Hey Cora: I want to put my home up for sale, but I have 4 kids and 2 dogs and sooooo much stuff! This why I need a bigger house! Do I need to move out of my house before I can put it up for sale? Signed Already Overwhelmed!
Dear Overwhelmed, no you don’t have to move out of your house! That would not be practical at all. First of all, get some boxes; I found that Walmart, Fred Meyers, and Carrs has nice boxes if you go in the morning before they crush them. Start collecting boxes. You will need packing tape and a tape dispenser – a good one – not one of those “hokey plastic” ones. You will also need a camera, the one on your cell phone will be just fine, and a large black felt tip.
Now start small. Book shelves: Take the extra things on the bookcases and put them into a box leave only a few things on the shelves. Use your phone and take a picture of the inside of the box before you tape it closed. Then close it up and write with your felt tip marker BOX ONE – take a picture of Box One. Now you can remind yourself what is in that box if you need something. Stack the boxes in the back of the garage or use GO PODS! Go Pods will deliver a pod or (small container) to your house and can load your boxes in – once it’s full, they will pick up the pod and store it for you! Schnikies! That’s easy! Okay so remember, we are starting small.
So let each child, (yes all four if they are of an age where they can handle this) have four boxes. Box A is for things they want to keep and pack up before the move, Box B is for things they want to give away to the thrift store or garage sale, box C is for broken toys and things they want to throw away, box D (make this a small box) is for things that they just cannot part with and they want to keep with them. Convince them that they only need a few things! Give them a few days to get that all separated out. Then you have to go in and do it right! It’s true, you will have to help them.
Next, let’s tackle the kitchen: Countertops need to be cleaned off. This is really important. If you have stuff all over your countertops, it will make your house look like it doesn’t have enough space. Well, and in your case it doesn’t! So, again, pack up what you can get by without for a time. Waffle maker, in the box and stack it in the container. Toaster, down below in a lower cabinet. Prescriptions, hidden from view, if they are ones you rarely use, pack um up and put them in your closet on a shelf.
Oh, that brings us to closets! Pack up all those winter clothes! Put them in the pod, Label them correctly! Christmas Dishes – POD, Snorkle and Dive Gear – POD, Year Books – POD, Aunt Suzie’s huge antique make-up table – POD, Grandma Leatherbottom’s chafing dishes – In the POD! (if you don’t know what a chafing dish is – GOOGLE it) Prom dresses – POD, Old Army Uniforms – need I say it – POD!
Now, let’s talk about – you know – controversial materials. Here is a list of a few things that some people have a problem with and it can actually prevent you from getting an offer on your house.
1) Animal mounts
2) Pornographic materials, movies or artwork
3) Political memorabilia, posters or cartoons
All these things may be okay for you, but that can really turn off a potential buyer – so POD IT!
For the next few months, you are going to live minimally! It won’t be hard, maybe inconvenient from time to time, like the times you want to pour over your political humor while eating waffles! Or brush your wolverine rug in your prom dress! But all in all, you will be happy you did it because so much of your packing will already be done.
Now, once all that is done, call your Realtor, ask them to come over and tell you what else needs to go if anything! They will walk thru the house with you and give you some ideas on what should go and what should stay to make the house look warm inviting and lived in!
Oh, don’t forget the yard! Sometimes that old rusty swing set needs to just have a new life with new kids! Craigs List! And that old snow machine that your son was going to rebuild – Cragis List!
Craigs List and Alaska’s List will be your new best friend. You will probably make enough money to pay for the pod.
Now, what about help. There are many ways to get people to help you. Mostly with MONEY! I have used Superman Moving to help people, they got all the heavy stuff out of the house and packed boxes too! Valley Moving and Storage will help and there are others around town too. This is great for large pieces of furniture and just helping you get organized! Just get a rate from them and let them know they don’t need a truck because it’s just going into the POD!
So, you should be ready! On the market and ready to sell! But don’t forget, one more thing…….we need to find you a new house, that’s the fun part!