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How to De-personalize a home to get ready to sell

How to De-personalize a home to get ready to sell

How to De-personalize a home: Listing tips

Author: Jeannene Matthews

When you list a house for sale, it’s important that potential buyers can see themselves (and their things) in your house.  You need to invite their imagination to wander!
 Removing some of your ‘youness’ from your house is inherently difficult - you still live there, after all! For some (including me, when I sold my house in 2020 to move to Raleigh, NC) it can even feel a little sad.  Lots of families have lived in their houses for quite some time before they decide to sell.

We call this process de-personalizing.  Here are the 4 things you can do to improve your home for showings.

      1.Touch up and cover up!

If you’re going to do only one thing on this list, this is the one I recommend.  You need to touch up existing paint and cover up those exciting colors.

Touching up is easy, although not very exciting.  In particular, look over your doors, door and window frames, chair railing and hallways.  A few touch ups in utility areas like the laundry room make a difference too!
 Covering up is pretty self-explanatory. While I love my red kitchen, it is definitely an adventurous color to have in the house. Priming bold colors and covering up with a more neutral gray, cream or white invites a buyer’s eye to put their own color scheme in the space.   If you’re unsure of what color to go with on your cover-up, you might consider consulting a home stager or professional painter.

        2.Clear the surfaces.

This is a really good way to take the mystery out of the word ‘declutter’.  It’s really easy - clear off dressers, coffee tables, end tables, and bathroom counters entirely.  Pack up 50% of the books you have on bookshelves and organize the remaining ones.   Put away any small appliances that you aren’t going to use in the kitchen. Organize desks by putting away any papers or work items.  Hide your cords as best you can - I like to twist tie mine together so they at least look a little orderly.

      3.Clear the walls.

This one is pretty fast!I like to think of this one as getting a jump start on packing.  One thing I highly encourage people to remove from the walls are family portraits and initials or name monograms.  After that, religious icons are a good bet for things to put away for showing. Things that are great to keep on the walls (or even hang up for staging) include: mirrors, abstract art pieces, and clocks. 

     4.Get on-trend!

Congratulations, you made it this far!  After you’ve managed your own touches on the house, you can go another step further and add a few stylish details to your house.  My go-tos are artificial plants and decorative stoneware.  Pinterest is a great resource here! Search something like ‘2021 home trends’ and your room that you’re working on.   You can also get input from a home stager or an interior designer on this part!

Good luck and happy decluttering!

To contact the author:

Jeannene Matthews

Owner, JR Photography


@jrphotographync on Instagram and Facebook


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