How to Organize Your Living Room for a Sale


Homeownership in the U.S. was at 64.8% in the third quarter of 2019. Around 701,000 people bought homes in 2019.

While the real estate market is good, sellers still need to prep their home to help attract more buyers. Within each room there are a few steps a seller can take to make the space pop.

But it's not just about knowing how to stage furniture. Creating a living room strategy can help you sell your home and move with less stress. Keep reading to learn how to stage a living room.


Your Living Room Strategy Begins by Removing Clutter

Clutter causes anxiety and depression. Clutter will affect you and your ability to make smart decisions. It will also cause most potential home buyers running for the door. Here's how to tackle the biggest areas of clutter in the living room.

Books and Magazines

Books and magazines can often be challenging to try to declutter. Many people struggle with letting go of information.

Here are a few tips on how to choose which books and magazines to keep and which to donate, sell or recycle.

  • Remember most books are available in a digital form.

  • You can always check the book out from a library or buy it again if you really need it.

  • Remove outdated books and magazines.

  • Let go of book or magazines you know you never intend to read again.

Many of us have a special place in our hearts for reading materials. It can be hard to part ways with books but if you focus on bringing joy to new readers by sharing your books, it can help let you to let them go more easily.


Surface Areas

Surface areas such as your coffee table or shelves easily attract clutter. Here are a few ways to keep surface areas clutter-free:

  • Remove personal photos and pack them away until you're ready to move

  • Assign a designated spot for every item

  • Commit to tidying up at the end of the day.

It's a smart ideato get yourself and your family to start new, healthy organizational habits before you move to your new home. If every family member commits to picking up after themselves and spends 2 minutes tidying up their space at the end of the day, clutter will never be a problem again.


(And it's a great skill to teach your kids, especially when they're young!)


Where to Store Items

After you've gone through your items and purged anything you no longer want, use or will need in your new home, you may still find there's too much stuff in your living room. Your goal is to create a bright, welcoming area that looks larger than it is.

One way to accomplish that is by removing personal items such as family photos. While one or two is fine to display, the idea is to help buyers feel they're walking into their next home, not your current one.

Which means, you may need to store a few items. Here are a few tips on how to create the look of more space:

  • Gift boxes - These look great and can store items like photographs and remote controls

  • Baskets and Bins- Baskets come in all shapes and sizes and look great. Bins are practical and stackable.

  • New Furniture - Invest in furniture with built-in storage such as an ottoman.

  • Table Cloths - Use table clothes to hide clutter underneath a table. This isn't a perfect solution, but comes in handy if you're in a pinch.

Try to refrain from purchasing bins or baskets that are too large. You may never see what's on the bottom again.


How to Create More Space

This living room strategy is less about organization and more about distracting people from a few imperfections in your home. If you do need to purchase a few items, only buy something you like and can use.

Make sure that the piece looks great and functions properly. Here are a few ways to make your living room shine:

  • Add Lighting - Different lighting sources helps draw the eye away from problem areas while giving the impression your space is larger than it is.

  • Throw Pillows - Throw pillows are great because they take up very little space but can add a lot of personality to the living room.

  • Mirrors - Mirrors add extra light and create the appearance of more space.

  • Remove Heavy Curtains - Consider removing heavy curtains which take up a lot of space and replacing them with blinds.

  • Area Rugs - By removing area rugs, your living room looks clean and less cluttered.

You may also want to consider painting your living room a neutral white. It's a calming color that makes a room feel airy and light.



Additional Living Room Staging Tips

There are a few more steps you can take to help make your home look less cluttered and ready to sell. Here are a few favorites:

  • Create a Centerpiece - You can display your furniture around it. Your centerpiece can also be something like a fireplace or your view.

  • Keep Furniture Away from Walls - While you think furniture against your walls makes your living room look larger, it often throws off the balance of the room.

  • Clear a Pathway - It should be easy to walk around your living room. If you have to maneuver around furniture, it's time to reconsider your current furniture arrangement.

  • Keep Toys in a Bin - Whether it's dogs or kids, no matter how cute and well-behaved they are, sellers don't want to see them. Use bins to keep their toys organized.

You don't need to totally revamp your living room in order to prep it for a sale. Your biggest focus should be on removing any and all clutter from the space and your home.



Hire a Professional Organizer

Many people get stuck because they don't know where to start. And the prospect of putting their home on the market and moving to a new location is stressful.

That's why it's a great idea to get some help. A professional organizer can help you create a living room strategy that's designed specifically for your needs.

Alison Kero Organizing focuses on creating personalized organizational strategies that last. We also are here to help guide you through the entire process of your move and we'll help you set up your new home. Contact us today to learn more.




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© 2017 by Alison Kero. Designer by Justin Light