Selling a home is a huge undertaking for anyone, especially us with kids! (Can I get an “Amen?”) Here are some valuable tips we have found that help with keeping your house show-ready and guiding your kids through the home-selling process.
Tip 1: “WHY ARE WE MOVING?”/ Explaining Why
Before the kids come home to a “FOR SALE” sign on their front lawn and kick and scream because they “DIDN’T KNOW!!”, explain what’s happening. Tell them before you list that you have decided to move, and tell them the reasons. Explain what will be happening because your home is listed: there will be people coming to see the house and if they like it, they will make offers to buy your home etc. Tell them the pros of moving to a new home: A new bedroom, new friends in the neighbourhood, bigger backyard, new parks. Moving can be difficult, especially if it’s the only home they’ve lived in, it might take some time!
Tip 2: Let’s De-Clutter
De-cluttering is always a great step in showing off your home. We ask our clients to keep fridge magnets, kid’s art, and tests off of the fridge when showing. Keeping the kids’ bedrooms tidy is important (and we all know how hard that is!) Help your kids sort through what toys they would still like to play with when the house is listed, and other toys can be stored away until after you move. Keep the toys they still want to play with in boxes out of sight, but easily accessible. We know how much kids need blankie and their favourite stuffed animals!
Keep decor to a minimum. Taking down that life-size Justin Bieber poster in your 12 year old daughters room for just a couple weeks might help (if she can handle it!) At Property Mom, we get the kids involved by having them sign a “Cleaning Contract” to keep their rooms clean for the duration of the home-selling process! (This is our gift to you, parents 🙂 ) And once your house is sold, we reward them with a fun present!
Tip 3: Let the Staging Begin!
Home staging can be invaluable to your home selling! Sometimes Buyers aren’t totally into the whole bubble-gum pink, My Little Pony decaled room. Re-painting in neutral colours could be helpful for Buyers to visualize a bedroom fit for any age. Instead of having a shoe rack piled with stinky shoes in your entrance, you could consider moving the shoes to the garage or mudroom during showings. Store some of the contents of over-stuffed closets like backpacks and coats in the garage or mudroom. Keep all small appliances off of the counters in the kitchen, and we always suggest storing frying pans in the oven when showings are taking place! Consider buying or borrowing paintings or mirrors to hang on the walls. This gives the home more welcoming feel. You can find a lot of good tips to stage your home here: http://realtormag.realtor.org/home-and-design/feature/article/2009/03/staging-budget
Tip 4: Involving Your Kids in Packing
Kids might find it sad to see their room being packed up and realize everything is gone. Keep them involved by giving them a job of labeling the boxes (we have attached a kid-friendly labels!). Older kids can help younger ones decide how to pack up their things. Be patient, kids get distracted easily- you might have to pack the same box a couple times because “Mom, I need to play with that toy right now!!” We get it! Also when purging, do it when the kids are elsewhere. You will spare yourself a toddler melt-down when tossing no longer used toys.
Now that we’ve gone through some valuable tips, we hope that you’ll have a great home selling experience! If you need any help or more tips from the Realtors at Property Mom Real Estate, give us a call!