Home Staging: How to host a proper Thanksgiving feast… without your house’s marketability suffering

by Kasia McDaniel

Your house is on the market and it’s the Thanksgiving holidays. If you’ve done some cleanup and packed up some things already, you may be wondering where you put the things you need. Chances are your platters and good dishes may be packed, but you can still have a proper Thanksgiving feast while your house is on the market. If hosting dinner at your house is a must, here are some tips to keep you sane when guests and buyers are swirling around.

1. Contact your real estate agent: We all know Thanksgiving Thursday is off limits, but perhaps allow some showings for Friday or Saturday. Buyers may be staying in the area visiting their friends, and this is a great time for them to see your home.

2. Let houseguests stay in a nearby hotel: You don’t need to stress your guests about being clean and tidy just because you have a showing. Explain to guests there might be some showings during this weekend. Take the opportunity to show them around town if you do happen to have a showing.

3. Limit the menu to perhaps six or seven items and have lots of these dishes: Sometimes, having lots of turkey and gravy is better than having 12 or 13 items that will only be half-eaten. And while we all enjoy fresh-baked pies in our own oven, turn to your local bakery and select ready-made pies that were baked in their oven. This avoids any potential burned smells that tend to linger in a home longer than we want.

4. Have guests bring a dish to share: If guests are local, they can bring a prepared dish to share. This way, you don’t have to go digging for that deep bowl to hold all the cranberry sauce. Then ask them to bring empty Tupperware to the dinner so they can take leftovers back to their house.

5. Cater your meal: Some local stores and restaurants have prepared meals for Thanksgiving so you don’t have to do the cooking. All you have to do is heat up the food and serve it. Cleanup will be even faster with this option!

6. Plastic fancy dinnerware: As mentioned before, your fancy dishes and silverware may already be packed away. If that is the case, consider using plastic fancy plates and utensils. Some even look like real silver. They can then be thrown out instead of running the dishwasher over and over again to wash everything.

7. Set a buffet table: If you have a kitchen island, you can set out each dish on it and have everyone walk through like a buffet line. Your guests can then sit at the dining table without having to pass every dish around the table. A buffet table can prevent spills and allows everyone to get up and get seconds (or thirds!) as needed.

By simplifying a Thanksgiving meal with these tips, you will be less stressed while your house is on the market. You have enough to worry about when selling your home. Don’t let something like a Thanksgiving meal limit your enjoyment of time with family and friends.

Kasia McDaniel, a Home Stager and Certified Interior Decorator at Blue Diamond Staging can be reached at 910-745-0608 or by visiting www.bluediamondstaging.com