Hey all – I am including a very solid article from Joel McDonald, a real estate broker from Colorado, and owner of a large Boulder, Colorado, real estate firm. I found the article to be very insightful for those looking to put their home on the market. Enjoy! Kent
“Kids, keep quiet! Go to your room! No, go outside! Somebody’s coming. Pick up those toys! The agent is coming over with a prospect.” Sounds like the opening of a comedy show, or more like a tragedy if the Realtor is coming over with someone to evaluate your home. When you have children in the home it can be hard to keep the house in condition to show. Here are some things to take into consideration, to address this problem and still be in a position to show the home with a good outcome.
Many children tend to stockpile toys of all different types. They like variety. As a parent you might have gotten accustomed to the sight of toys tossed around in a mess, but a person who is not used to small children can not only observe it but have an unfavorable reaction. The first step, then, in getting your home ready to go on the market is to organize your children’s belongings so they can easily be put away and mostly out of sight. This may involve things such as toy chests, bookshelves, or big storage boxes. Find storage that can be used in the room without becoming too obvious. You don’t need to hide everything.
Organizing the outside of your home is what provides the initial impression and so it is very important. Find ways to store or arrange the children’s outdoor toys in a neat and tidy way to present the outside of your house well.
Giving It Up
The periodic practice of freeing oneself from possessions that are in excess of your needs on a regular basis such as donating to Goodwill, or having a garage sale, is just as pertinent to the children’s things as it is to your rest of the old treasures. This is a good skill whether you are moving. Decisions have to be made. Handling how to let things go is a necessary part of living. This process can be a learning opportunity for the children, though it will be important to get their participation and not force their decisions. That would only get in the way of the lesson to be gained.
Even if you cannot get rid of a thing, you can accomplish quite a lot if you do a good job of using smart storage. Besides, keep in mind that anyone looking at a home where a family is raising young children will generally be interested in a family home in the first place and will be alert to aspects of the home that are good for children. Demonstrating that the children’s rooms can store all of the toys and games can be a good means of showing off that feature of your home.
A little discipline will be necessary to maintain things in order after you get it all set. The task of keeping your home reasonably tidy after it is all fixed up can be difficult but not out of the question. Once you have appropriate storage, keeping everything straight will be much more manageable. Try to limit the number of different things your children are playing with while you are in the process of selling your home. One idea is to make the goal of keeping the house clean a game, or adventure for your kids. They may even help motivate you to keep your own things in their places as well.
There is no need to turn your home into a lifeless clean home where no children can play. Many people in the market for a family home are happy to see that a house is lived in, and some toys being in use is a comforting touch. Just be aware that it should be kept on the high side of normal. Perfection in the placement of all the toys is not expected.
If you have children who are spectacularly messy it might be a step-saver to buy a rug for them that can be picked up and put away when potential buyers come by. Keeping the little artists’ paints put away and out of sight while you’re trying to sell your home might be a good plan, at least until you move into your new home.
In summary, it’s not too difficult, is it, to allow the children to continue with their normal and healthy play while offering your home for sale in the attractive condition that a home sale requires. There is some gain to be experienced, in learning cooperation. A little patience and careful attention, along with regular attention to clutter, will make the sale of your home with little children in the picture much easier to manage.
This article was provided by Automated Homefinder, Colorado’s top Boulder real estate professionals.