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  • Writer's pictureBoston Modern

How to Live in a Staged Home

Your home is on the market, pristine and expertly staged to get it sold. Now what? How do you still live in your home and keep it in perfect condition - especially for the unexpected showing?

You just listed your home on the market and invested into professional staging in order to get it sold quickly and for top dollar. But now what? How do you still live in the home while keeping it in pristine condition?

Laura McHolm of NorthStar Moving Company says "First and foremost, you have to change your mindset; it is not "your home" anymore. Treat the house as if it were a five-star hotel; you need to maintain the staged look and keep everything spotless."

It should never actually appear as if people are living in the home. Be sure to never leave any dishes out, store away all family photos or any personal belongings. Your potential buyer should be able to envision themselves living in the home.

How are you supposed to eat, sleep and live in your home without leaving any mess behind? Here are a few helpful tips from HuffPost:


  • Remove appliances from counters and keep them clean and hidden at all times.

  • Keep one set of cups, plates, bowls and utensils neatly stored inside a cabinet. Be sure to wash them after every use! Never leave dirty dishes in the sink or out in a dish rack.

  • Whenever possible, use paper plates and plastic utensils to limit dishwashing.

  • Keep only essentials in the refrigerator and pantry.


  • Do not keep any personal care products out. Everything (soap, shampoo, lotion, toothbrush, etc.) should be stored away in a closed cabinet after each use! Think college dorm living all over again.

  • Keep antibacterial wipes under the sink for quick and easy cleanup each time you use the sink and shower.

  • Use stick-on toilet cleaners inside the bowls to keep toilets clean and smelling fresh.

  • Keep all towels out of site and neatly organized. Only guest towels should be on display.


  • Don't leave any personal items on top of nightstands or dressers. Store them in plastic containers that can fit under your bed.

  • Make your bed each morning! If a last minute showing is scheduled, it's one less thing you'll have to worry about.

  • Keep all clothing neatly stored / folded, and laundry baskets hidden in the closet.

  • Wash and put away laundry on a daily basis if possible.

Living Room:

  • Keep daily-used items (remote controls, DVDs, video games, children's toys, etc.) hidden away in drawers, baskets, ottomans or other storage containers.

  • Recycle all old newspapers or magazines.

  • Be sure all throw pillows are properly set up each night, and fold all throw blankets.

Eating & Entertainment:

  • Try to limit your take-out meals. You want your home to smell like fresh flowers, not old Chinese food!

  • Find weekly deals at your local restaurants and go out to eat whenever possible.

  • Make a list of activities to do on days of scheduled showings. Some ideas can include bowling, going to the beach, zoo, a mall, museums, amusement parks, or even visiting family or friends.


  • Unfortunately, pets are not staged-home friendly. It may be best to find a temporary place for your furry friend to stay while your home is staged, such as a relative or friends house, or a kennel-free boarding "resort".

  • If they must stay in your home, designate 1-2 rooms for them to live in. This will help keep fur cleanup to a minimum.

Living in a staged home may present some difficulties, but if your family can adjust your routine a tiny bit, it can be very beneficial in the end! Take the opportunity to go out, explore and do things you never had the time or energy to do before.

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