One of our dear blog readers who sold her home recently wrote to share a quirky home selling issue: Some of the houses she and her family toured before finally buying their next home, looked great from the outside, but once inside, they were bowled over by the home seller’s, let’s call it, extreme taste.
For example, they fell in love with the exterior of one Colonial style home the minute they parked. It had long white columns, black shutters, and it sat on a picturesque acre. Ahhhh. But upon crossing into the interior sanctum, they found themselves in a Golden Greek Temple.
The home had ancient scroll wallpaper, stonework covered in hieroglyphics, and white and gold everywhere. And even though their son was smitten by the Greek statues of naked women lining the pool, the family voted it thumbs down. It was just too hard to look past the decor, and they couldn’t see themselves happily living in a museum.
I’ve witnessed this phenomena myself: Once I entered a home and suddenly felt I had slid into a pink dream. Everything around me was various hues of rose, from the walls, carpet and curtains to the super-sized sofa, coffee table, throw rugs and pillows. It felt like my eyes were somehow unable to focus–as if washed out a gauzy film of muted color.
Yes, beauty is in the eyes of the beholder, and if the beholder is a home buyer who doesn’t share your taste, your home selling efforts are in trouble. If you want people to take your home seriously, you’ve got to make it feel anonymous so home buyers can project their own tastes onto your space.
One successful home seller I interviewed was deeply in love with Chinese art. She surrounded herself with red silks, stone lions, temple figurines and floral vases. She even hung art from her ceiling because she had ran out of wall space.
When it came time to put her home on the market, however, she knew to think of her home as “merchandise” — instead of her personal canvas for self-expression. So she took a deep breath and boxed up all her loves, knowing she’d only be apart from them temporary. And temporary it was. Her clean, uncluttered style attracted a quick buyer. In less than two months her Chinese art was up again, hanging in a new home, in a new city.
As hard as it is to believe that others might not share your love for… what ever it is you love… you’ll likely sell your house faster by toning down your unique style. Incidentally, the former home buyer who toured the Golden Greek Temple just checked to see if it was still for sale — and it is. So if you like the idea of swimming amongst naked Greek women statues, this home can still be yours.
For hundreds of other tips for selling your home faster, easier, and at the best price, check out my book, Home Selling Blues and How To Beat Them. Available in paperback or ebook through Amazon.com and at http://homesellersblues.com.