How to Keep Your House Show-Ready When You Have Messy Kids and No Time
Guest post by Sarah Velasquez
Photo Credit: Kha Ruxury via Pexels
Are you selling your home and feeling overwhelmed by all the work involved in keeping it clean and staged for showings? Maintaining a show-ready home isn’t easy for anyone, and it’s especially difficult for families with young kids and working parents. No matter how busy your schedule or how good your kids are at undoing your hard work, a spotless, staged home is critical for your home sale. That’s why White Loft offers home-selling advice that will help you meet buyers’ expectations without sending your own stress levels sky-high.
Decluttering and Redecorating Children’s Spaces
Clean, neutral spaces let buyers imagine their own furniture and family living in your house. But if children’s bedrooms and playrooms are decorated with bright colors and cartoon characters, buyers will have trouble looking past the décor to see the great space underneath. Removing items from a child’s bedroom can be difficult for them. If you are moving while your house is still on the market, consider leaving a few key items or renting furniture for staging while moving the key items to your child’s new room. Or if you need a temporary home while selling, you can rent a two bedroom home in the Austin area starting at around $2,700. Then your child can have their usual setup and you won’t have to worry about surprise showings.
It’s important to redecorate children’s rooms so buyers without young kids can picture the space as a home office, guest room, or something else. Repaint to a neutral color, replace busy bedding with solid colors, and swap posters and wall decals with simple, framed prints.
Kids’ bedrooms tend to be smaller, but you can maximize space by using hidden storage for toys, such as under-bed drawers or a cubby system in the closet. Simple storage also makes it easier for kids to keep their rooms clean while your house is on the market. Rather than trying to cram every toy into limited space, carefully approach organizing their space with a purpose, and downsize toy collections, and donate or throw away toys that are broken, missing pieces, or no longer loved.
Keeping Up with Cleaning
Hiring a cleaning service is by far the best way to keep your house clean while it’s on the market. A weekly or bi-weekly cleaning service will handle all the sweeping, mopping, dusting, and sanitizing, so all you have to worry about is tidying up before showings. It’s hard to beat that convenience for working parents who don’t have hours to spend on daily housekeeping.
Parents who can’t afford professional help need to follow a strict cleaning schedule. You may have an hour or less to prepare your house for a showing, so letting dirty dishes and clutter pile up isn’t an option. Create a checklist for daily and weekly chores, and assign age-appropriate tasks to each family member so one person isn’t responsible for all the upkeep. Include a list of everything you need to do before leaving the house for a showing, like taking out the trash and moving cars out of the driveway.
Don’t forget about helpful gadgets and upgrades, too; many parents love a robot vac, since it helps stay on top of crumbs and pet hair. Similarly, if you’re constantly fighting cooking odors, a well-chosen range hood can help improve the air quality and presentation of your home when house hunters visit. Think outside the box when looking for home staging solutions.
What to Do with Kids During Showings and Open Houses
Showings and open houses can be a major disruption to kids’ schedules, not to mention the challenge of getting children dressed and out of the house on short notice. Consider asking another neighborhood parent to babysit during showings. Some days may have several showings, and you’ll need to keep kids out of the house all day. Dropping the kids off somewhere familiar is easier than driving around looking for activities to keep everyone entertained.
If there’s no babysitter available, grab a few portable toys and snacks, and head to the library, park, movie theater, or another kid-friendly place for a few hours. Try to make it a positive experience for your kids. If they know showings mean running errands and being bored, they’re more likely to put up a fight when you’re rushing to leave home!
Finally, be sensitive to your children’s needs while selling your home. It’s easy to get overwhelmed when kids get in the way and create messes, but it’s important to remember that moving is a tough time for children too. Ensuring your kids’ needs are met during this transitional time leads to greater cooperation from everyone, and that means less stress for you!
White Loft provides beautiful handmade products for your nursery and developing child. Visit our online store to see our products and to learn about our small business.
Image via Unsplash