How to Stage Your Closets Before Making Your Next Move
Many homebuyers are on the move, trading their current home for another one. Buying and selling in quick succession can be challenging, at best. But everything will go better if you begin preparing as early as possible. One of the best places to start is your closets!
Closets may be intended as storage spaces. But they also tend to be the places where “junk” accumulates, out of sight, out of mind.
If you’re planning to sell your home and buy another one, consider tackling your closets first, preparing them to make the best impression on buyers!
1. Less is More
Since you’ll need to pack all your possessions, eventually, go ahead and box up out-of-season clothes, shoes, and other closet items you use infrequently. (Or, donate them and lighten your moving load!)
One exception: Consider reserving a few showcase pieces, even if you rarely wear them, for display purposes. A beautiful, bulky hand-knit sweater, an expensive purse, or a pair of trendy shoes can help give your home a luxe feel, subtly telling buyers it’s worth spending more on this place.
But pack up those dirty, worn shoes that you only use for yard work! Or hide them if you’ll be using them before moving day.
Also, consider where to store all your boxes. Many soon-to-be-sellers pay for offsite storage if they can’t lean on friends and relatives to provide temporary stacking space.
Closets appear larger when they aren’t jam-packed. Plus, it’s much easier to organize a closet with some “breathing space.”
You’ll also help create the impression that there’s plenty of room for the buyer’s stuff. Make it easier for them to imagine filling the closets with their things instead of feeling crowded out.
2. Turn Chaos into Calm
It’s easier to organize a half-full closet. But you can still create a serene sense of order, even if you only manage to remove some items. And, this vital step can make a big difference with buyers.
Cluttered, messy closets are a turn-off and can send unconscious messages about the owner’s commitment to keeping their home in tip-top shape. Buyers may only glance in your closets. But when they do, help them feel assured by what they see.
Start by purchasing sturdy, matching hangers. Transfer all your clothes onto the new hangers, oriented in the same direction. Then, start arranging them on the rods by color, from dark to light.
If some of your clothing drapes onto the floor or a lower rod, pack it up, so the rest of the closet looks neat and tidy.
Also, invest in a coordinating set of storage containers. Opt for containers made of opaque materials that will hide what’s inside. Solid containers are better at creating visual order than clear or translucent ones.
3. Fold and Stack (But Not too High!)
Be sure to hide unruly sock collections or a jumble of purses with long straps in containers. But some items, like bulky sweaters, fleece tops, and jeans, look best when stacked neatly on shelves.
Just try to limit the height of each stack to six inches or so. Also, fold the pieces carefully so each pile’s width is consistent and the folded edges face out.
4. Boost the Lighting
Storage spaces look more significant when the lighting is bright. To help your closets glow, start with your existing fixtures.
Remove any bulb coverings and clean them, inside and out. Before securing them back in place, make sure you’re using bulbs with the highest allowed wattage.
Also, consider the quality of light. Storage spaces don’t need warm, soft mood lighting. Instead, use whiter, brighter “daylight” bulbs. Today’s economical LEDs make it easy to control the color of your lighting while also generating energy savings.
To add more light, try installing inexpensive LED strips around the interior side of the door frame or under shelves. Some strips are battery-operated and motion-activated.
After the Move
You may discover that a “staging mindset” travels with you after you’ve landed in your new home. That’s great!
Aim to keep your new closets as well organized and clutter-free as possible. It will make life more enjoyable in your new home—and lessen the workload if you ever decide to make another move.