1. PHONE A FRIEND (WITH A GARAGE OR EMPTY BASEMENT): If you’re like most of us, you have stuff. And if you’re moving, stuff needs to get packed up at some point so your best move is to pack it up and ship it out before buyers start arriving. So, call a friend or family member with space and invest in Rubbermaid bins or boxes. Suggestion: Get boxes or bins that are the same size. Makes stacking and organizing much easier.
2. CRAFT YOUR MASTER PLAN: Moving should involve a plan, timelines and benchmarks. Sit down (with help is advisable, nudge, nudge, wink wink) and draw out your timeline. We want to move in June or July. Knowing a home in our neighbourhood sells for ‘x’ in ‘y’ number of days on average, that means we have until Feb 20th to have our house ready. That gives us 42 days. We have 11 rooms (and 15 closets) to clean and prepare. Knowing it will take us 2 days per room plus cleaning out the garage and/or other areas, we needs 28 days to get the house ready. Add on a week for unknowns and we should be ok. Then see step 3…
3. SPEND A DOLLAR, MAKE 5: There are improvements, maintenance or general work that you can do that will provide a return on investment. Whether the investment is dollars spent (on steam cleaning carpets for example) or your own labour, done properly, there will be a return on your money and/or time. This is where sound and informed advice is crucial.
4. TOP to BOTTOM: On a large piece of paper, make 3 columns. Give this job to the ‘excel spreadsheet aficionado’ in the family. Here is a snapshot of what you’re going to work with:
|Master Bedroom||Pack up out-of-season clothes||Done|
|Clear dresser tops and bed side tables||Done|
|Clean out closets||In Progress|
|Fix broken curtain rod||To Do|
|Front Spare Room||Clean out closets||To Do|
|Back Spare Room||Paint||To Do|
And on and on it goes. The key to this is to not only have to-do items but to have a way to measure your success. To-do lists get a lot more pleasant to look at as items are crossed off. Another suggestion: Start upstairs and only move on to room #2 when room #1 is complete (unless you are painting….in that case it will make more sense to paint both at the same time).
5. BUY A GALLON OF TRIM PAINT: Sure its not the most fun thing to do but clean, fresh and white trim goes a long way to brighten up the décor of your home. Preparation includes washing, perhaps some re-caulking and/or sanding. The nice thing about it is you do it once and you’re done. And take comfort in the fact that buyers will notice it. And if you have original dark wood trim, well that has to be looked at in the grand scheme of your home in terms of style and era.
6. REWARD YOURSELF: At some point along the way, you need to give yourself a reward. Go out for a dinner, order in sushi, take a night off. It is crucial to keep your stress and fatigue levels in check. Don’t try to conquer the to-do list in 24 hours or less. Remember….HGTV is not real life. Real life moving can include sweat, back pain and the odd argument. Be aware, pace yourself and don’t forget to have a bit of fun mixed in. Now get back to work!
7. WHO DOES WHAT?: If you are a couple or a family, best to divide & conquer. Once the work is complete and your home is actively on the market, you still must maintain it to a show-ready condition. Who is in charge of keeping the rec room ready for showings? Do you have kids? What is their role? Not including them in the process is a dangerous proposition. Make sure they’re in the loop and part of the team. Their job is their bedrooms or the play room. Maybe they help with emptying the dishwasher or rec room. A team (or family) meeting is a great idea. Going into a move without a plan will lead to fatigue and general trouble.
And that’s about it. (…for now!). Having professional advice will really help you navigate the waters. Whether you contact us or not, we would suggest this one nugget of advice:
The preparation, work and effort that goes into the PRE-listing period will set
up the big picture of your home and how the market perceives its value.
We hope you have found this to be helpful. If you would like to meet and discuss your home and craft a brilliant master plan, contact us anytime.
Thank-you for visiting!