Staging your home gives it an extra edge when you’re selling. It makes it more attractive to potential buyers and easier for them to see how they can live in the space. But it often requires decluttering, depersonalizing, and deep cleaning your home. You may also need to move a large percentage of your belongings into storage during the process. So what do you do when you have to live in your staged home? Here are the best tips we’ve found for surviving this unique experience.
Make a cleaning schedule
Keeping your staged home clean while you’re living in it is probably the biggest challenge you will face. Your home must be spotless pretty much all the time. You never know when a potential buyer will want to see your place on short notice. For this reason, you should create a cleaning schedule and stick to it. Before every showing, put away clutter, wipe down all surfaces, dust, and vacuum. It may be worth it to hire a cleaning service for the duration of the time your home is on the market.
Use bins and totes to your advantage
Of course, you have items that you need to use every day, like your toothbrush, toothpaste, and soap. Unfortunately, buyers don’t want to see these everyday items when touring your home. That’s why bins and totes can be used to your advantage. Keep all your regularly used items in containers that can easily be stashed out of sight at a moment’s notice.
Stay on top of smells
Just because you’re living in your staged home doesn’t mean you have to eat out every night. But it does mean you need to stay on top of cooking smells. You can combat these odors by opening windows and using natural deodorizers like stovetop potpourri. Lightly scented candles or an essential oil diffuser can also create pleasant smells when buyers are scheduled to arrive.
Strategically schedule showings
One of the trickiest aspects of living in your staged home is scheduling showings. It will be inconvenient to have buyers dropping in with little notice at any time of the day or night. That’s why you may want to consider creating blocks of time a few days a week that your agent can use to schedule showings. It will help to cut down on those frantic moments when you need to vacate as quickly as possible.
Make arrangements for your pets
Finally, you need to consider what you’ll do with your pets when you’re living in your staged home. If possible, you may want to board your pet or have it live with family or friends during the selling process. Pets should not be left in your home during a showing. You should also eliminate any evidence of your pets when you’re staging -- no stinky litter boxes or unsightly crates. This can be a difficult process to negotiate while you’re living in your staged home, but not all buyers are friendly toward pets. Give yourself plenty of time to come up with a plan before buyers start to arrive.
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