If you’re like many people in Scottsdale, you need to know how to stage a house for sale while living in it. While it can be a challenge, these tips will keep you on track.
How to Stage a House for Sale While Living in It
Most people have to continue living in their homes while they’re on the market. In many cases, it doesn’t make financial sense to move out of a house and into a new one when it means making two separate mortgage payments. Sometimes there aren’t any other options, such as when a homeowner has to relocate for work – but usually, paying the mortgage on an empty house is a bit of a stretch.
That means you have to stage your house for sale while you’re living in it. And although it’s tough to keep your home spotless and ready for prospective buyers to tour while you’re conducting your daily business, you can use these five tips to make it easier:
- Put about a third of your belongings in storage
- Hire a professional to deep-clean the house
- Put “whisk away” baskets in every room
- Give everyone in the house a job
- Pick up every evening before bed
Here’s a closer look at each.
#1. Put about a third of your belongings in storage
A professional home stager will tell you to put about 33 percent of the things you own into a storage unit and keep them there until you move into your new home. Practically, the way that works is you go through your belongings and remove everything you haven’t used in the past 6 months. If there are things you have used in the past few months but know you won’t use them between now and the time you start packing for your move, go ahead and pack those, too. Think about:
- Kitchen appliances
- Seasonal clothing
- Memorabilia and keepsakes that aren’t on display in your home
#2. Hire a professional to deep-clean the house
You could scour your home from top to bottom, but how long would it take you? Would your time be better spent doing other things? Often, it’s best to hire a professional for a one-time deep-cleaning; that way, you can maintain what the cleaner or crew has done without having to scrub baseboards, dust on top of cabinets and wash out window sashes. Remember, too, that professional cleaners know where all the hotspots are and often know how to clean more efficiently than the rest of us do.
#3. Put “whisk away” baskets in every room
Laundry baskets, wicker bins and other types of baskets are must-haves when you’re staging your home to sell. Keep one in each high-traffic room in the house. That way, when you get notice of a showing, you’ll be able to whisk away any items that don’t belong in the room – and if you don’t have time to put everything away, put the basket in your car and take it with you when you leave. You can put everything back where it belongs when you come home.
#4. Give everyone in the house a job
If you live with other people, start doling out the responsibilities. Give each person a specific job, like sweeping the kitchen floor each night, vacuuming the living room or folding laundry as soon as it comes out of the dryer. When you assign specific tasks, you can simply check in to ensure that they’re done – and that takes some of the pressure off you.
#5. Pick up every evening before bed
Pick up the house each evening before you go to bed. You’ll have a clean slate to work with every morning if you walk through each room to ensure that there’s nothing out of place at the end of the day.