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The Declutter Challenge: These 5 Storage Solutions Can Make It Easier to Sell Your Home

Patty Knaggs

Making dreams come true is what I do.  My real estate expertise is based on 16 years as a realtor and 18 years as an investor/property manager...

Making dreams come true is what I do.  My real estate expertise is based on 16 years as a realtor and 18 years as an investor/property manager...

Oct 7 5 minutes read

You're ready to put your North Shore home on the market. That's great! Now, you need to take a few steps to help ensure that you get the highest price possible. Ideally, you can make your house look inviting without leaving many personal items around. You want to make it as easy as possible for potential buyers to imagine themselves living in the rooms. The items you cherish might look like little more than clutter to them. The following declutter challenge will help prepare your home for visitors.

Tackle High-Traffic Areas First

Start decluttering your house by tackling high-traffic areas first. Clear out your hallways, living room, stairs, and kitchen. At this early stage of the process, you might need to store items in a closet, attic, or basement. That's not ideal, but you need to prioritize the more important areas until you can get to places that most people expect to look a little cluttered.

Depersonalize Your Rooms as Much as Possible

You don't want your personal life to influence a potential buyer's decision. Obviously, you need to live in your home until you close a deal. That doesn't mean you should leave a lot of personal items sitting around where visitors can see them. Put family photos, books, and personalized decorations in boxes (cardboard works fine, but plastic storage containers are even better).

Once you remove personal items, you will probably have a lot of empty shelves and wall space. Fill those empty spaces with generic décor. You don't have to spend much money or choose anything fancy. Focus on simple decorations that act as placeholders for what the new owners put in the house.

Take Advantage of Furniture With Built-In Storage

Furniture with built-in storage will serve you well no matter where you go. Once you move into your next house, you will keep accumulating memories and memorabilia. Eventually, your new home will feel cluttered, just like the old one. The right furniture can slow—or even prevent—that process from taking over your rooms.

Some options to look for include:

  • Tiered coffee tables
  • Couches that open to reveal storage space
  • Benches with built-in drawers
  • Coffee tables with drawers
  • Beds with drawer systems underneath

If you don't have much money to spend, you can hide your clutter by placing it under a table and draping an attractive skirt over the table. Make sure the fabric touches the floor to keep all of your items out of sight.

Make Some Hard Decisions

At this point, you probably have boxes and piles of things… and you don't really know what to do with them. It's time to make some hard decisions. You will never get rid of your children's baby photos. Pictures from that disastrous day trip when you got stuck in Boston traffic for hours? Maybe it's time to get rid of those–or at least digitize them.

Getting rid of heirlooms and personal items can feel like a significant loss to some people. If you expect strong emotional reactions from a member of your household, try following Marie Kondo's method. It still requires a lot of willpower, but it will help guide your decisions.

Rent a Storage Space to Complete Your Declutter Challenge

Even after going through every step above, you might not have enough storage space to put away all of your personal items. In fact, you might want to sell your home so you can move into a place that offers more storage space.

In the meantime, you can complete the declutter challenge by renting a self-storage space. Look for a storage center with:

  • Affordable prices
  • Units appropriately sized for your needs
  • Drive-up units
  • Closed-circuit TV monitors
  • Exterior lighting that deters thieves
  • Gated entrances

Most importantly, ensure that the self-storage service you choose has strong security that protects your cherished items.

Talk to a Professional Agent Who Understands North Shore Real Estate

Hiring the right real estate agent is all about finding a professional you respect and trust who will help you achieve your goals. It's also critical they have a proven track record and are community experts.

Let's Talk
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