Preparing a house to sell is tough enough without the added challenge that comes with picking up after young children while your house is on the market.
I understand that it can be difficult to reduce the number of toys and to pick just your very favorite things to keep out while the house is being sold. I remember conducting a staging consultation for a family the day after their son’s birthday party…can you imagine how hated I was for telling him he had to pack up his “new” toys?
Those Stagers, they’re always the bad buys.
Here are a few staging tips for maintaining kids play spaces while the house is on the market. Please don’t shoot the messenger. We’re on the same team here, I promise.
1. Reduce the number of toys that are visible; choose your child’s TOP 3-5
2. Avoid keeping toys with lots of little pieces; medium size toys are the best choices and make clean-up a lot easier; very large items should be packed away
3. Collections should definitely be packed away (one stuffed animal on the bed is plenty…we don’t need a whole jungle)
4. Keep extra toys stored in bins or toy chests
5. Keep visible toys and books neatly organized on shelves or in baskets
6. If there is an extra room available, stage that as a playroom which allows for a few more items to remain available, but still try to keep it as minimal as possible.
7. NO toys should be visible in the main living spaces, i.e. formal living room and dining room. Find one space to store the toys, preferably in the child’s room.
Now before all of you think I’m being totally unreasonable and insensitive, I will let you know that I have a 3 year old child and she is by no means deprived of toys or fun. With that said, I prefer my house not to look like Toys R Us invaded it.
Here are a few photos to clarify why taming the toys is so important, particularly when selling your house… (click on them to enlarge).
I would love your feedback, so please leave your comments. I’m sure I’ll be hearing from a few of you on this one…