Prepping to Sell a Home While Caregiving

Simplify  Help  Living  Readiness  Odors  Input  Décor

Selling a house while caring for a loved one can be a serious challenge. A lot of work and time goes into preparing a house for sale, from the initial real estate legwork to making sure the house is ready for viewings and photos. Caring for a loved one adds an extra layer of complication, especially if you all live together in the home in question.

Fortunately, the right kind of forethought will make things a lot easier. It’s vital that you go into the process with a plan; otherwise, you may find yourself totally overwhelmed by the demands of selling a home. Here are a few ways you can make sure you’re ready for selling your home:

Simplify as Much as Possible

One of the best gifts you can give yourself when selling your home is the gift of simplicity. The more of a routine you have for showings and open houses, the better a shot you’ll have at nailing it every time. For example, it’s a good idea to come up with an open house checklist. This should include giving every room a good cleaning, eliminating as many odors as possible, and making plans for all pets and people during the time of the showing.

You can also keep things simple by finding good, all-purpose tools. For example, a stick vacuum is useful for cleaning large surfaces and small spaces, and it’s easy to move from room to room. You can also invest in a good all-surface cleaner so you can easily wipe down surfaces in multiple rooms without lugging a bunch of different cleaners with you.

Consider Hiring Help

It may make sense to hire an in-home assistant to help you out while you prepare your home for sale. Someone with medical training or other relevant experience can help care for your loved one while you work on cleaning, speaking with real estate agents, or other consuming tasks. This saves you from the stress of attempting to multitask.

Selling a home and caring for your loved one are both important and serious jobs. You don’t want to accidentally slip on either trying to manage both at once. By hiring a professional, you know your loved one will be properly cared for while you take on other tasks.

Secure Living Arrangements

If you’re selling your loved one’s home or selling the home you and your loved one both live in, make sure you know where everyone is going to live once the house has been sold. Transitioning between homes can be a challenge, but when you add medical care and equipment into the equation, it gets even more complicated. Ensuring that the new living situation is entirely secure and carefully planned out before you get started saves you from needing to scramble at the last minute.

Keep a Minimum Level of Readiness

One important thing to keep in mind is that sometimes realtors may give you relatively little notice when it comes to popping by with viewers. With that in mind, it’s important to make sure your home is always clean enough to make a good impression on them. Ideally, you’ll have time to wipe down all of the surfaces and make everything fresh before viewers arrive. If not, however, you’ll be glad you didn’t let things get too out of control.

Have a Friend Screen For Odors

Smells don’t have to be bad to turn buyers away; they just have to be distinctive. Unfortunately, it’s notoriously difficult to notice smells in our own home, especially those we’ve gotten used to over the years. Luckily, there’s an easy trick to figuring out if your home has a scent: bring over a friend.

Ideally, you want to ask someone you trust to tell you the truth, but who also isn’t over all the time. Let them know it’s okay to be honest with you, and have them help you identify any areas that might need special care to get to a nice, neutral scent.

When Possible, Get Your Loved One’s Input

When selling your loved one’s home, it’s important to get their input on the process if possible. It won’t always make sense or be feasible to do so, but when it is, their help can be invaluable. After all, they know the home well and may be able to help you address potential issues before inspections or highlight the best parts of the home to the real estate agent.

However, you should be prepared to deal with a variety of potential emotions while you and your loved one go through this process. Selling a home a loved one can no longer navigate or manage on their own can be painful for everyone involved. So, be sure to do something nice for yourself and your loved one after work on the house, and consider seeing a therapist or counselor can help process some of the grief of the process.

Make Décor as Neutral as Possible

Go through your home and try to make the décor as neutral as possible. Ideally, you should take down any family or other personal photos from the walls. Consider repainting any rooms that are painted with a bold or dated color. Patterned wallpaper, name décor and other distinctive types of decoration should be reconsidered as well.

The reason for this is simple — you want potential viewers to be able to easily project their own image and future into the home. The more it looks like your home, the harder it will be to picture it as theirs. By making the décor as neutral as possible, you give them the space to see a future in the home.

There are so many elements to consider while selling a home and caring for a loved one. Fortunately, if you keep a level head on your shoulders and ask for help when it’s needed, you should be able to take on the challenge.

Thank you Kristin Louis for contributing this article.

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