Show of hands...how many of your kitchens look this spectacular everyday? Zero? Include my personal home in that number as well. While I would love to have my home look as fresh as the Pinterest pages...it simply does not happen. With hectic school schedules and messy husbands (sorry fellas; we ❤ you though) and a full-time business to run we do the best we can do. However I am not selling my home; I am selling yours. The goal of every homeowner is a quick sale for the most money. That is my job. But it starts long before the first showing. When I sold my first personal home it was as organized and tidy as ever. I always kept it clean and ready for last minute Realtor calls asking if they could show while sitting in my drive. Of course! Everything was clean, beds were made and toys put away, kitchen sparkling, pictures hanging straight, no weird smells etc. So when it didn't sell right away I was stumped. It wasn't overpriced, in a decent neighborhood. I had nice enough things - nothing outdated. Then I learned the most valuable piece of information I have ever learned when selling a home. "Pack your stuff away, you WILL be moving anyways." Mind blown! - and as an added bonus you will be more than halfway there when it comes to moving. All these years later and I still use that with my own clients. Remember those nice enough things I spoke about? Those were my things that I loved, not necessarily everyone else had the same taste. So I looked at my home as an outsider would and boxed up every room one at a time of anything we wouldn't use in a weeks time. A lot of things were donated - another added bonus; not taking a bunch of stuff you will never use to your new home! I took all of my photos and all but a few art pieces off of the walls. Counters in kitchens and baths were empty but one or 2 decorative pieces. Secret tip: Hide everything you need on a daily under the cabinets. Yes
people will look under there but trust me they will remember the clutter free counter space more. I was fortunate enough to have a full basement to store all of the boxes we would be taking with us. But if you don't have a basement - free space in a garage or attic will work too. I have known people to rent storage units as well. When I sign a listing agreement with a client this is our first step. Let's get the house photo and show ready! Clean and declutter. I keep an eye out for interesting items of the homeowner that are a neutral style to use later. If you find you don't have anything usable there are a number of stores that have penny pincher budgets in mind - and I personally use them all. People are actually shocked when they ask where I get my decor from. It's really a number of places. I build or make a lot of things from flea market finds. You would be surprised at the cute items you can find at Tractor Supply or Big Lots in the spring. If there are items you want to purchase for your new home and you have money to buy to your hearts desire - then buy the things you want from the luxury shops. You can stage your current home and take them with you when you go. Or you can go the on a budget route - purchase a few inexpensive things that you just might wind up loving as much as the luxury items. The point is you don't have to spend a lot of money to look like you did. You would be surprised how many times I've heard "My house has never looked this good!" It's amazing to see the transformation from "Oh my, we have our work cut out for us" to "Wow!" That under contract sign within the first few days makes it all worth it.