De-cluttering is currently all the rage thanks to neat-freak Marie Kondo who somehow got us all to embrace housework through her best-seller The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up. Not only does a spacious, tidy home feel better, it’s also a top priority if you’re selling.
“Messiness due to a lack of storage in homes is a massive concern these days,” says senior manager Anouska Linz from State Custodians Homes Loans. “One of the first items potential buyers look for when viewing bedrooms is wardrobes. And in the kitchen buyers want to see lots of cupboards and good bench top space. Having adequate storage really helps create more value for those looking to purchase - it’s definitely a key item on buyers’ checklists.”
If you’re planning to sell your home, get your storage sorted out now. It could significantly increase your home’s selling price depending on the inclusions. Or even if you’re firmly staying put, it’s still a good idea to tidy up, right?
Whatever your situation, get organised with these hints and trends.
Tip 1. Invest in built-in wardrobes
Bedrooms with built in robes, which you can also stack baskets onto, will always have buyer appeal and make life a lot easier. Real estate agent Ben Ayers, from Raine and Horne Marrickville says built-in robes are particularly appealing to property investors.
“There’s a possibility an investor would pay a couple of thousand more as it’d make the property more turnkey,” says Ben. “The investor could advertise the property for rent a few weeks before settlement and have a tenant lined up to move in on the settlement day therefore reducing the vacancy rate. It’s also less work for the purchaser – they don’t have to organise quotes and installation of new built-ins.”
Tip 2. Add an extra bedroom
People are increasing looking for homes with an extra bedroom which can be used as a combined study, guest room or storage area. In general, adding an extra room can bump up your sale price by about $100,000 if you are in a major city. “Attic spaces have become very popular, for both storage and as a spare sleeping area,” says Ben. “This can increase the asking price by up to $50,000.
Tip 3. Embrace cabinets
Good cabinets are enough to make a house hunter weep with joy. Built in hallway cupboards for bulky vacuum cleaners, brooms and mops are a godsend. Or else make a statement with a free-standing item such as a beautiful wooden cabinet. You can also get super skinny wall mounted cabinets which you can hang anywhere there’s a scrap of space.
Tip 4. Organise wall shelving
It’s true that large built in shelving units can look stylish. However just a few mounted here and there can also look chic. You can also mount a shelf extra high near the ceiling so most of the wall is still bare.
Tip 5. Install kitchen cupboards
An updated kitchen with a good range of kitchen cupboards and drawers can definitely up your asking price. “In a high-end home a new kitchen could cost $50,000 by the time you incorporate benchtops and appliances, which could increase the sale price significantly,” says Ben. “If it’s a two-bedroom red brick apartment you could get away with a $5000 Ikea kitchen. I estimate a modernised kitchen with storage will add up to an average of $20,000 across the board to a sale price.”
Tip 6. Choose a hard-working sideboard
Utilise hallway or dining space by investing in a beautiful side board table with drawers. In a hall way it’ll be super handy for things like hats, scarves and gloves which people tend to peel off the second they get inside, and in a dining room it’s a great spot for kitchen linens.
Tip 7. Hide it under the bed
Beds on a high frame are ideal for stashing stuff underneath. Just get an inexpensive bed skirt and no one will even know there’s anything under there! You can store eight or nine 30 litre plastic tubs under a queen-sized bed. Or else there are boxes which are specifically made for under bed storage. It may not be great feng shui, but do you want a tidy place or not?
Tip 8. Make your furniture work over time
Any piece of furniture that can do double storage duty is a star. So think a bed with built in shelving, a couch with interior storage units, or an ottoman with a lid. One piece of furniture which sometimes gets overlooked for storage potential is the coffee table. Look for ones with drawers or a flat shelf underneath which is handy for magazines, baskets etc.
Tip 9. Stash stuff with decorative baskets
Sometimes you’re just ... a mess. That’s when you need baskets – for all the clothes you can’t be bothered putting away or all the kids’ toys that are driving you insane. Decorative baskets are a hot on-trend item at the moment. Baskets made from raw textures such as rattan, jute or hemp are currently popular.
Tip 10. All hail things with lids
Still need to hide a multitude of sins? Then get storage items with lids. You can get gorgeous lidded baskets which look fantastic stacked against a wall. Or else check out pretty cardboard boxes from bargain dollar shops. You could even get a few vintage suitcases for an arty look.