8 Ways To Prepare For Selling Your Home During Quarantine 

The Quarantine Life isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, is it? If your home life is like mine, adults and children are working/schooling from home.  Laptops are everywhere.  Each of us is searching for some space to call our own and trying to be respectful of the others, especially when work and school zoom time is taking place.  And, our two dogs, while loving the constant attention, are going crazy every time they see someone walk by!

My work as a REALTOR® is quite different now and it has by no means stopped.  I spent some time this week talking with a few sellers about how to use this time to be ready to sell their home as soon as world rights itself.  I’ll share with you the same ideas I shared with my sellers this week.

1.  Declutter

That word is almost cliche now, but it should be your #1 priority.  Decluttering makes your home look and feel bigger.  Don’t go overboard.  There is a nice balance you should strive to maintain.  Your house needs to look like you live there . . .too much decluttering and buyers begin to wonder if someone died, if couples are divorcing, etc.  Ironically, too much decluttering can be distracting.

2.  Organize

Organize closets, pantry space, and any visible storage.  I am trying to do this (not because we are selling our home, but because it needs it!) and it’s overwhelming.  Try to tackle the linen closet one day and maybe allow two or three days for your personal closet.  Closets need to appear spacious and they appear bigger when nothing is on the floor. This means you may have to get rid of a few things.  Definitely create a DONATE pile.

Organizing is important because buyers open closet and cabinet doors when they come in your home.  They want to know if there is enough storage in the bathroom to suit their needs.  They want to see how you use your kitchen storage to organize pots and pans.  Several years ago, a Five Points home went on the market.  Every woman who saw that house opened the cabinets and pantry storage. The seller in this case had organized her pantry with coordinated and labeled containers. It was definitely impressive because I showed that house almost 4 years ago and still remember it.   Every woman left wanting to find organizing containers online at the Container Store.  That seller was an influencer before influencing became a thing!

I continue to be convinced that buyers not only buy a house but they also want to buy a lifestyle.  The women who fell in love with the Five Points home with the crazy organized pantry wanted that seller’s life.  They wanted order and organization.  If your home looks orderly and calm, then buyers believe they can have that level of organization and serenity when they live there.

Don’t stress out if your cabinets aren’t Marie Kondo approved, but declutter and organize.  Get on Pinterest or Instagram for some inspiration.

3. Remove/Rearrange Furniture

Examine your home, room by room, and decide if you have too much furniture in each room?  Could possible excess furniture be used in other areas of your home?  If you have children, have they outgrown some pieces that could be donated?  Sometimes furniture needs to be decluttered as well.

4. Give Purpose To Each Room

Does every room have a purpose?  Many of you may live in a home with a formal living room but you don’t use it at all.  How can you best showcase a room you don’t use?  Looking toward life AFTER Corona, I believe having a home office will be a huge selling point.  Maybe that formal living room could be a home office.

5. Remove Pet Smell

Do you have pets?  I love dogs and our two seem to be all over our house–particularly my bed and on the living room sofa.  Get the pet smell out of your house!  If your pollen tolerance is high, open windows and let some fresh air in.  Wash blankets, dog bed covers, and vacuum furniture.  Every now and then I ask a close friend if my house smells like “dog”.  I encourage you to do the same.  Candles and Febreeze cannot mask that smell.  This should be a weekly thing until your home sells.

6. Fresh Paint

If, and only if, your relationships can handle it, you might want to consider painting if that’s needed.  I’m confessing right here, that my husband would file for divorce if I mentioned the “p” word.  I’d love to touch up some paint right now, but am too scared to try!

7.  Maintain HVAC

Change your HVAC filter and set a reminder on your phone to change regularly until your home sells.

8. Prepare For Buying

If you are selling, that means you are likely buying a home as well.  This is a great time to gather important documents needed to apply for a loan.  For a general list of those documents, click HERE.   Keep these documents where you can access them easily.  Go ahead and start the approval process online.  If you need a recommendation for a lender, please ask one of us.

These suggestions are meant to be starting point.  I hope they help you get going on the next step in your home journey.  We are glad to FaceTime with you to help with furniture placement and how best to utilize your space.  We can also help you asses if your decluttering has gone too far or needs to go a little further! We are here to lend an ear, provide guidance and help you prepare. Contact us and let us know how we can help.

This post was written by CJ&L Real Estate agent, Callie Waller, REALTOR®.

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