Why Should I Remove Personal Items When Staging My House?

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    What is the single most important thing to remember when trying to sell your home?


    It is highly important to remove all of your personal items from your home when staging the house for sale. If you ensure that your prospect feels as comfortable as possible walking through your home during the viewing, as if they already live there, then you are halfway to selling the home by that courtesy alone. Just remember to avoid potential pitfalls such as distracting clutter or “showing your hand” when it comes to controversial subjects like religion, politics, and – yes – even opinions about sports teams.

    Stage It

    Staging your home is all about keeping the potential buyer in mind. You want them to be able to visualize themselves living there and, by extension, purchasing the property. The phrase “staging your home,” simply means to make your home more generic and appealing to a wider audience. The best way to do this is to remove as many of your personal items as possible and store them in an out of sight place.

    You want to help them look past any faults in the home and, honestly, the best way to do that is to highlight what’s good about it. When you stage your home correctly, it will accentuate the best parts of it and give it a higher probability to sell your house fast.

    Remove Stuff

    The first thing you want to do, as previously mentioned, is to remove any personal items from sight. This includes pictures of you and your family, any small items you are using for decoration, and refrigerator door clutter. Any toys, unfolded laundry, piles of shoes, or even clean dishes sitting in the dishwasher should be removed from the view of the potential buyer and stored away.

    If there are any closets in your home that are overfilled and messy, you should remove non-essentials and make the closets look as neat as humanly possible to better showcase it for your potential home buyer. They will open all of the closets, the cabinets, and even the dishwasher when they are viewing your home because they want to know everything about the house they may potentially buy. For this reason, tidiness is especially important.

    If you do not have room to store all of these personal items, you may think about renting out a storage unit until the home is sold. When you remove all of these items, you create space for the prospect to insert themselves into the home. They will have an easier time imagining themselves living there with their own family if you strip away the reminder that you live there at the moment. Nobody wants to feel as though they are intruding on someone’s personal space and, when all of your intimate belongings are scattered throughout the house, that’s just what they feel.

    Imagine how you feel when you walk into a friend’s home for the first time. You walk on eggshells because you are trying to be respectful and you don’t feel comfortable. Now, remember how it feels to visit an apartment you are thinking of renting. You don’t feel shy at all when you walk into an empty apartment and, more likely than not, you feel perfectly justified in opening the closets and the cabinets to make sure everything is in great shape before signing the lease.

    Create a Welcoming Environment

    You want prospective home buyers to feel that same sense of peace when they walk into the house you are trying to sell them. You may not be able to completely clear the house of absolutely everything, but that’s okay. As long as you create a welcoming, inviting atmosphere that permits the prospect to move freely about the home, you will be successful.

    A lot of homeowners who are selling their homes are still living in the house until they find a buyer, and that’s okay. You may not be able to give the prospective home buyer a blank canvas experience (like looking at a vacant apartment), but you can aim for something a little different. When you stage the home, replace all of your family photos with tasteful artwork. Remove personal decorations and put something more neutral in their stead, like pencil holders or clocks or an unlit scented candle. These are the generic items that will be overlooked, which is our intent so that the focus can be on the home you are trying to sell.


    Removing your personal items isn’t always about ensuring that the prospective home buyer isn’t distracted by clutter or feeling like a trespasser as they look through your home during a viewing. It’s also about the very real possibility of bias. There are plenty of prospective homebuyers who may choose to decline to buy your home due to any conflict with you regarding politics, religion, personal lifestyle choices, and so on.

    Of course, this isn’t a kind or even fair reason to decline to purchase a house from you, but it happens. You can avoid the possibility of this happening altogether by simply removing your personal items from your home. Think of it as “anything that can be used against you, will be used against you,” and the probability of you losing a sale for any of these reasons will significantly drop.

    We Can Help!

    If you’re still having trouble selling your San Antonio, TX home despite doing all of this and you don’t really want to pay a real estate agent a fee, you could always consider using a reputable company that buys houses for cash from homeowners. Because we buy houses in this location and nearby areas! It doesn’t matter what condition it is in–No matter what your situation is. We can offer cash for your home in just 24 hours!

    So, now you know exactly why it is so important to remove personal items from your home when allowing prospective home buyers to view it. Implement these ideas when you stage your home and let us know how they worked out for you in the comments section below. We hope we’ve helped!

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    James Vasquez

    James is the owner of Cyber Homes, a leading cash home buying company in the U.S. He primary buys and resells single family residential homes. James has purchased, fixed/renovated, and flipped over 100 houses in the 10 years of his real estate career. Helping homeowners out of difficult situations while providing for his family, is a gift from God.

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