Rosemary Papp

38 Years Local Real Estate Experience to Serve You


How to Emotionally Detach Before You Sell Your Home

Moving house isn't just about loading your furniture into a removal truck and unloading it in your new home. It also requires you to pack up your memories, and emotionally disconnect from the place where you held parties, celebrated anniversaries and raised your children. Drawing a line under a chapter of your life is tough. But if you refuse to pack your emotions along with the winter clothes, you unwittingly sabotage your chances of a successful home sale.

Selling their home can feel like cutting off an arm for some sellers. But if you still see your property as your home and not as a product to be packaged for sale, you won't be willing to make the changes necessary to achieve the quickest sale at the best price. Ultimately, you will lose money. Emotionally detaching from a home is never easy, but you can do it with these tips. 

1. Take your time

If you don't have to move quickly, don't. Your agent may be pushing you to list by the weekend, but that is her agenda, not yours. If the thought of leaving makes you tearful, slow down and only list when you and your house are ready.

2. Enlist help

You may not be able to pack away the family photographs but your sister, mother or husband might. Get support from your family and friends.

3. Be honest with your agent

Your agent acts in your best interests on the assumption that you want to sell your home.  She will not know how difficult this is for you unless you tell her. Be honest. If you don't tell your agent how you are feeling, and instead sabotage your chances of success by rejecting her advice, you are setting the relationship up to fail. This will make the situation more fraught than it needs to be, and you may lose out on a good deal.

4. Hire a home stager

Even if your home is in good condition, a home stager can remove your personal items and package your home ready for sale. As well as showing your home in its best light, staging will make the house feel less like your home and more like someone else's. It's a subtle but important step toward detaching.

5. Give buyers space

Regaling would-be buyers with your own personal take on the house will make them uneasy. You may have fond memories of little Jack crayoning on the wall in the kitchen, but buyers need to see the house as a blank canvas which they can make their own. Buyers need to be able to talk openly about the things they like or don't like about the home. Don't react angrily to their criticism, or you risk losing the sale. If you can't handle it, leave the house during viewings, and let your agent handle the business.

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