5 Tips for Decluttering Your Home Before Selling

Thinking about selling your home in the next 7 months?  Caroline Carter, author of “Smart Moves:  How to Save Time and Money While Transitioning Your Home and Life,” is a home transition expert that feels that you ideally need about seven months to get your house ready to sell.  Of course I’ve had sellers that get their home ready in a few weeks, but in my opinion, I agree that for some homeowners, 7 months is not to0 early to start preparing yourself.  I do find that in most cases it is best if homeowners start preparing at least 3 months prior to listing their home on the MLS for sale. It really depends on how much work needs to be done on the property to get it ready for the market.

Carter’s book includes some helpful tips to help you tackle getting your home ready.  Of course if you have an awesome Realtor, she can help you get a game plan together and make the process much easier!  A Realtor has resources that can save you time and frustration.

1.  Pace yourself.

Put a plan together and realistically set up a timeline.  You will most likely still have your normal day to day life to contend with so you will need to keep that in mind.  I find it is easier for my clients to schedule times to work on the house and add them to a calendar to ensure they are completed.  Once you set a target date for your home to be on the MLS, you can work backward from there.

2.  Get organized.

Moving is a great time to organize your belongings and hopefully when you are done you will have less to move!  Start with your paperwork, sort and file your important papers and shred the rest.  Make sure you keep a list of important numbers and accounts handy.  And remember that you will need financial paperwork for your mortgage process.  You can scan these important items for a paper free option.  Make sure to use a cloud based place to store your files, or back them up on a thumb file or external drive.

Next, go room by room and organize your belongings.  Determine what you are going to keep, sell, give away or toss.  You can even start boxing up items that you will be keeping but won’t be using to store inside a closet.

3.  Timing is everything.

Make sure you give yourself enough time to complete the organizing tasks so you can get your house on the market on your desired target date.  You will also need to factor in any time you will need to complete any repairs on the property.  Don’t underestimate how much time it is going to take you.  By giving yourself enough time, you will make the process less stressful.

4.  Take control of your stuff.

The average house has about 300,00 items!  Be objective when you go through your house and take control of what you keep and what you donate or toss.  Don’t lose sight of your goal to reduce the items that you will need to move.  Carter uses blue painter’s tape and a black market to mark each item as pack, sell, dump and donate.

5.  Out with the old.

Once you complete the sorting process, you can find numerous companies to come haul any unwanted items away.  You can also contact several organizations to donate items to and they will come pick it up.  Check out Goodwill, Salvation Army, and St Vincent de Paul to see if they will come and pick up your items for free.  For more information visit www.donationtown.org.  “Junk” removers can pick up any items that aren’t eligible for donation.


Need help planning the sell of your home? I have a proven process to help you experience success with less stress. Together we can get your home ready for the market, priced right and in front of the most potential buyers as possible.  I use professional staging and photography to help attract buyers with no extra charge to you.

Contact me today for a free consultation to help you get a game plan together.  Call or text Cinda Rose at  623-252=9350.  Or fill out the form below.

Article originally appeared in the Seattle Times.

Posted on August 5, 2019 at 4:26 pm
Cinda Rose | Category: Selling Your Home

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