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Prepping my house to sell and looking back at old posts...

11 years ago

First of all, looking back at old posts was VERY interesting. You could feel the sense of panic and despair back 2-3 years ago. It's not quite as palpable now. That is a good sign, I think. I'm not saying things are say, 2004-level rosy, but the overall tone is much more upbeat.

Anyway, so I am prepping my house to put on the market and at first it was overwhelming. The house is not in bad shape at all, but it's not ready for the market. We have done extensive remodeling, repairs, improvements, maintenance, etc., so there's not a lot of huge things that need to be done--just a ton of tiny ones, know what I mean?

I was so overwhelmed that I sort of just froze and didn't do anything except read stuff on the internet and think about what needed to be done (as opposed to doing it).

Then I realized that there is no way it is ever going to get done if I don't start. So this is what I did: I told myself that I only need to do ONE thing a day. That thing can be as simple as packing a box. Or ordering boxes. Or making a phone call. Or ordering stuff to use for staging. Internet surfing without a purpose (like ordering boxes or something) does not count because if it did, that's what I would do as my one thing every day.

So far, since I instituted my plan of "do one thing a day," this is what I have done:

1. Measured and ordered new flooring for the kitchen (we had an appliance leak that caused some damage so it needs to be replaced).

2. Ordered boxes - they will be here next week.

3. Arranged to pick up boxes at my work and from my friends.

4. Called a real estate agent and arranged an appointment next week for a preliminary meeting.

5. Ordered two new light fixtures at super clearance prices (28 and 30 bucks) to replace some dated fixtures and make an inexpensive wow.

6. Bought fabric to recover some dining seat cushions.

7. Bought primer and paint to repaint my two front doors.

8. Cleaned both doors and primed one of them (I am taking a break and having some breakfast, then it's back at it).

9. Ordered a bunch of little stagy things, like throws and pillows, at super clearance prices. Fortunately I have neutral white comforters and shams for all of the beds, so I am building on that with pillows in cream and white.

10. Got the name and number of some flooring guys to put in the new floor.

11. Visited a storage/moving place and found out how much it will cost to have a couple of guys come and move out most of the stuff that will need to be stored while the house is on the market.

12. Figured out what furniture is staying and what will go.

13. Came up with a plan to give a function to the little alcove in the "mudroom" area of the house. Right now it houses a big old upright freezer but that is going. I am going to put a little bench in with cubbies and baskets up top, a la Pottery Barn style.

14. Found the exact cubbies I needed after I decided to do this on super clearance, along with clearance baskets, and ordered them. I thought I was going to have to build them!

There's probably 4-5 more things too but here's the kicker--I only decided to make this "one thing per day" rule on Thursday. It turns out if I just tell myself that I only need to do one thing a day, I do the thing and that makes me want to get more done. Motivation follows Action--that really is true.

I just thought I would share. If others are in the same stage as me and feeling sort of paralyzed, it is something to try. Who knows how long it will work, but for now it's just what I needed. Still trying to decide whether to list the house when it should be ready (thinking first of October or mid-September) or wait until early spring. It's a big house with an inlaw suite, and it's been my experience that people who want an inlaw suite are year-round shoppers, because we've put one in every house we've bought and so we've sold a few now. I dunno, though. The largeness of the house suggests that it will appeal to families, but two of the three people who tried to buy my last house were older with no children. Hmmmm.

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