When you have children, selling a home is usually a whole lot easier if you can move your entire family and personal belongings out before the showings begin. If you can’t buy a new home before selling your existing property, however, you’ll need to find ways to keep your home clean, organized, and clutter-free while you and your kids continue to reside there. For some tips that can help to make this task easier on you and the rest of your family, read on!
Move Items Into Storage
Whether your home is already on the market or you’re getting ready to list it, remember to pack away as many items as possible—especially out-of-season items, family photos, refrigerator art, excess kitchen appliances, or other belongings that you and your children haven’t used within the previous six months. The fewer items you have lying around the house, the less work you’ll need to do as you prep your home for showings.
To store your belongings while your home is on the market, Charlesgate Realty Group recommends renting a storage unit or optimizing the space in your garage, closets, vehicles, and shed. Since you’ll be showing your garage and closets to potential buyers, however, use labeled storage bins to keep these areas as tidy and attractive as possible. If you’re in need of more space, peer-to-peer storage could be another viable option.
Keep Some Rooms Off Limits
In addition to storing as many items as possible, you’ll keep your home clean and tidy between showings with potential buyers if you avoid using some parts of the home until after it sells. If you have multiple bathrooms, for instance, you may choose to keep all but one bathroom off limits to your family—as this will eliminate the need to clean each bathroom before a showing. Then, keep this bathroom in near-perfect condition by treating it to a quick cleaning at the end of each day.
Keep Odors at Bay
Instead of simply throwing out the trash when the bag is full, eliminate odors completely by regularly washing your garbage cans, vacuuming underneath furniture, and wiping down any areas in your home that attract grease, dust, and other messes. By tackling odor-causing areas such as these, you’ll eliminate unappealing smells that could turn buyers off in an instant.
Moreover, you’ll keep your home fresh and odorless if you strategically place mint, basil, and scented geraniums throughout your home—especially in the kitchen and bathrooms. According to Coldwell Banker, other ways to freshen up a home include:
- Diffusing essential oils such as grapefruit or lavender.
- Boiling water with cinnamon, cloves, lemon, or another type of citrus.
- Spreading a layer of baking soda onto your carpeting before removing it with a vacuum cleaner.
Move Toys Into One Room
When you have kids, their toys and electronics can easily end up in every room of the home. To keep your home organized and free of clutter while it’s on the market, however, try banishing toys from all rooms except one—whether it be a playroom, bedroom, or game room. Then, use storage bins or decorative baskets to organize toys by type—as this will make cleaning up even easier after playtime.
Get Your Home Show-Ready in a Moment’s Notice
While many showings are planned at least several hours in advance, there will likely come a time when you have less than an hour to clean and organize your home before a potential buyer views it. However, there are several things you can do to prepare the home for a last-minute showing, such as doing a quick tidying around the home, turning on all the lights, and buffing any stainless steel appliances.
Showing a home isn’t quite as simple when you’re a busy parent, but it certainly isn’t impossible. With proper storage, cleaning, and organizing, your home will be ready for buyers, whether it’s a scheduled or last-minute showing.