Ten things to remove before listing...

Reblogger Dale Taylor
Real Estate Agent with Re/Max 10 New Lenox Illinois

The home had great curb appeal.  Upon entering the front door I knew it was a very salable listing in radiant Richton Park, Illinois, a far southern suburb of Chicago.  Mrs. Seller had a very impressive collection of designer ceramic figurines.  They were displayed on beautiful furniture giving eye appealing accents to various rooms. 

I thought how do I tell my gracious proud valued Seller she will need to store them away.  I poundered how to do this as I toured the 2500 square foot foyered quad-level styled home with a great open floor plan whereby the kitchen overlooks the family room. 

I helped her to picture parents with children touring her home and how a child could see her precious collection as a toy doll inviting them to pick up and carry around with them while touring the home.  There is an old saying, a picture is worth a thousand words.  She took possession of the picture I gave her and no more words were needed to be said on the matter.  We did come to a compromise with her leaving her larger prized figurines on display behind a locked glass displayed cabinet. 

Lindsey, below gives important recommendations of other items to put away to prepare a home for touring.  You'll appreciate her ideas...   

Original content by Lindsey Hasford

Everyone has heard rumors of de-cluttering when it's time to sell your home. But, what does that really mean?  Before going hog wild and moving out... here's a few of the most important things to consider removing before you list your home for sale.

10. Personal photos. I don't always recommend removing photos of the 'family' but if you have hallways filled with photos or photos on every end table it is probably necessary. Buyers really DO get distracted by them. They will take them all in as they walk down the hall. Not only do they take away from the home, but it's really disturbing when a buyer is excited to 'know' the sellers. And, the buyers do look at them.home

9. Bills and personal papers. I understand that you cannot remove these document from the home all together, but please take the time to organize them, box them up and put them out of sight. If you have bills laying out on the counter or kitchen table it's like an invitation for the buyers to 'peek' at them. Believe me - I discourage it - but it still happens. And as a seller you just don't want to leave the temptation behind.

8. Money. I would love to say that every buyer (and Realtor) going through every home is honest, but I really don't want to test those waters. If you have cash, cash boxes or coin jars sitting out in the open... put them away. It's just better for everyone if it's out of sight. As Realtors we do what we can to protect your home, but your help makes a difference!

7. Valuables. Jewelry, watches, valuable antiques.... anything that might be worth a bit of money that you wouldn't want to lose. Out of sight, out of mind. If buyers don't know they are there they won't think about it. I can't tell you how many homes I've been in where the jewelry is left on the dresser.... somehow it's uncomfortable. At least put it away.

6. Guns and ammo. I don't care if they are in a case or out laying around or under a bed. It's better if you just plain old remove them from the home prior to listing. For some reason they make buyers (in my experience) feel really insecure.

5. Shoes! If you have a pile of shoes at the door... ask yourself why. A pile of shoes gives a buyer two impressions. The first? That there isn't enough storage in your home. 2. That there are too many people living in the home. So, in order to avoid wondering on the part of the buyer... just put them away.

4. Medicine. Take it out. Don't store it on the counter. Don't store it in the cabinet. Don't store it in the bathroom. Remove it. There have been many complaints over the years of potential buyers 'stealing' the medicine out of the cabinets. I have never had it happen on my time clock, but to avoid any trouble it's best to simply remove it.

3. All things on your kitchen counter. Everything? Really? Yup. The cleaner you can leave the counter, the more buyers dream of being in there. Have you ever been in a cluttered kitchen? Does it feel inviting? How about a cleaned up kitchen? Does it make you wanna spend time there? Also, if you store things on the counter it gives the appearance that you do not have enough storage space.

2. No more junk drawers. Seriously. Clean 'em out. There is nothing more tacky than a potential buyer opening the cupboards and drawers and having things sticking out everywhere. Box up all the notes, pens, tacks, and odds and ends and put them away. Chances are you don't dig in the drawer often anyways.

1. Nothing but magnets.... and maybe not even that. Take a photo of your fridge, take everything off, wash the front (and side), and take another photo. It is really refreshing to walk into a home that has a clean fridge. The kids pictures are beautiful (believe me... my fridge is covered in them) but buyer's can't imagine their own children's drawing on there if it is covered with yours. And, the magnets... If they aren't decorative (and even then) they are generally more of a distraction to the room than a help. Consider it.

There are many more ways to declutter a home for sale... but these are some important things to consider. For more information on selling your home in Minnesota... give me a call.

Hasford Homes Info


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Elite Home Sales Team
Elite Home Sales Team OC - Corona del Mar, CA
A Tenacious and Skilled Real Estate Team

Now that is a good list and it is important information.

Feb 25, 2012 02:24 PM #1
Dale Taylor
Re/Max 10 New Lenox Illinois - Frankfort, IL
Realtor = Chicago Illinois Homes Townhomes Condos

Our listing contracts have a provision in it protecting us from loss of items in the homes we list.  I'd rather not have them to go through that experience, and I certainly do not want to get that kind of call from them.  Your comments are so appreciated.

Feb 25, 2012 02:51 PM #2
Suzy Ribeiro
Douglas Elliman Real Estate - Quogue & Westhampton Beach - Quogue, NY
Douglas Elliman Real Estate Hamptons & North Fork

Great handy list of item to be removed before listing ! I just had a seller remove an antique infantry musket from the mantel over a fireplace... out it went before the house was put on the market !

Feb 25, 2012 02:52 PM #3
Ronald DiLalla
Century 21 Discovery DRE 01813824 - Anaheim, CA
No. Orange Cty Real Estate

Sometimes it is very difficult to    get our clients to listen and  react to our suggestions.Nice list Dale...thanks for sharing it with us.

Feb 25, 2012 03:43 PM #4
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • Green • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

less cluter ~ better impression! 

less personal ~ better! You want buyes look at house,not at pictures and your shoes!

I'd add :  .......odor  ~ in many blogs and suggestions it is not mentioned, but i'd strongly suggest to keep windows opened ,  at least. Smell of mold, pets, just dusty, medicine ~ makes buyers get out off the property like bullets. It is an easy fix( carpet clean, candles, etc. :)

Feb 25, 2012 03:44 PM #5
Erv Fleishman
Realty Associates - Boca Raton, FL
Luxury Prop Specialist Realty Associates

We had a listing of a Hall of Fame athlete who had a Hall of Fame wall. 

He was sure that clients would want to see the wall and that it would help sell the home. 

He was right. They wanted to see the wall. 

The home sold quickly. 

Why? It was priced to sell.

Feb 25, 2012 04:31 PM #6
Captain Wayne - Rowlett Real Estate School
REcampus Fully Accredited Florida ONLINE & Classroom Training in Destin, Pensacola Florida - Panama City Beach, FL
Rowlett Real Estate School / Owner and Instructor

You can't be too cautious when people you don't know are coming into your home.  Thanks for the information!

Feb 25, 2012 07:56 PM #7
Dale Taylor
Re/Max 10 New Lenox Illinois - Frankfort, IL
Realtor = Chicago Illinois Homes Townhomes Condos

What I love about blogging is the opportunity to get the right communication out into social media airwaves so hopefully when our Buyers do come to us, they come with good habits and are more cooperative.

Feb 28, 2012 02:48 PM #8
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Realtor = Chicago Illinois Homes Townhomes Condos
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