How to Declutter Your Home to Sell

How to declutter your home to sell_Blog

With all the effort you are putting into listing your property, it is crucial that you maximise your chances to get the best price. Decluttering your house before selling is a great way to stack the odds in your favour and find the best buyer. By removing excess furniture and personal belongings, you can showcase your home's features and make each room look its best.

But how to declutter your home to sell?

The key is to appeal to as many buyers as possible. This means removing any quirky or personal features that you may love but may not be to everyone’s tastes.

One of the challenges is styling the space so it looks inviting but not sterile. It can be hard to take a step back and look at your property objectively, especially if you have lived there for a long time. We all become attached or accustomed to the way our home looks and that can make decluttering your home to sell even more difficult.

Fortunately, there are many ways to make the process easy, so we created this guide to assist you.

Why declutter your home for sale

Getting your home ready for sale is an essential step of the inspection process. You need to prepare it in a way that will help potential buyers project themselves living there. This is when decluttering comes into play.

One of the key reasons decluttering is so essential when selling is that it allows for the space to be depersonalised. It is hard for buyers to imagine their life in your home if your personal items are too prominent in every room. This means that you should identify trinkets and family photos that don’t serve a design purpose and store them away. Be mindful not to make spaces look too empty. Leave art and decorative furnishings to ensure your home still appears warm and inviting to buyers.

Another upside to decluttering

A great benefit of styling your home for sale is that it also gives you a head start on the moving process. Boxing up excess personal belongings and throwing away anything useless will save you some precious time down the track. It will also spare you a bit of stress during the moving period. After all, the last thing you will want to do is pay to take moving boxes to your next home that you are likely never open.

Prepare to let go

We are all emotionally invested in our homes which makes packing up and moving out always a little difficult. Even if you are excited about your next property, it is likely you will have fond memories of your home.

Decluttering is a great way to help ease any lingering emotional attachment. You will be spending a lot of time reminiscing as you fill packing boxes but remind yourself of the exciting new chapter ahead. Bit by bit you should start to see your property as a house and not just your home – even though it will always have a special place in your heart.  

While it may seem an overwhelming task, remind yourself that decluttering is key to attracting the best possible price for your home. If you are struggling, ask some friends or family to help you to be ruthless in deciding what you will take with you, what to donate or throw away. A garage sale is also a great idea to sell off unwanted items and even make a little bit of cash which you could use towards buying something for your new home.

When to start decluttering your house?

You can never be too proactive when prepping your house for sale, so as soon as you think of selling your property, you can start decluttering. If this seems unrealistic, then aim to begin the process at least once you have found your real estate agent, and definitely before professional photography is taken. Set aside at least one to two days to go through each room depending on the size. So set yourself a deadline and work backwards from there.

Where to start decluttering your house?

The best places to start decluttering are rooms that need to return to their original or most common function. Remember that people generally look for bedrooms and extra space when buying a property, so it might be best to showcase what your home really has to offer.

Suppose you have been utilising a spare bedroom for alternative purposes, such as a home gym or storage room. In that case, it might make it difficult for buyers to see the real potential on offer. Remove all the items that alter the use of the space and store them. If the room ends up empty, don't hesitate to use home staging to give it a purpose. If you don't have the budget to buy or rent new furniture, then virtual staging can be a great alternative.

Once you have finished decluttering these rooms, move on to communal areas. Pay extra attention to the living room, kitchen and bathroom, as these rooms are usually the most important to buyers. Finish off with the bedrooms and other smaller spaces.

Remember to tone down features walls to a more neutral colour and remove anything that personalises the space. Be sure that any changes will appeal to a boarder buyer market. This doesn’t mean blank walls, but maybe not a vivid colour that could turn off potential purchasers. This is all about attracting the next buyer and not showcasing your own personal style.

Find a storage solution

It is likely you will have a number of removal boxes filled by the time you are finished decluttering your home. It is not uncommon for redundant items to be stored in the garage, however, if you want to be able to show off this space to potential buyers then you may have to find another option. It might be worthwhile hiring some storage space or asking a family member or friend if you could keep them at their place until you have sold your property.

Feeling stuck?

Remember you are not alone in this journey. Your real estate agent or home stylist will happily provide ideas on how to present the best possible version of your home. They will also be able to tell you what buyers in your market will find appealing. Take before and after photos as you sort through each room and marvel at the work you have done. Be sure to celebrate your success and even treat yourself once the job is done.

7 house decluttering tips

So, are you ready to start the process? Here are 7 house decluttering to sell tips that will help you succeed in this task:

  1. Take the emotion out of the process. If you find it hard to do this, get someone who is cut-throat to help you. 
  2. Get inspiration online from professionals such as Marie Kondo or Alejandra Costello.
  3. Sort things into what you are keeping or throwing away. This will save you time later.
  4. Clear off surfaces, particularly window sills and kitchen benches and move into cupboards.
  5. Invest in stylish storage options such as filing systems and cupboards. If you need it now, you will likely need it at your new place too. 
  6. Remember to declutter the garden and garage as well.
  7. Make a start as soon as you can, even if it is small.

Your real estate agent can also advise you on how to declutter your home for sale and make the most of the space your home offers. Book a free property appraisal today to get more decluttering tips and much more precious advice to maximise your selling price.

DISCLAIMER - The information provided is for guidance and informational purposes only and does not replace independent business, legal and financial advice which we strongly recommend. Whilst the information is considered true and correct at the date of publication, changes in circumstances after the time of publication may impact the accuracy of the information provided. LJ Hooker will not accept responsibility or liability for any reliance on the blog information, including but not limited to, the accuracy, currency or completeness of any information or links.

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