In 2008 we sold our house in 4 days, but we were kid-less at the time. it seemed so easy! A couple showings and we had an offer.
This time around with a 2 and 4 year old I was nervous on how I would stay sane with the house on the market.
So I give you how we had an accepted offer on our house in 5 days!!!
1. Plan Ahead
We knew that we wanted to put our house on the market by Mid-March. So we started preparing right around the beginning of the year.
2. Declutter Declutter Declutter
We took so much of our stuff to our in-laws basement!! Loads and loads of toys. Extra summer clothes, extra furniture, extra kitchen items. Any and everything that we did not use often and were adding to the cluttered look of the house. (Also this goes with out saying this is an EXCELLENT time to purge your stuff and donate things you never use!! We made several trips to Goodwill!! You are moving, might as well start out with less stuff!!!)
|No hiding the extra stuff in the closet!|
I know they always say you have to take down all of your personal pictures. I did not do this. I did take down the massive canvas gallery wall I had of my kids, but I did not take down every single picture of our family. See below! Three pictures of my kids!
Dr. Seuss painted bathroom and my kids striped bedroom walls. And out of all of the showings we had not one person said anything negative about these rooms!! (Oddly one realtor told us to paint it, we didn't paint it nor did we use him as our realtor)
Save yourself some stress and hire someone to clean it! We had 4 awesome people come in and deep clean the place from top to bottom and it took them 3 hours. If I had done it myself it would have taken me 2 additional weeks before we were able to place it on the market. They even cleaned the unfinished part of the basement that had cob webs and spiders all over!!! Seriously save yourself the stress, you will have to keep things clean once on the market, you don't need the extra stress now!
5. Stage it!
Because with kids you always have a bowl of green apples on your counter and flowers and everything looks picture perfect! These apples slowly got eaten by the kids as the showings went on!
Then we listed it!!!
I will admit. I was highly stressed the 5 days the house was listed. I did not need to be as stressed as I was! We sat down and talked to both of our kids and explained we needed to keep the house clean. They oddly actually listened! Now I know if it had been longer than 5 days, it might have been a different story but we were pretty easily able to keep it clean and perfect for 5 days.
We did keep the kids away at the park and grandparents when we could, which helped!!
Before a showing I would quickly clean the floors and pick up any extra toys that were laying around. When purging before listing, I made a point to keep a few empty bins so I could "hide" stuff in it quickly if needed!!
Once the house was clean, I told my husband and 5 year old son that 2 of the 4 toilets we had were off limits! I made sure no one went into the craft room. And we just kept everything up. We filled and unloaded the dishwasher all the time, made beds in the morning (which was easy because we always do that every day anyways.....) and put things back. (seriously with a lot of your extra crap out of the house its so much easier to stay organized - which is a whole separate post that we have WAY WAY too much crap!!!)
Also a hint, if your kids are little enough like mine are, and are still in car seats, buckle them safely in the car and then do one last look around without their help!
My biggest tip on how to sell your house is go and have dinner at Old Chicago. We seriously got an offer on the showing we had while my husband and I were at dinner at Old Chicago. We told friends our secret, they tried it and also had an offer that day. This is obviously very scientific if it worked 3 times!!
Good luck selling your house with kids! It's a lot of work and it will stress you out, but the end result is worth it!!! We sold our house so fast, we are now living with my parents for the summer while our house is built!!!!
And let me tell you packing and actually moving is a whole separate fun!!!