Declutter your home before selling

Declutter Your Home Before Selling

An uncluttered home gives a spacious appearance

By Cina Coren
You’ve been thinking about it, worrying about it and losing sleep over it. But finally you have made the decision. You are going to sell your home. It doesn’t matter what the reason is, selling your home is a big step. Besides the emotional element of parting from a home perhaps filled with memories, the physical stamina required to get the house in order can be daunting. But if done correctly and enthusiastically, ridding yourself of the clutter in your home can actually be enjoyable. Decluttering in preparation for its sale calls for organization, foresight and patience.
You need discipline and a game plan
The best way to declutter your home and get organized is to be systematic. Do one room at a time so the whole process doesn’t become too overwhelming. Stay with each room until it is complete. But don’t spend days on end cleaning out closets. Devote several hours each day to the task and it will get done in a timely fashion.
Work systematically room by room
Begin by tackling storage areas. Once they are cleared out, you will have room to store those boxes you deem utterly necessary to keep. Be brutal on yourself. Is it necessary to keep it? Will it ever be used again?
If it hasn’t been used or displayed in several years, it probably has little meaning to you and should be sold or donated to a good cause. If you haven’t worn that dress for four seasons, out it goes. If an item is meaningful to you, store it now to display in your new home. If you have items of sentimental value only for yourself like old baby items, sports trophies and family photographs, set aside boxes where you can save¬†them.
Donate unwanted items to charity. Clothes, kitchen utensils, collections of any sort may have lost their value long ago but could be useful for needy adults and children. There is also a tax deduction for donations so get a bona fide receipt.
Prepare closet space
When cleaning out your closets, sort the clothes you wear the most from the ones you wish to keep for special occasions. Dresses and other attire that are out of season can be stored separately in a plastic vacuum-packed bag for future use. Those old-fashioned cedar wood blocks and cedar wood hangers are still useful today to prevent moths from eating away at your precious outfits.
Less is more when it comes to furniture
To make your rooms look larger, remove some of the furniture. Small tables that just collect dust or old cabinets with books that haven’t been read in years should be stored or given away. Organize bookshelves in an orderly fashion”small books on one shelf, larger ones on another. CDs and DVDs should be lined up accordingly. The less “stuff” in your home, the more spacious it will seem. Space is always at a premium so take advantage of what you have.
The kitchen is key
The kitchen is a story unto itself and it is important that you give it a clean, tidy appearance. Take everything out of the cupboards and throw away any outdated food items. Throw away storage containers that have no lids. We all have a varied collection of kitchen gadgets that just use up space in a drawer. Get rid of the ones you don’t use. Hide small appliances like toasters and mixers inside your cabinets.
An uncluttered countertop gives a feeling of space. Remove personal pictures and magnets from your refrigerator and wipe down the exterior till it shines. Rearrange the pantry by food types”canned goods on one shelf, pastas on another, and so on.
Less stuff, less hassle for you
Remember that the less stuff there is in your home when you start painting and staging it, the less hassle there will be and the cleaner and more spacious your home will appear.

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