Decluttering: The Starting Point To Selling Your Home

Full bookcase with cat stuck amongst books
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Social distancing has been hard for most of us, but for some it has provided the perfect opportunity to step back and take stock of their lives.

Some of us will divorce, some of us will move house, and others will be forced to sell their home or investment property due to the impact of the virus on their jobs. Few of us are likely to emerge from this virus unchanged.

If you are one of those people who have decided to sell, and you’re sitting in your home right now, trying to balancing work with homeschooling, you may be wondering where exactly you start with the sales process.

Well…it starts with decluttering

Throwing out any unwanted possessions or furniture that won’t fit into your next property is a no-brainer from a sales perspective, and it will endear you to your stylist if you hire one. By removing the rubbish you’ve accumulated over the years, and reorganising the items you decide to keep, you create a cleaner, calmer space for your buyers to assess your home during the narrow window of a thirty-minute inspection.

A clean, stylish scheme that clearly demonstrates what you are offering will hopefully trigger emotions your buyer can’t ignore

We want your potential buyers to “fall in love” with your property when they inspect your home. We want them to experience the shivers you experience when you’re excited about a new prospect – whether that’s a new partner, a special meal, or a new home.

However, decluttering isn’t quite as simple as a quick trip to the tip. It requires planning and time to execute it well, and you may be forced to make some painful decisions along the way. And so, to help you on your way, I’ve listed below the best ways to approach an efficient declutter:

Step 1. Decide what style you want to sell to your buyers. A stylist can assist you with this, but if you can’t afford professional advice, consider your buyer demographic, your existing furniture, and the “look” that will maximise your property’s best selling points. For example, if you live by the beach, a coastal theme is the obvious solution. In which case, throw away, sell, or store any items that are superfluous to that style.

Step 2. Compile a list of what stays and what goes, and the destination of the items that are going. Stickers can help, but please consult with your family first!

Step 3. Take that trip to the tip. Alternatively, as I mentioned earlier, you could recycle by selling your items of value on Gumtree or your local “Buy Swap Sell” Facebook page.

Step 4. Take an objective look at what’s left and decide the best way to organise it. This can be tricky when it comes to children’s toys, for example, so you may need a quick storage fix for those on inspection days. You may even consider storing some toys more permanently, which will provide your kids with a nice surprise at the end of the campaign. Don’t forget to tidy up book shelves as well, by limiting the number on display, and stacking or piling them in height order – and colour order if you’re as anal as me. Also, remove any family photographs.

Step 5: Final tweaks on inspection days include clearing the bathrooms of all beauty products and dirty towels; removing any linen from the laundry and outdoor line; and clearing the tables and kitchen bench top of everything except your coffee maker and a few select decorative items such as a vase of fresh flowers or bowl of fruit.

Storage Solutions: Ikea is still my go-to store for storage boxes, although stores such as Kmart and Target also offer offer a comprehensive range. For a more specialist range of products, check out Howard’s Storage World.

Have you discovered any inventive storage solutions?

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