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Lynn Brock, Real Estate Pro in Sarasota, FL

A cluttered listing. What are some techniques employed to improve presentability?

Asked by Lynn Brock, Sarasota, FL Sat Jul 14, 2012

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If the property is beyon reason and the seller is not willing to entertain your professional advice this may be an indicator of an even larger this scenario agents should be ready to pass on a listing that culd be a "mine field."

Too many agents suffer from the inability to "just say no" to sellers that don't value an agent's expertise.

2 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jul 14, 2012
Hi Lynn,

What I've had luck with in the past is to take a video and show the Seller.

I think sometimes owners don't realize how bad it actually looks until they see a video.

Then show them virtual tours of competing properties that are nicely staged.

I like the saying that the Seller's House (don't call it "home" to a seller) is a "product" and the seller can either change the product (declutter and clean, clean, clean) or change the price. If it's cluttered, has grandma or worn out furniture, the Seller will then be in the same category as distressed bank owned properties.

Also show the Sellers the Before and After photos on

Lastly if it's a high enough priced listing, offer to pay the cost of a Stager to come in and you will "reimburse" the Sellers at closing. The Stager can be the "bad guy" to tell the Sellers to clean their home and windows, etc. Well worth the money on a higher priced listing!

Hope this helps.

All the best,
Alma Kee
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jul 14, 2012
Hi Lynn

Have you had a discussion with your sellers regarding the clutter? If not, they may think there's no problem. Unfortunately, there is no easy way around it and the issue must be specifically addressed if they want to get top dollar for their home.

Good Luck,

Barbara Grandolfo
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jul 14, 2012
They can get short term storage for non-essentials, it will save time packing later on. Heavy, esp dark window treatments should be removed as well. Everything should be removed from kitchen counter tops and bathroom sinks or shelves. They can add some decorative candles, flower vases, etc. Along with decluttering goes a thorough deep cleaning of the property, including carpets. Paint touch up and replacement of unattractive fixtures (old white ceiling fans, etc) are also essential. Entrance door area should be cleared of clutter and clean - door, exterior walls, walk way.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jul 14, 2012
Unless you have an invisibility cloak, you goatta get the stuff otta there. If the home is really for sale, the owner knows they need to start packing. They can pack and store boxes in garage or in a storage unit or rent a POD.

Or, you can choose to sacrifice the least attractive room to be the catch-all for the clutter.

If they are not receptive to the idea of 'packing' there may be counter intentions in play.

Hopefully you don't have a 'clutter and owner present during showing' double whammy!

If the source of the clutter is due to the dynamics of a young family, well, that requires a different solution.

Best of success to you.
Annette Lawrence, Broker/Associate
Remax Realtec Group, Palm Harbor, FL
727.420.4041 -
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jul 14, 2012
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