When getting ready to put your house on the market there are some fundamental things you must know. First, you must understand that your personal taste in furnishings, decorating, and landscaping is lousy. Beyond lousy. Your taste stinks. And no one will ever want to purchase your home if it furnished, decorated, or landscaped with your personal touch. No, you must clear out all evidence that real live human beings actually live in your home, and pretend you are furnishing your home for an upscale hotel chain. Then, and only then, will you be able to find a buyer for your property.
Obviously you will need to hire experts to do this work for you. The first item on the agenda should be to hire a stager. A stager is a person whose job it is to walk around other people’s houses and criticize their furnishings, decorations and landscaping. If he succeeds in convincing you that you need his services, you will need to hire a large storage unit and a moving van. After you move out all your personal belongings, the stager can set your house up properly (so it looks like an upscale hotel chain).
Your realtor might also recommend a landscaping crew. Their job is to come in and weed, prune, and/or destroy the yard you have lovingly cultivated over the years. If you are lucky, you will end up with a yard that looks like something from a gardening magazine. If you are not, you will have a bunch of mutilated shrubs, bushes and trees that resemble overgrown Hobbits.
A cleaning crew is an indispensable part of this process. You must hire cleaners to mop the floors, clean the windows, scrub your baseboards, and get into all the nooks and crannies that you haven’t touched in the past twenty years (or since you purchased the house). After the cleaning crew leaves, you will be expected to keep the house looking this nice. This means that every morning and/or evening you will need to vacuum, scrub counters, clean toilets, etc. If you have a full-time job, this will prove to be impossible. Your realtor will therefore want you to hire the cleaning crew to come back on a weekly basis until the house sells.
Another important thing to remember is that pets are forbidden. Remember, most upscale hotel chains do not allow pets. If you have a pet, your realtor will encourage you to board said pet until the house sells. If this is not possible, you will need to remove all evidence that the pet exists. When you show the home, you will need to hide your pet’s food and water, bed, toys, blankets, and any other evidence that might indicate a four-legged creature lives in your abode. And of course, you must remove the pet from the property when potential buyers come to visit!
People who live in upscale hotel chains do not read books or newspapers, use toiletry products, eat, or have guests over. Therefore, neither will you. At least, not in your house, until it sells.
Now that you are living in an antiseptic hotel-room-sort-of-house, it is time to ask yourself the all important question: Why exactly are we moving? Maybe, just maybe, the best strategy is to stay right where you are.