When you look at your home do you see piles of clothes on the floor, stacks of mail on the counter, and toys strewn all over the floor?
Messes make stresses.
It happens to all of us, whether you are a parent, have a home office, or have just a busy lifestyle. The truth is stuff we collect many things in life.
If your house is getting out of control, then it’s time to de-clutter.
Here are some tips to help you tackle the clutter and reclaim your space.
Start small with one room or even one space. This could be as big as the entire back room or as small as organizing your makeup drawer.
With each item ask yourself: “Keep, Toss, Store, Donate, Sell.” And make a separate pile for each.
- Keep Items: Ask yourself if you really need it; do you use it on a regular basis? Does it have emotional value? Have you used it in the past year?
You might be surprised how much you have that you don’t truly need. Sort these items into like piles such as clothes, shoes, belts etc. Find a way to containerize them; you can use simple plastic or cardboard boxes.
Plus if you shop online, stores like Amazon.com and The Container Store offer every kind of organizer, shelf, or container you can imagine. Clearly label all containers and find an accessible spot for them.
- Toss Items. Get a big garbage bag and be honest about what you need. Get rid of anything old, broken, empty, or expired.
If you are de-cluttering a major space you can call to get a waste removal service to haul it away. Many local cities will take larger pieces in the garbage on certain days. Check your city website to find out the rules for your site.
- Store Items. There are items you probably need, but don’t use frequently. These are items you can store. This can be everything from summer clothes to holiday decorations to fine china.
Containerize it and find a spot that is out of the way to store them. There may be a space in a closet, the back of a cabinet or under the bed that is out of the way, but easily accessible.
- File any papers. Creating a filing system with tabs can make it easy to find items quickly. This is a great way to organize bills, documents, coupons, restaurant menus, related project items and more.
- Donate Items. Always donate items when you can. You can drop items off at Good Will, Salvation Army and other thrift shops. Other items can be listed at Craigslist or Freecycle.com.
Plus, you can always post a picture of the item on Facebook and let friends know it’s FREE to anyone who needs it.
- Sell Items. Why not turn your unused items into cash? It’s so easy to make a little extra money selling your items such as by holding a garage sale. Another idea is to sell it online at Craigslist or Ebay.
Plus, many neighbourhoods are now offering Virtual Garage sale groups on Facebook. Just list the item and everyone in the group will hear about your offerings.
Here’s Further Organizing Tips:
Call a professional. If your home is out of control and you want to organize your space, an interior designer or organizer is skilled at helping to determine your needs and creating systems to store your items neatly.
They can help you create your dream closet, tackle the toy room, design your dream home office and more. The result is a beautiful, organized home that you can sit back and relax in.
Are you looking for affordable ways to spruce up your home to sell fast?
The right home staging can make your home ‘pop’ with potential buyers and bring top offers.
Here are some small things that will make a big difference when staging your home.
FIRST IMPRESSIONS – Curb Appeal
- Light the way to fast sales! If your porch light looks dated, replace it. Be sure that the bulbs are replaced; often this is the first thing buyers see when they pull up the driveway of your home.
- Crank up the curb appeal. Take a look at your front door, a new layer of paint can give it wow appeal. Trim the bushes; brighten up your landscaping bricks with a power washer; add fresh pots with flowers on the doorstep; and finally crown with an eye-catching welcome mat.
BIGGER OFFERS ARE AN INSIDE JOB
- Neutralize. The first impulse when buying a home is to personalize a space. You want to do the opposite to sell your home; look around and try to neutralize the space. Remove family photos; take the kid’s pictures off of the refrigerator; paint over those marks on the door showing how tall your kids are. You want the buyer to envision that it’s move-in ready and they fit right in.
- Clean up the clutter. Buyers want a feeling of space. Visually do an inspection of your home. Clear off countertops; tidy up the inside of cabinets; clean out the closets; put extra items in storage, donate, sell or toss them.
- Pour on the elbow grease. Now’s the time to really make your home shine. Scrub baseboards; polish stainless steel; clean, scrub, shine, and make everything sparkle like new.
- Cash in by dressing up cabinetry. A budget-friendly way to instantly brighten up your kitchen is to paint wood cabinets and add knobs and handles. A new coat of paint can make worn, tired kitchen cabinets look new again.
- Beautify your bathroom. If your tub or toilet is dingy looking, you’ll turn off buyers fast. An inexpensive way to fix this is with an acrylic tub surround and liner. Clean the grout between tiles and remove debris in drains. This will give a fresh, clean look to the bathroom. Also, if you have bathroom carpet, remove it and replace with new vinyl or ceramic tiles.
- Light it up. Set the mood with lighting. Make sure there is enough light flowing through the home. This doesn’t mean turning on every light in the home. Instead use floor and table lamps and open curtains to create a soft, warm ambiance.
