Guest Post by Geri Gwizdz of Signature Home Staging
If you subscribe to the “I Love Lucy” approach to closet organization – the hurry up and shove as much stuff in and slam it shut before anything falls out – it is time to rethink this lifestyle strategy. In short, it’s time to consider closet organizers and storage systems.
During the course of day-to-day living, closets do not usually rank very high on the priority list. This is especially true when the time comes to sell a home. Prospective sellers focus on what they perceive as the most important areas: the living spaces. Often, in order to help cast these areas in their most favorable and efficient light, a professional home stager is enlisted.
Interestingly, one of the first areas home-staging professionals gravitate toward during the initial home tour is the closet. Yes, the closet. And more times than not, these are cluttered, disorganized black holes of “stuff.” Bath linens are mixed in with tools and cleaning products share space with toiletries. This haphazard methodology communicates one thing: this house is too small and too high maintenance, which is why the closets look the way they do. Neatly organized closets scream (albeit subtly) that the sellers care about their homes and they take as much care of their closet as they do the interior and exterior structure and systems.
A properly organized and staged closet creates a clear illusion of more space. At a time when open floorplans are at the top of every homebuyer’s checklist, the same need to create the appearance of uncluttered, spacious closets exists. While all closets are not created equal, the principles for closet organization are the same across the board. From the smallest linen closets to oversized walk-ins, people do more than take a peek. They stand there trying to visualize how they will use the space when living there.
As a general rule of thumb, no one should ever be embarrassed to have someone else look in their closets, whether they are selling or living in the home. If you don’t feel comfortable having people go into your closets, then they won’t pass a home-staging professional’s litmus test. The same organization and storage principles for closets also applies to vanities and cabinets.
Remember, no two closets are ever the same. As such, all closet organization efforts should have custom storage solutions, based on each residents’ needs and usage habits. For the DIY person, take the time to dust, wipe down, vacuum and maybe even paint the inside of the closet. There is no substitute for white paint and white liner. Also, think about adding a mountable light and shoe racks, where appropriate.
DIY, however, does have its limitations. Investing in a professional-grade organization and storage system is truly the best solution and more economical than one might think. Professional closet organizers, like home staging professionals, are creative in their approach and begin with one common objective: purge, purge, purge. From going through each article of clothing to sorting through items, they know the tricks of the trade and can apply them to the most appropriate situation. They work with the homeowner to achieve closet nirvana.
Organized closets have become more than just the latest home-trend fad. They are a high priority on the home-selling to-do list. Organized closets also should be a focal point for in-place homeowners as well. Why not enjoy the fruits of an organized closet now, even though selling is not on the horizon? Paying attention to the smallest of details today – your closet organization – will have day-to-day and long-term, far-reaching results tomorrow.
Geri Gwizdz is president of Signature Home Staging, LLC, a New Jersey-based staging and redesign firm serving a wide range of residential and commercial clients throughout the New York metropolitan area and beyond. Known for her creativity, customized property presentation solutions and personal touch, Geri is an accredited staging professional and formerly served as a design, window treatment and color consultant for one of North Jersey’s leading design centers. For more information, visit the Signature Home Staging website.