Yes, we are selling. The decision matured slowly, but when we felt ready, it happened instantly. Now we are beyond the point of no return. Tomorrow we will have a show. According to all the rules of the game, with coffee and cakes for the grownups, coke and balloons for the kids. But no home staging, since the house is full of moving boxes. Frankly, I don’t think that anyone who wants to buy our house cares about home staging. I have myself never understood the point. Everybody knows that it is staged! It looks like a picture from a glossy magazine, and nobody lives in a picture. Our house looks lived in. But perhaps there are people who fall for white sofas, tiger skins, ikebana and Buddha statues on window sills. Ours is a house with potential, as I have read in an advertisement. It is full of charm, which is why we bought it twenty-six years ago. It is a Narnia-house, with many hidden wardrobes, crooked corridors, nooks and crannies, and secret doors behind bookcases. You cannot make it better with home staging, it will merely ruin the appeal.
Instead, I am doing things that I’ve meant to do but never got round to. I feel like a conscript ordered to clean bathroom floors with a toothbrush. When did I last clean the windows in the basement? Never in twenty-six years. The shelves in the wine cellar haven’t been as shiny since before the First World War, which is about when the house was built. You can even see what colour they are. Once I stored apples in the wine cellar; then we used to have out archive there, and imagine, we have even kept wine there!
In my old country, a plumber or electrician who wanted to advertise his work would say: “I will do this as if I were doing it for myself”. I am fixing the house as I if were doing it for myself.