Have you ever talked yourself into something? Perhaps you’ve talked yourself into having that second piece of chocolate cake even though you know you shouldn’t. Maybe you’ve talked yourself into buying clothes even though you don’t need it but it’s a really good sale. Or maybe you’ve talked yourself into buying some furniture even though it is too big for the space you are going to put it.
When I help clients get their homes ready to sell (or help clients to find that love they once had for their home), I often go room to room and ask the same question: “Do you really need that?” Let’s look at 3 different spaces to show you just what I mean.
This is often a place way I see way too many clothes for the space. My question: “Do you really need that?” works perfectly for this space. When you look into your closet, do you believe there are items in there that:
- You don’t wear?
- That are too big/too small?
- Are out of date?
- That don’t belong in your clothes closet?
- That still have the tag(s) on?
To help you answer that, do the following: Go shopping in your closet. Pretend you are shopping and only select the clothes you would buy to wear. The clothes that you pick are the ones you should keep. The other clothes that are left are clothes that can be bagged up and donated or given away.
Don’t hesitate with the ‘maybes’. That self-talk of:
“I may wear that next winter…”
“Maybe I’ll need that old t-shirt to do yard work…”
“I should keep that just in case…”
“These were such a good deal…”
Stop that inner voice and stick to the question. You know what your ‘go-to’ outfits are that you wear all the time. You know the pair of jeans that make your ass look fantastic and the jeans that make you look like your 50 pounds over weight.
This is a room that I typically see way to much furniture for a particular space. My question of “Do you really need that?” is asked again. The trick to know the answer is to do the following: pay attention when you’re in the room.
- Is there a piece of furniture that never gets used?
- Is there a piece of furniture that you dislike?
- Is there a piece of furniture that is in this room that shouldn’t be?
Take a storage bench for example. These are great multipurpose benches that I see quite often. They open up and you can store games, cards, DVD’s, etc. What isn’t great is when you have no room for it OR you have more than one! If you don’t have room for a storage bench in a particular room, don’t put one in. And certainly don’t keep buying storage benches to keep putting stuff in (and yes – I have seen that).
When potential buyers are walking through a home the kitchen is typically a place where a lot of time is spent. And let’s not pretend here – potential homebuyers will look into your cupboards and drawers! To help you answer the question, “Do you really need that?” do the following:
- Take one drawer/cupboard at a time
- Empty out the entire contents to see what you have (as many things can get to the back and end up being forgotten about.
- Be ruthless: if you have a stack of napkins (maybe 5 birthday napkins, 12 Christmas napkins, 8 Thanksgiving napkins) most likely you’re not going to find the exact same Christmas napkins next year. Decide if you’re going to use them (as an every-day napkin) or if they need to be tossed/recycled/donated, etc.
- Ask yourself just how many kitchen tools/devices you use and need. Although those great orange peelers work like a hot-damn, if you don’t use them, get rid of them.
I have worked with clients that can talk themselves into keeping every thing they own. There is reasoning behind every piece of furniture, ever gadget and every piece of clothing they own. They have convinced themselves that nothing needs to go. The truth is that if you wish to sell your home, less is more! If you are finding that you’re not in love with your home because it’s become a dumping ground, then consider less is more. One of my favourite quotes:
If you need help falling in love with your home or getting it ready to sell,
Simple Changes That Won’t Break the Bank – Lighting Your Home
Simple Changes That Won’t Break the Bank – Furniture Placement
Simple Changes That Won’t Break the Bank – Paint Colour
Three Ways Your Home is Weighing You Down
How Does the Stuff You Own Let You Lead the Life You Want