What to do with Excess Clutter Before you Sell

If you ask 10 people looking for a new home what turns them off most about the homes they look at, a good portion of those buyers will say that it's the clutter they see. Clutter can include that tangle of shoes and boots at your front door, the stacks of magazines all across your living room and even all the dishes crammed in your kitchen cabinets. Your Realtor© may recommend that you go on a major cleaning binge before you sell. While this can sound time consuming, you can do the job in less time than you expected.


Contact Your Trash Company

Before you go crazy and start tossing out lots of things, contact your trash company. Let the company know that you will have more items going out than usual. Depending on the amount of trash that you expect to have, you might ask about renting a dumpster or a bulk pick up. With a bulk pick up, the company may schedule a time in advance to collect all your trash and ask that you do not put out any trash until that date. When you rent a dumpster, you can fill it all the way to the top and schedule a pick up time.


Set Aside Items to Donate

Cleaning is the perfect time to purge your home of the things that you do not need as well as those objects that you do not use. Make sure that you have plenty of boxes on hand for those items. While you can hold a yard sale and get rid of the clutter, you may not have enough time to hold a sale because of your moving schedule. Items that are clean and in good condition can go to local charities in need.


Organize the Rest

The only items that you should keep are those that you use regularly or will use in the near future. Once you pare down your home, you can organize those items based on room or usage type. To make moving easier, go ahead and storage and organize the items you will not need until you move to a new home like holiday decorations, special occasion cookware and out of season clothing. Take the time to organize each room in your home as well as your closets and any outdoor buildings like a shed or garage.


Pack What You Can

The more you pack now, the less packing you need to do later. While you want to keep out utensils and cookware as well as your kids' favorite games, toys and books, you may find that you do not necessarily need all the items in your home right now or even in the near future. Pack what you can in sturdy cardboard boxes. Write a packing list on the outside that lists the contents. You can then store those boxes in your garage or even a storage unit that you rent for a few months.


Ask for a Second Opinion

Don't be afraid to ask for a second opinion. Let your Realtor© do a walk through a few weeks before an open house. He or she can give you feedback about what you need to work on and what others will view as clutter. After doing some work, you can ask the Realtor© to come back and check your progress. Family and friends can help you declutter and give you feedback too. When you take care of all the excess clutter in your home, you can feel more confident when it comes time to move.