The best strategies I use as a declutter and staging expert are to depersonalize the home, declutter cabinets, closets, and drawers and use good energy and flow principles for opening up each room for a more inviting and inspiring walkthrough.
Taking out some dated, bulky and shabby furniture and furniture placement is essential for the ease and comfort of the buyer. The home should look like a model home, with pops of bright colors like turquoise, orange, yellow, and lime green throughout the property. These colors will uplift the mood, especially against a neutral background, and they are current and ideal for selling to a contemporary buyer. If the client still has maroon and forest green colors in drapery and fabric, I do my best to get those colors out or hide them under furniture coverings.
Hiding offensive artwork or decor, family photos, or costly artwork, clothing, accessories, or personal hygiene products is recommended. Eliminating ANY clutter from surfaces, floor, furniture, and drawers, cabinets, and closets (because buyers will open them) is mandatory. I like to neatly pack the clutter and personal belongings in clear bins and place them in the garage or guest closets. Some of my biggest pet peeves are shabby or stained rugs, furniture, bedding, knick-knacks galore, dated colors and old-style furniture, and most of all, fake plants.
Getting the garage spic and span is also extremely important. There should be no mess at all, anywhere.
I create space in cabinets and drawers for things the owner regularly uses during showings to put things away easily and quickly before potential buyers come knocking.
Whether virtual or live, the rules are Declutter, Eliminate Bulk of Personal Belongings, and Design the Space, so it mimics a model home.
Also if you can't walk the property when considering a purchase ask about the condition and location of the home. These two questions are the most important factor to know for a buyer. Ask about overhead plane noise, noisy neighbors, street noise, power lines, mold and structural issues and get a floor plan and see if its conducive to your lifestyle. For example is the master bedroom privately located away from the kid’s and guest rooms? Is the kitchen Off the garage? And is there a quiet grassy yard for a pet?
Marla Stone, Lifestyle Organizer, Keynote Speaker & Author of The Clutter Remedy: A Guide To Getting Organized For Those Who Love Their Stuff Read Marla’s book now https://www.amazon.com/Clutter-Remedy-Guide-Getting-Organized/dp/1608686299Cell only: 949-709-7000
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Flat, neutral decor is excellent for slumber, relaxation, and chilling, yet it will not stimulate, excite, nor keep your brain happy.
Whatever neutrals you choose to keep peace and serenity close to your heart, you will also want pops of color, eclectic artwork, mixed with some hand-carved, vintage, and painted furniture.
Splashes of colors in fabric, design and decorative items keeps your space alive and vibrant and it also helps your brain take notice. The more magic and whimsy versus mundane accents, and decor
will keep you uplifted versus downtrodden.
So here's some ideas to keep the fusirform gyrus (the part of your brain that recognizes beauty,) happy.
For bathrooms, include sparkly soap dishes and trash containers, tile floors with patterns, and swirls with a border of sparkly penny tile. Find gorgeous, thick, and sultry towels and mats. Bestow your bathroom with fanciful wallpapers and paintings. Update your faucets and hardware with gold or polished silver.
For bedrooms, take out the mirrors (bad for restful sleep) and add gorgeous and soothing pastel artwork. Hang a crystal chandelier light or fan to make an ordinary room into a Glamorous suite. When space is ample create a sitting area with some cheetah or tiger print pillows for some pizzazz and you'll have somewhere to sit in your new boudoir and sip champagne.
Kitchens are always better with clean countertops whether granite, marble or sparkly quartz, For the countertop to keep whatever you use regularly place some glam mirror, rustic wood, or seashell Trays for everyday kitchen gadgets, oils, or vinegar. It's always a great idea to have a tray, beautiful bowls or specially designed baskets for anything on top of counters. Getting a glitzy backsplash instead of plain white tile or boring painted walls creates a heavenly haven instead of a solemnly wrong and Dull kitchen space.
Creating an entryway that says you have entered a place, you will never want to leave is greatly the most important and essential signature for a home. A statement you'll want to make happen. An entryway that takes one's breath away, as well as a pause, occurs when your met with bold artwork, a fully stocked bar within the entrance area or within view, a place to sit immediately (a distinguished bench, stools or chairs) with velvet or silk texture and cloth and a riveting pattern and color.
Some fun metal art statue pieces of art on the floor, so the visiting eye moves all over exciting the brains of all who enter always makes the beginning journey into your home an adventure that marks the rest of your home’s grand tour.
Living room, great rooms, and dining rooms are always better with bling. So crystal bowls, some colored glass, art sculptures, and local artisan fair finds will create a museum type observancee. Establishing a relaxing neutral, and comfy down-filled furniture setting for the splendor of the room is essential. The fabric on couches, settees, poofs, stools and chairs is better with chenille, satins, silk, and velvet in neutral colors. With neutral furniture you will always have a background that will be easily able to be changed and charged with various splashes of pillows, decor and artwork throughout seasons and all the years spent in your sacred space.
