Home staging helps your house look its very best while simultaneously providing buyers with a chance to imagine the property’s possibilities. Decluttering and preparing your residence for photographs and viewings can be challenging, especially if you have children turning the house upside down every day.
Instead of throwing your hands up in defeat, it may be time to take a closer look at these six tips to stage your kid’s rooms effectively.
1. Depersonalize the Space
When potential buyers enter a property, they’re trying to imagine how it might be if they lived there. Toys and children’s artwork hanging everywhere can be distracting, especially if they don’t have kids. While it’s important to depersonalize the house, you should pay special attention to children’s bedrooms and playrooms. These rooms are typically the opposite of universal design and often have child-friendly decorations.
When depersonalizing, start by removing anything that may have your child’s name on it. For safety reasons, it’s better to have your kids remain as anonymous as possible since strangers will be touring the house and viewing the online photos. You should also remove artwork and posters. Remind your children that it’s just temporary and you’ll send everything to the new house.
2. Pack up Infrequently Used Items
Kids love toys, but most have a few set favorites they value above all else. Begin by packing away anything your kids have outgrown and consider donating them to a local charity. Include your children in this process to teach them the benefits of giving to those in need. At this stage, you can also throw away any items that are broken. Once you’ve narrowed down what’s remaining, it’s time to begin packing up the things your kids use infrequently.
You’ll also want to pack away any large playsets you can’t hide from view during a house showing. Since you’re trying to avoid major messes, it’s also worthwhile to hide craft supplies and toys with small pieces. This will keep daily cleanup stress-free and straightforward.
3. Utilize Practical Storage Solutions
Practical storage solutions make a massive impact when staging your children’s rooms. Labeling them makes the area look more organized, and it will help your kids identify which boxes they need to use when putting items away. You can easily tuck away clothes and books, especially when living in a house you’re staging for visits and open houses.
Many parents decide to move when they learn a new baby is on the way. If this is your situation, you can use your baby registry to ask for stylish storage solutions that you can utilize before the child is born. Stage your current residence and then know you’ll have great options in the home you buy.
Even if your kids are older, it may still be worth asking family and friends if they have any unused storage containers you can borrow while your home is on the market. They may have many they’d be willing to share, which can help when it’s time to stage the room itself.
4. Choose a Neutral Design
When staging any room for resale, you want to adopt a neutral design. Since the buyer may not have children — or may have teenagers — it’s best to paint the walls a neutral color to give the new family a fresh start. It’s best to choose a light and airy shade like taupe or white to give the impression of a larger space.
Since young kids love to run their hands along the walls, you may want to opt for an off-white or slightly pigmented color to hide any smudges that may occur after painting. Besides adding a new wall color, you may want to change the bedding and kid-friendly decorations like light-switch covers and cartoonish lamps.
5. Save Time for Cleaning
As you undoubtedly know, a room can look perfect one night and like a disaster the next, so save time for cleaning. Help potential buyers envision perfect, clean children living in this new home — even if that is a bit of a fantasy.
On the day of a showing, get the kids out of the house early, so you have a few minutes to tidy up their rooms. Besides organizing, you’ll want to clean any crumbs or other presences of dirt you notice in their play areas.
6. Prevent Messes Before They Happen
Preventing messes before they happen will save you a lot of trouble when trying to clean, stage and sell your house. As previously mentioned, you should remove toys with small parts and craft projects that scream problems waiting to happen.
You should also reinforce rules for the children, like cleaning up after themselves and only eating in the kitchen and dining room. Any preventive planning you can do now will save you time on house-showing days.
Staging Children’s Rooms for a Home Sale
These six tips will help you to stage your children’s rooms effectively. Remember to look around the house for other areas where your kids may have left their toys or made a mess. Even if the rooms look perfect, a plastic toy covered in goo that’s stuck in the bathroom will destroy your carefully crafted facade.
While you don’t need to erase all indications of a child in the home, everything should be kept as clean and tidy as possible — especially on showing days.
Evelyn Long is the editor-in-chief of Renovated. She published maintenance and decor advice for homeowners looking to buy and sell properties.