Tips For Staging A Home When You Have Children

Dated: 05/09/2018

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Tips for Staging a Home When You Have Children

Staging a home for sale might seem difficult if you have children. The smaller your kids are, the more likely they are to make those messes we love until it’s time to clean them up. Toys, arts and crafts, wear and tear, and even a bit of dirt might find their way all over the home of anyone with children as they explore and grow.

What can parents do to stage their home for sale and keep it ready for show? The good news is that there are plenty of hacks to make this an easy proposition. Read on for some techniques that can keep your home tempting and lure potential buyers into the sale!

Consolidate Everything

It seems like a strange idea to pack for moving before you’ve even shown your home, but there are a lot of practical reasons for it, especially with children. The house should look like a home, but not be personalized, so potential buyers to imagine their own plans for it. Packing the majority of your belongings clears a lot of space. However, you don’t want to pack too much – leave a piece of furniture in every room to give perspective to the space.

If your kids have separate bedrooms, it is a good idea to have them share a room while you are showing the house, so that extra rooms can be displayed with versatility. A good rule of thumb is to keep two weeks’ worth of clothing and personal items handy, and remove everything else you can.

Tone It Down

Kids’ bedrooms and playrooms are often painted and decorated brightly or with murals and personal decor such as ceiling fans, light switch plates, or posters. This can be off-putting for potential buyers, however, who will look at rooms like this as extra projects. It is a good idea to repaint rooms like these in neutral colors and make them a little more generic.

Posters, pictures, and personal decor should all be removed, including things like ceiling lamps and doorknobs. Gaming consoles and extra televisions should also be removed. Keep furnishings minimal: enough to show off the size of the room, but not so much that the buyer can’t envision their own use for the room.

Living in a Staged Home

While waiting to sell, it is often the case that the seller remains living in the home. With kids, this can seem daunting, but there are all sorts of ways to keep toys and activities from being a part of the show. During a showing, the kids’ toys should not be visible, so having a plastic container to throw everything into is a good idea. Arts and crafts items such as crayons, glitter and glue should be packed before showing, as these could result in extra cleaning. The “two week” rule puts enough clothes in closets to allow potential buyers to imagine their own clothes there, without overfilling and giving the impression of little space. This applies to everything you need to live in the house while showing it: two weeks of books, games, movies, or other hobbies, and things that are quickly and easily stored.

Cooking in a Staged Home

The “two week” rule even applies to cooking. You want your pantries and refrigerator (if included) looking nice, so keeping about two weeks’ worth of food is the best policy. Even if you are bringing your stove to your new home, you still want that to be clean, too. A good way to both keep your stove clean and keep to the two-week rule with your food stores is to use your oven for your cooking while you are staging your home. Boxed dinners and casseroles can stretch for more than one meal, too, by storing them in little to-go boxes for work, school, or on the go.

Be Ready to Show

When you are showing your home, you have to be ready to leave whenever there is a showing scheduled.  For parents, this can simply be a matter of having a bag packed for each family member and a list of fun activities for both pleasant and dismal weather. Small games, toys, snacks and drinks are go-tos for everyone’s bags (last night’s casserole is great for this!). Toddlers and infants might need special attention in the form of diapers, bottles, and pacifiers. Even the adults should have a bag with a travel toiletry kit, any medications the family might need, and chargers for necessary devices, such as cell phones and tablets.

Just by using some easy short cuts, surviving your home showing with your kids can be a fun experience for everyone. Plenty of advanced preparation is required, but that is like setting up a safety net in case of any emergency, and it saves you—and your children—a lot of time and stress in the long run. Once your property sells and you all settle serenely into your new home, you’ll be glad you did.

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