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selling your home when you have small children

6308753 Our friend, real estate professional Joel Macdonald, passes along this good advice for those of you with small kids who may be selling - or getting ready to sell - your home:

When you are selling your home, having the property in the best showing condition it can be has got to be your highest priority. Being able to get that feat done when you have kids can be a tough assignment at best, let alone to keep it in that condition all the time your home is on the market. There are a few easy actions you can take to keep your home showable even with little ones living their regular lives.

Organization is the Key Thing

Children of all ages tend to stockpile toys of all kinds. They like variety. As a parent you might have gotten used to the sight of clutter, but someone who is not used to being around small children can notice it. The first step to take, then, in getting your home ready to go on the market is to organize your children's belongings so they can easily be put away and mostly out of sight. This can be approached by getting and using toy chests or storage boxes. Find storage that fits into the space without being too obvious.

Clean up the Exterior of the House

Putting things away on the outside of your home is important as well. Try finding ways to set up, or store, the children's outdoor toys in a neat and tidy way to present the outside of your house well. Toys that cannot be stored in a garage or outdoor storage do not have to be all put away but they must not present a cluttered appearance.

Of course, the regular practice of clearing out things that are not needed in a systematic manner is just as pertinent to the young family members' things as it is to all the other old treasures. This is an excellent skill even if you are not going to move. Children as well as adults have to learn to make decisions. Learning the process of letting things go and moving on is a necessary part of life. This process can be a growth opportunity for the children, though it will be important to get their participation and not force their decisions. That would only interfere with the lesson to be gained.

Keeping It Up
Some discipline will be required to keep everything in order after you are all organized. Trying to keep everything reasonably neat after it is sorted can be difficult, but it is not impossible. Once you have your storage set up, keeping everything in order will be much easier. Limit the number of different things your children are playing with. You can even make the goal of keeping the house straight an adventure or challenge for your kids. They in turn may even remind you to keep other things in the house organized as well.

Don't try and keep your children from all their regular play while you are selling your home. There is no need to turn your home into a sterile clean home where it would seem no children would be allowed. Many people in the market for a family home are happy to see a house that is inviting to live in, with toys in use. Just be aware that it should be kept on the neater side of normal.

If you have children who are messy painters it might be a step-saver to put down a rug for them to play on that can be put away when potential buyers come to see the home. That way you can prevent any cleanup needed to pop back into the neat appearance of a newly cleaned home. Keeping the finger paints put away and out of sight during the time the home is offered for sale might be a good approach too.

It's not too impossible, is it, to allow the children to continue with their normal lives while you are offering your home in the good condition that a real estate sale demands. A little patience and attention, together with organization and daily attention to clearing up clutter, will make the sale of your home with young children much more manageable.

Article provided through Automated Homefinder, the Boulder home specialists of Colorado.