How Sellers Can Declutter Their Winter Homes

How Sellers Can Declutter Their Winter Homes

 April 25, 2016

Winter brings with it many things, one of them is clutter. Clutter can take over a home and make it the last place buyers want to be. If your home sellers want to attract as many potential buyers as possible, they should get rid of winter clutter. They should not postpone decluttering as they’ll never get around to it. Here are some ways your sellers can declutter after winter.

Identify the Clutter

While some clutter is easily noticeable, some is not. For example, upper closet storage may hold a lot of junk. Kitchen drawers and cabinets are also culprits. They may contain unused items and empty containers. The first thing home sellers should do is identify clutter zones. Once they tackle these, they can move to the other areas which are easier to declutter.

Keep One Item, Toss Two

Sellers who want to make their homes clutter-free must get rid of more items than they keep. For each item they keep, they should get rid of 2. They should go through items they no longer use or have outgrown and see what to donate or throw away. Sellers should not be kind to clutter. Anything that clutters a room and doesn’t have a permanent place should be gotten rid of.

Homeowners should first focus on areas that attract clutter like countertops, shelves, and drawers. They should throw away items they don’t need and clean dirty ones. Afterwards, they should put everything back where it belongs.

Sort Before Storing

When sorting clothes, décor objects, and knickknacks, sellers should ask themselves these 3 questions:

  1. Do I love it?
  2. Do I use it frequently or will I use it soon (in less than 3 months)
  3. Does it add value to my life or my home?

If they answer “yes” to all three questions, the item is worth keeping. Homeowners may not be able to finish sorting household items in a day so they can sort things in one room before moving to the next. They can also enlist the help of their friends or relatives.

While shelving systems, storage bins, and other organizing products can contain clutter in a home, they can also increase it. When a home seller is set on decluttering his home, he must focus on getting rid of things and not on organizing them. Sellers with a lot of things can easily fill their storage bins and create more clutter zones. Tell your clients not to focus on putting things away more efficiently but on chucking out things they don’t need.

Get Rid of Dated Outdoor Furniture

While home buyers love outdoor seating (it makes them envision relaxing in the space), dated seating can make them run for the hills. Homeowners who can’t afford to buy new furniture can implement the following techniques:

  • Those with aluminum furniture should wash and wax it.
  • Wrought iron furniture should be repainted or stained. Homeowners should use rust-resistant primers first. If the rust has spread, they should sandblast and start afresh.
  • Wood furniture should be shielded with exterior varnish to prevent it from drying or cracking.
  • Bamboo furnishings crack when left outdoors for a long period of time. Homeowners should follow manufacturer instructions when repairing or cleaning bamboo furniture.
  • Vinyl furniture (faux wicker furniture) should be gently cleaned and repainted.
  • Plastic furniture easily gets scratched. Homeowners can paint over blemishes with special super-bond paints.

It is no secret that home buyers love to buy homes in spring. Since spring is around the corner, home sellers should declutter their homes in preparation for the home-buying season. Buyers have many choices in spring, the last thing you want is for them to overlook your listing simply because your sellers didn’t declutter.


Ronique Gibson

By Ronique Gibson

Ronique Gibson is an Associate Architect and a LEED Accredited Professional, who has been in the design industry for over 13 years. She started her design blog in 2009 and today it has become a premier destination for helping homeowners with everyday lifestyle challenges. Her readers check in daily for help with their homes, DIY project ideas, recipes, crafts, and inspiration to beautify and enjoy their homes.