DC and the surrounding area has a unique obstacle when it comes to selling a house, politics. Your clients may work in it, for a lobbying firm or a non-profit and have their sites set.  From yard and window signs to photos on their walls, this may be why they came to the area, but those same things that encourage them may also hurt your ability to sell their property to home buyers and investors buying a property for a fix and flip.

Here are four common occurrences of political displays and ways to talk to your clients about removing them to help not turn away potential buyers.

Be Honest

The first thing you should do is have a conversation with your buyer about how their signs may affect their house’s ability to sell. Let them know that even though they have an opinion, and it is valid, buyers after mid-term elections or any other time of the year could come from a different party. Their associations can create a negative feel for the space from the minute a potential buyer steps in the door. By removing it you’ll be able to show the property as soon as there is interest and create an apolitical space.

Give a Warning and Temporarily Stow Them Away

If permanent removal is not an option, settle for something different.  Create a checklist of the glaring or at least most recent political signing and displays and have a box set aside. When you are ready to show a property, have your seller use the checklist to place photo frames in a drawer, put signs in a box or behind a window curtain and to send a text once everything is away. This way you’ll know when it’s safe to walk a potential buyer through the home and when your client can move the signage and displays back to their original places.

Wall Photos and Memorabilia

Working on political campaigns and meeting past figureheads from presidents to congresspeople, or even foreign dignitaries is an incredible experience.  However, leaders have friends and they have enemies and you don’t know how foreign policy or other interactions impacted the potential buyer. DC is full of diversity so it’s important to keep this in mind.

Walk the property with the seller and take a note on how many photos are on the walls and the sizes of the frames. Then go to a convenience store, a craft shop or somewhere with inexpensive photo frames and art and replace them until the house is sold.  Even if it isn’t a photo of the seller or their family, the buyer doesn’t need to know, they just want to see the space, not what causes the seller supports.

Political Bumper Stickers

If the unit has a garage and there are bumper stickers on the car, you’ll want to talk to your client about keeping these hidden from potential buyers.  Regardless if they are about pets, family, funny, religious or political, these can be turn-offs to a potential buyer. An easy fix is making sure the back of the car with the bumper sticker is facing the far side or the wall. It lets the buyer see what the space is like with the vehicle and prevents them from being offended or turned off.

DC and politics go hand-in-hand, but offending buyers is just bad business. By using the tips above you may be able to help encourage your client to remove it, at least until their property sells.