What Do You Mean I Have a Pretend House? Home Staging Tips Minneapolis

Well….not really pretend but when you are putting your home on the market it needs to become a kind of pretend house for awhile.

What I mean by that is certain things that you live with every day need to go away when  your home is being shown to a perspective buyer.

It also means putting things out that you will only have out for your showings. One example is towels. There is nothing better than fresh towels that you have just purchased and that have never been washed. They are nice and fluffy.

 

These should become your ‘pretend’ towels that you never use while your home is for sale. You put them out only for the professional photography session and for showings. If you leave for work every morning the pretend towels get  hung up when you are done showering and getting ready so the bathrooms are ready for a showing.

All ‘real world’ things go away and the pretend world takes over. Is it a pain in the side? Yes. Is it a hassle? Yes. But the goal is to get your house in top selling condition, get an offer quickly and then go back to living normally. You don’t want this to drag on and on and buyers don’t want to see your ‘stuff’.

‘Stuff’ includes:

Tooth Brushes, Shampoo bottles, trash cans, bathroom scales, toilet bowl cleaners, phone charges, dirty laundry, mail, dish drain, piles of shoes, outdoor trash cans…..you get the picture. I will go back to my model  home analogy.

If you wouldn’t see it in a model home, a buyer shouldn’t see it in  your home. People love model  homes because they can immediately see themselves living there. They don’t feel like they are walking into ‘your’ house but ‘their’ house.

Sometimes it is tough to determine what those ‘real world’ items are as we are so used to looking at them every day.

You may want to consider having a trained professional Home Stager come in to let you know what you should and should not have seen during your showings.

 

 

The Parade of Homes Starts Today! Minneapolis MN

I love the Parade of Homes and it starts today! Even though it doesn’t feel like Spring in Minneapolis, the start of the Parade signals the start of the Spring Market and that brings hope that the days will become longer and trees should start to bud soon.

Tour 472 New Construction homes at all price levels. Free guidebooks are available at Holiday Station stores. You can map out a certain area of the Twin Cities or choose based on price.

If you have never been to any Parade of Homes I encourage you to do so. Even if you are not in the  market for a new construction home, it is a fun reason to get out of the house and get some decorating ideas.  It also is a way to keep current on what’s in style for updating your own home if you are going to do any updates or put it on the market.

The Models are open Thursdays – Sundays Noon – 6:00 PM. In addition, The Remodeler’s Showcase is March 29-31st which has 59 remodeled homes for you to tour.

If you happen to tour House #434 in Lakeville, check out the home staging as well from yours truly!

You can find more details about the Parade Of Homes at www.paradeofhomes.org

Selling Your Home When You Have Pets – Home Staging Minneapolis

Let me be the first to say that I love animals! Love love love. That does however exclude snakes 🙂

But…when I put my house up for sale I had to address the issue of my dogs and what I was going to do when I had showings. It is something you need to give some serious thought to and discuss with your Real Estate Agent.

Although it is disclosed that there is a an animal in the home, it is always best if the potential buyer never encounters or sees your pet. They do not always read all the disclosures or remember them from house to house and either way, it is best that when they enter your home they see no sign of your pet. 

This includes:

  • No Kennel
  • No Food and Water Bowls
  • No Beds or Toys

Now this is tougher for cat owners as if the cat if left in the home, the kitty litter needs to be left in the home. If that is the case make sure the kitty litter is in a concealed area. The lower level and such as the furnace room is best. Please make sure it is not on the main level and for sure not in one of the main living areas or a bath tub. A covered litter box versus an open one as pictured should be used and keep it clean!

 

Cats that run and hide when someone enters a house really aren’t much of a problem. If you have a social cat  that will greet the buyers at the door, you again may want to make arrangements for your cat to not be in the home.

 

Here are some general reasons why your pet should not be in the home:

  1. Some people just aren’t animal lovers and having them in the home freaks them out.
  2. Even if they are animal lovers they won’t know if your pet is friendly and may be uncomfortable.
  3. If your dog is a barker and is laying in a crate barking the entire time, the buyer will be annoyed and rush through looking at your home. Plus it will leave the buyer with a negative emotional feeling about your home.
  4. If the buyer sees dog beds, cat toys etc it triggers their mind to think about scratched woodwork or piddle on the carpet. They will put more scrutiny in viewing your home.
  5. Your pet may be injured – yes….not everyone grows up with respect for animals and people may poke or jab at your pet even in their kennels.
  6. If your pet hurts anyone for any reason in your home you are liable.

I want to bring up little furry critters like guinea pigs and also reptiles. If I saw a snake in a cage in a bedroom I’d be out of there SO FAST!! Have a friend or family member babysit little critters and reptiles while your house is for sale.

And let’s address odor. Unfortunately almost all pets can leave some kind of odor. Be aware of that and take some precautions with additional bathing and opening windows when possible to air out the house.

It is a pain when selling your home with pets (and kids which was a different blog post “Selling Your Home When You Have Young Children”), there just isn’t any way to get around it. When I sold my home I made arrangements that I needed a four hour notice of any showings so I could get home, get my Saint Bernards in the truck along with their beds, toys and bowls; wipe down all doggy slobbers and do a quick vacuum. The feedback I received was “I can’t believe there is a pet in this house.” Perfect! And little did they know it was two Saints totaling almost 400 pounds!

At least it was before I had three! (old photo…look how young I was!)

 

 

So give it some thought and then talk with your Realtor to see what works best for you and your pet.