Once you’ve made the big decision of selling your home, it’s time to get your rooms prepped for visitors to make their way through. As they view your home, they try to imagine meshing their lives with your house. And, they will wonder how to fit all their things into the space. This snooping will include peering into closets, vanities, and other areas. Because of this, there are several bedroom and bathroom items which you should put away before the first showing.
Why it matters if you put away these items
Knowing that others will be assessing your space can be a little disconcerting. But, let’s be honest. When you viewed your home—or as you seek a new home now—you are likely to do likewise.
So, put yourself into the buyer’s shoes and give them the wow factor that convinced you to buy your house. When they walk into a clean, uncluttered, trim-looking space, they will perceive that there is ample storage for everything they have.
In addition to the aesthetics, you protect your belongings. While the buyers are pre-qualified for mortgages and working with a real estate agent who stays with them as they tour, it never hurts to be safe. There is no use in tempting fate!
Items to Put Away Before Home Buyers Tour Your Home
Here are some things to never leave lying around during home showings.
1 – Cash and jewelry
So, you are a homeowner. And that probably means you don’t have stacks of cash lying around to tempt those browsers.
But, small items like cash and jewelry are hard for some people to resist. You don’t know if the buyers come in alone or even with little ones who might see something shiny and grab it innocently enough.
Also, you don’t want possible buyers to get the impression that you are loaded with money. That could precipitate a low-ball offer in off-chance that you don’t care about the selling price.
Before you leave your home during a showing, lock them in a safe or lockbox. If your safe is portable, carry it with you when you go and keep your car doors locked as you kill time.
2 - Prescriptions and medications
It seems like each time you tune into the evening news, you hear about the prescription drug abuse epidemic. Prescriptions, especially certain classes of painkillers, are coveted by thieves. You legitimately use a medication prescribed by your doctor.
However, some people will stop at nothing to obtain medications by hook or by crook. Invest in a lockable cabinet or put these in a safe before you vacate the premises during a tour.
3 – Paperwork with your personal data
You should always shred your mail. Dumpster diving for obtaining personal data is a common practice around the country. And, the trash in your bedroom or bathroom is also fair game for theft.
And, it might not be only mail. Think about documents like your passport, social security card, insurance card, bank statements, etc. Once a dishonest person grabs this data, they can easily apply for credit cards or loans using your good credit with their own address for receiving statements.
As you know, you should not open up credit accounts as you are purchasing a new home—and it would be a real shame to learn someone had stolen your identity and done just that.
4 – Firearms or weapons
You might be an avid marksman or enjoy hunting. Then, you probably realize that firearms and other weapons must be secured in a gun safe away from children or those untrained in proper use.
However, once they see your gun safe, buyers will be attuned to the fact that you might have handguns around the house.
Where’s the first place they look? The nightstand drawer. It makes sense that you want to protect your family, but an unlocked gun can easily fall into unskilled hands.
Moreover, if the person who is touring your home opposes gun rights, they may opt to pass over your home based on personal beliefs.
5 – Space heaters
Some people love keeping a space heater in the bathroom to warm up the floors for when they emerge from their shower, nice and toasty warm. Or, they run one to knock a slight chill out of the bedroom before bedtime without heating the entire home.
Your reasons for using a space heater in your home may be a personal preference and not necessarily a reflection on how efficient your HVAC runs. However, buyers see it as a red flag.
Before open houses or home showings, unplug them and store them out of sight.
6 – Signs that you smoke
If you are a smoker, you can freshen the air, clean the carpets, and air out the house. But once a non-smoker sees evidence of cigarettes, they automatically start whiffing to try to pick up on even the faintest trace of smoke odors.
That can be a deal killer when you’re selling your home. Remove your cigarettes, cigars, vape products, lighters, and accessories from the residence during tours.
Removing Personal Items from Your Bedroom and Bathroom
Removing these items from your bedroom, bathroom, or any other area of your home can be an inconvenience. The fact remains, though, that you genuinely do not know who the realtor is working with at any given time. Even an honest person can be tempted. Or, a shopper might be looking for an excuse to extend a lower offer.
As a graduate of William & Mary and hailing from a Military family, Monique brings an array of experience to the table and utilizes her background to help serve the varying needs of our buyers and sellers.