- Odors STINK when it comes to selling your home. The biggest culprits include stale air, food, pets, mildew, and smoking. Open windows to air out your home and use air filters to break up and neutralize odors in the air. Products like Febreeze can freshen up curtains or furniture. Then remember to light a softly scented candle on the day of showing. Be cautious about this though, sometimes strong scents can be as big a turn off as bad odors; you might want to consider using an “air sponge” which will neutralize the offensive odor.
- Add eye candy. When your home is ready, adding little touches like bowls of fresh fruit, a vase of flowers or plants can add warmth and colour to any room.
Finally, consulting with a home stager can provide a wealth of ideas. A home stager can recommend more effective furniture arrangements, paint colours, and tips/tricks to make your home visually appealing.
Follow these tips and you’ll be on your way to selling your home fast!
The kitchen truly is the heart of the home. That’s why when it’s time to sell your house, staging your kitchen properly can make a positive impression on potential buyers.
The goal is to make your kitchen look spacious, clean, and inviting.
Here are some tips for staging your kitchen to look its best:
Step 1: DECLUTTER
Decluttering your kitchen will help buyers to see your kitchen as spacious. They want to make sure there is enough room in cabinets and countertops.
Here are key places to declutter:
- Pantry. Place pantry and food items in attractive bins. By grouping loose items together you give the impression that there is plenty of space.
- Countertops. Remove all but 1 or 2 small appliances such as mixers and coffee makers from counter tops and relocate them to your pantry or inside the cabinets. Be sure to put away knife blocks. Not only are they clunky, but some cultures look at knives as unlucky.
- Drawers and cabinets. Place seasonal or rarely used dishes, utensils, and pans away in storage. Organize and clean your cabinets. You don’t want them to look overstuffed and untidy.
- Bulk heads and space above cabinets. Don’t make people think about the dust that could collect up there. You want the space to feel airy, open and clean.
- Dishes. Never leave dirty dishes in the sink. Put away clean dishes. Remove the dish drying rack from the counter. Tuck all dish soap and sponges away from sight.
- Fridge. Take all the magnets, calendars, and other items off the fridge. Clean the front and the inside of the fridge. Consider throwing away old, unneeded food items so the fridge looks spacious.
Step 2: CLEAN
Buyers love a sparkling clean kitchen that smells fresh. Scrub, polish, and dust everything from top to bottom.
Here are some reminders for things to clean:
- Appliances. Potential buyers will open your appliances, especially if they are being sold with the house. Having an immaculately clean fridge and range makes buyers feel like you took time to clean and maintain the kitchen. Pull off the stove knobs and polish them too.
- Scent. Be sure the kitchen smells tidy and fresh. An air purifier can help remove unwanted stale odors and bacteria from the air leaving the kitchen smelling clean.
- Sinks. Make that stainless steel sink & faucet shine like new. Norwex is an awesome environmentally friendly cleaning paste that will clean absolutely anything like new.
- Sink cabinet. Nearly every buyer will peak under the sink to make sure it’s clean and neat. Keep this area looking spacious and uncluttered. Remove all items except for a few essential things. Put in new cabinet liners.
- Extras. Scrub baseboards, cabinet faces, inside cabinets, and on top of them too. Sweep and wipe down the corners.
Step 3: DECORATE
The trick with decorating a kitchen is to help them see the space as a light, bright, warm and inviting, without feeling cluttered.
Here are some tips to showcase your space as stylish and modern:
- Cabinet knobs. If the kitchen is dated and you don’t have time for a makeover, try changing the old brass knobs for some nice brushed chrome pulls or new knobs.
- Lighting. Change out the dated lighting fixtures for some new track lighting. Rona, Lowes, and Home Depot have great pricing for easy change outs.
- Backsplash. Adding a new back splash can instantly update a kitchen and give you a huge return on investment.
- Decorative accents. Don’t overdo the “Staging” in a kitchen, a few well-placed accents with pops of colour is all you need. For example an accent rug, artwork, or a utensil holder can add splashes of colour. Adding a bowl of fruit, flowers, plant, or wine on counter can make the space feel warm and inviting. Don’t forget to change the flowers regularly so they look fresh.
- Air fresheners. Overwhelming scents can be a turn off for buyers. If you use an air freshener, I recommend a clean, neutral scent.
- Curtains. If you have heavy curtains, consider replacing with a window accent that lets in the light.
- Paint. Give your kitchen a fresh coat of neutral paint. This brightens the kitchen, updates it, and makes it look more attractive.
Staging your kitchen is easy! It’s as simple as declutter, clean, and decorate. Follow these kitchen staging tips and tricks and you’ll be on your way to getting top dollar for your home sale!
If you’re too overwhelmed and busy to stage your kitchen for ideal showings and live in the Calgary Alberta area, feel free to give us a call.