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Some homes just seem like they were built for families. Set in vibrant, young neighborhoods, these perpetually welcoming houses are identifiable by their comforting sunlit interiors and lively backyards. Oddly, they never seem quite right without a small herd of children nearby.

But all children do eventually grow up and often move away from their family homes. In their absence, parents are left to decide whether to keep the empty nest or put it on the market for other, younger families. If they choose the latter option, these homeowners need to keep their audience in mind by considering what families are looking for in a potential home and planning ahead appropriately.

Clean and perform basic repairs.

The last thing that a family with a two-year-old wants is to wonder how they’re going to fix a dripping faucet or get the lingering dirt and mildew out from under the baseboard. The repairs in question may not be significant, or even require that much time – but taking the time to relieve even a little of a family’s burden will go a long way. Moreover, parents are drawn to clean interiors; not only are spotless spaces lovely to look at, but they pose no danger to an adventurous child who might otherwise manage to cover himself in dust.

Think about the neighborhood.

Is a community playground nearby? How well-rated is the school district? Where is the nearest pediatrician’s office? Families will prize a good school district over nice appliances, so make sure to highlight any draws in the neighborhood when marketing a family home.

Arrange the house and yard thoughtfully.

Selling a home entails more than hawking large windows and an expansive yard. While families take the aesthetics of a home into account, they care more about the narrative the house represents. In buyer’s minds, the low table across the open kitchen becomes an ideal spot for children to finish homework while their parents finish preparing dinner, while the backyard hammock visible from the living room window takes on the promise of lazy summer afternoons.

Make the house look approachable by giving a thought to the furniture and lighting within its space. Potential families will find it easier to imagine themselves living at the house if it already feels welcoming and cozy.

Highlight practical features.

Stressed parents may not be impressed by a delicately curved window frame, but they will love the spacious storage cabinet in the playroom. Or, maybe you have a secure and attractive fence in the backyard that could come in handy for parents with adventurous toddlers. Mention it! Sellers benefit from giving their home a once-over and considering which attributes would be of practical benefit to parents.

Selling a house is never easy, especially if the property in question was a family home. But with the right preparation and thought, a caring homeowner can find the house a new family who will bring just as much life and love into the space as they themselves once did.