Furnished Or Empty - Selling A Vacant Home

Real Estate Agent with JOD Realty, LLC

If you have to sell a home that is unoccupied, due to death of owners, divorce, a move, whatever, one of the big questions is should you sell it with the furniture still in the house or move the furniture out?  Long ago, before I got into real estate, I had agents tell me to get everything out so potential buyers could see themselves and their furniture in the house.  Bad idea.  After I got in the business I realized what a big mistake that was!  You want the house to be furnished.  If it is empty, people see an empty house.  If it is well furnished, they see a home.  Big difference.  It is also amazing how ALL the little scratches, chips and dirt are MUCH more evident in an empty house.

A big advantage of selling an empty house is that you have the opportunity to really stage the house.  A staged home can look beautiful, but it can be a pain to live in.  So grab the chance and get rid of all clutter, clean like a demon, and arrange the furniture to maximize space and views.  Get rid of big clunky, furniture.  Set the table as if for a feast.  There are lots of things to do since no-one is living in the house.  Make that potential buyer see the possibilities in your home!

And don’t think you can set it and forget it.  Every few days you need to go in and make sure the house still smells OK.  A vacant home can get that “vacant smell”.  Hard to describe, but you know it when you smell it.  So open windows, change the air filters, walk around a bit and take the time to see if anything needs to be adjusted.  You will be glad you did.


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Jeff Rickert
RE/MAX Property Specialists - Pocono Lake, PA
Realtor, RSPS - Poconos - The Jeff Rickert Team

Half empty half full. Some people can see the house as there's some can not.

Depends on the area.

Dec 15, 2009 06:30 AM #1
Julia Odom
Select Realty Professionals - Chattanooga, TN
Chattanooga Homes for Sale

As a buyer's agent, I prefer to see a vacant house - in part because it's easier to see the flaws. If you have an odd shaped room or when that doesn't seem to have any particular purpose it's really important to stage it. Otherwise it seems unusable and wasted space.

Dec 15, 2009 07:22 AM #2
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