The most valuable advice a professional organizer will give when asked how to best prepare to sell your house is to clear the clutter. As straightforward as this sounds initially, there are many moving parts and emotions to properly decluttering and getting organized. Talk with your realtor and home stager about what items to keep in your home for selling. Think of this as a business process other than a personal process.


You want your home to look its best for the best buyer. Staging your home will require you to remove many of your personal items. This is where you should spend your valuable time getting organized and purging the items you don’t want, love or need.


Decisions will need to be made to make the most of preparing a home to sell. Focusing on getting organized to sell your home will in turn make the move and unpacking process more efficient. There will be items you keep in your home for staging, items that get packed and stored for the move, and many items that you will not keep (aka purged). Some of these decisions will be easy and many will be hard.


Easy Decisions
There are items that will be easy to decide not to move with you. These items include expired food, receipts and paperwork that you no longer need for tax or moving purposes, broken electronics, appliances and games, old toiletries and makeup, broken and no longer used toys, craft supplies from a prior hobby, worn, stained and old towels and linens, old paint, wood, and building materials, and clothing you haven’t worn in the past year. Anything that has mold or water damage from storage in a basement, garage, or attic should also be tossed.


Middle Decisions
Much of your household stuff will fall in the middle zone. Ask yourself if you really want these items and can visualize them in your new home. These items include clothing, paperwork, kitchen items, linens, furniture, and toys. As you sort through, think about if you truly need or love the items. Also, consider if you have used them in the past year. As you go through, organize the items you are using into categories so they can be easily packed and unpacked. You will want to clearly label all boxes and bins with details of the contents and location of your home they belong.


Hard Decisions
Moving time is a great time to tackle some of the tough decisions you avoided for years. Family mementos, knickknack collections, holiday decorations, old dresses, past hobbies, costly items that you don’t use or don’t work. These items can be reconsidered and possibly don’t have a place in your new home. Making the decisions on these items now will save you stress and energy in your new place.


Getting organized to sell your home has many benefits including decluttering your home for staging, reducing the number of items you have to move, and streamlining unpacking in your new home. Write down your goals, have a plan, get help and stay focused when preparing to move. Your new, organized home will bring new adventures and new memories.