away at school now. Johnny always loved football, so of course, his old room is plastered with pennants of all sizes, and even the bedspread is in his favorite school’s colors! His collection of ticket stubs from games attended is plastered on his bulletin board along with program covers and pictures from the tailgates.
Susie has more stuffed animals than any of her friends, and they are patiently waiting on top of her bed. Her dolls still rest in the old stroller. Her prom dress and shoe assortment fills the closet. The vanity boasts a treasure trove of lip glosses and perfume. A kaleidoscope of colorful candles in all shapes and sizes complete the picture.
Your home is truly about family. Every room says “we are happy here”. There is an assemblage in every room that is reminiscent of the good times. You have spent years collecting and acquiring things that you love, to make your house a home.
But you are trying to sell the house - not your personal belongings. You don’t have to throw your treasures away; you are moving. Why not start packing early?
Before you attempt to market your home, and have those MLS pictures published, it is important to clean, de clutter, and de personalize it. 90% of today’s potential buyers search online for homes, often before they even select a Realtor. If they don’t like the pictures they see, they will scroll to the next listing.
Go through every room in your house, including the garage, and de clutter. Take down all of those family pictures; decide what memorabilia and collections that you want to keep. Everything in your closets and cupboards should be edited. Pack anything that is out of season. Sell or donate items that you no longer use. Potential buyers want to see space where they can put their belongings. Edit your furnishings; every space will look larger if it is not over crowded. If offsite storage space is available, use it.
Remember, clutter by any other name, is still clutter!