Good Questions: Real Estate and Children

Good Questions: Real Estate and Children

Sep 7, 2007

AT reader Gen asks, "My condominium is for sale, which means that we have potential buyers coming by with very little notice, and open houses scheduled on the weekends. I have two children (one 3 and a 1/2 year old and one 13 month old) and my Realtor is gently suggesting that the place look as little as possible like children live here, to maximize our chances of selling. I laughed, but she is serious - nothing outside of their bedroom, and even that she wants looking spartan. We only have 2 bedrooms, no basement or external storage. Any ideas?"

We posted once that toy chests are the worst form of long term storage, but if all you need is short term storage, an adult-looking variation on toy chests might be the way to go.

Since your Realtor wants less a less kid-friendly atmosphere, maybe the trick is to hide the toys and general child-detritus in plain site, in very un-childlike containers. We really like these Resin Wicker storage boxes (pictured above), because they can be stacked, and also will fold flat if you don't need them in the new place. These are $17.99 each, and if it was us, we would buy a lot of them, and toss all the kids' stuff in them and then stack them unobtrusively somewhere, possibly in a closet, right before each showing.

Faux leather banker's boxes(right) are also pretty non-kid like, and could be filled, then stacked several high. And at $13.99 CAN each, a steal.

AT Readers, some of you must have been through the challenge of keeping a house in 'buyer ready' condition while still living in it with you kids. How did you do it, and keep your sanity in the process?

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