For more information about changing and charging up your space, call 949-709-7000 and ask for Marla. She will give you a free 30-minute in-home consulting session about lightening and brightening your rooms and your mind.
Save your sanity by improving your environment. www.i-deal-lifestyle.com
Beyond Cleaning: Getting Your Home Ready to Sell
People who put their homes on the market are often surprised by how much work it takes to get everything in order and to get their home ready to show. Proper staging is essential for making a positive impression on potential buyers; however, it’s very detailed work and may force you to reassess your home’s condition. It’s easy to assume that everything’s in acceptable condition, only to find out that your realtor believes otherwise.
Houses absorb a lot of wear and tear over the years, and much of it is very noticeable to a discerning home buyer, and that’s the problem. Even things that seem minor to you can leave a buyer with a negative impression. Remember that perception is the reality: A leaky faucet may cause someone to assume that the rest of your home is in poor shape. I-Deal-LIfestyle™ Professional Organizer offers some tips and apps you can use as you determine what needs to be done before letting a potential buyer into your home.
Know Your Worth
Before you start making any big staging moves, be sure you know what’s worth investing in based on your home’s value. It probably doesn’t make sense to spend $2,000 repainting your entire home or freshening up your landscaping if you won’t recoup these costs in the profit from your sale, but you should consider spending money and hiring a team to repair things like replacing window glass or tackling any roofing work.
Before you enlist the help of a real estate agent, you can get a ballpark idea of what houses in your area are going for by downloading apps from Redfin, Trulia, or Zillow, to name a few. These apps allow you to check out listings in your area, which can give you a rough estimate of what you can expect when yourhome finally hits the market.
Good Flow, Lots of Space
A house with plenty of flow and open space is more likely to stand out with buyers who can easily imagine how they might transform it. That means clearing out all the clutter and removing any outdated or excessively large and bulky furniture. Go room by room and organize everything in such a way that you know what’s being thrown away, donated, or placed in storage. Remember that clutter means more than loose piles of papers strewn about or shoes and toys that somehow never get picked up. Extra bookcases, televisions, dressers, cabinets, and loveseats may need to be stored or disposed of to ensure that nothing distracts a potential buyer. Need help with decluttering? I-Deal-LIfestyle™ Professional Organizer can connect you with a local organizer who can help you create order and discard the accumulation of belongings that could be weighing you down.
Deep Clean and Depersonalize
It’s hard to keep a home clean when it may be on the market for months, and keeping it clean is especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic. Consider hiring a cleaning company to make yours look pristine and ready to sell, and continue to keep it clean during the selling process. Opting for freshly-cleaned carpeting can make a home look brand new and get rid of lingering odors. Don’t forget those dark, musty spots that haven’t been cleaned in years, which buyers will surely sniff out. Believe it or not, there are house cleaning apps (Tody, Home Routines, etc.) that can help you out when it’s time to scrub.
Depersonalizing is a crucially important part of staging. It’s how you’ll deemphasize your presence and allow buyers to see themselves as the owners. Many agents advise that your walls should be almost bare, with nothing more than a smattering of generic and non-threatening artwork (i.e. natural landscapes).
The Right Paint
Choosing the right color for your interior walls is an important step in creating a space that’s conducive to prospective buyers. Neutral colors are widely considered the best way to go because they won’t distract visitors the way a rich, luxuriant red or shade of lavender might. Remember, the home you want others to see shouldn’t be a house dominated by your personal tastes; instead, it should be one they can envision as their own. Beige, tan, or shades of gray are considered the best choices by real estate agents. By the same token, slapping on a couple of coats of white paint can be noticeable because it is too bland. A nice mid-range shade is optimal. If you need help, This Old House has a list of apps, including ColorSmart and Paint My Place, that can help when it comes time to select and match the right paint for your home.
Drawing Them In
Giving your property curb appeal is essential for getting people to stop by or make inquiries. You can improve your curb appeal by tidying up your landscaping, planting flowers in a pot by the front door, and making sure the lawn is clear of weeds. Above all, make certain that your house can easily be seen from the street as people drive by, particularly if you have a lot of trees and/or bushes in the front yard. Need some landscaping ideas? Apps such as Houzz and iScape can provide you with some inspiration to make your own yard look great.
Most people expect a lot of cleaning and minor fixes when getting ready to place their homes on the market. But there’s a lot more to staging than vacuuming and dusting. Think of it as transforming your space into someone else’s. With the right approach and a little help from a handful of apps, you can make your home a hot commodity that stands out.
When you’re ready to clear out the clutter for good and to bring organization into your life, look to I-Deal-LIfestyle™ Professional Organizer to connect with a qualified local organizer. And to ensure you make this transformation a lifestyle change, pick up the The Clutter Remedy Book today! Call 949-709-7000 for a free consultation.
Marla is known as the Declutter Your Strategy™ expert. Marla earned her BA in Psychology and a Master's in Social Work and is the founder of