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How To Stage A Home For Sale The Right Way
Selling a home can be a stressful and complicated process, but it all comes down to one thing: showing the home in the best light. That means narrowing down what needs to be changed and what doesn’t. If a home is poorly staged, it can make or break a sale, especially when it comes down to its online photos. A well-staged home can decrease the time it is on the market as well as increase the sale price. There are certain house-staging dos and don’ts that will turn a no into a yes. Here are some home-staging tips that will showcase the best assets of your home and set it up for success.
Boost curb appeal
Think of all the times that a gorgeous house has caught your eye, even when you weren’t looking for one. Maybe it was the architecture, a fresh paint job, or beautifully maintained landscape. No matter what it was that caught your attention, there was something in particular that made you stop and think about that house. Certainly, a seller doesn’t want the home’s exterior to grab anyone’s attention for a negative reason. Just like with first impressions, a home’s exterior sets the precedent for how a potential buyer will feel about the rest of the home. Consider how you want people to feel as they walk through the door, and put yourself in a potential buyer’s shoes as you evaluate what needs to be modified. Take a look at how these popular recommendations may bring out the curb appeal of your home:
Power wash the exterior
Mow the lawn & trim the greenery
Plant fresh flowers
Make the house number clearly visible from the street
Paint or stain the entryway
Add potted plants around the front door
Make sure all the light fixtures and doorbells work
If there is a patio, stage it with clean and welcoming furniture
Clean the mail box or install a new one
Get rid of any trash, insects, and debris
Get Rid of Clutter
One of the most important steps of staging a home is getting rid of all the clutter. Excess “things” take attention away from a room and can make a potential buyer feel overwhelmed, and make it harder for them to visualize their own furniture in its place. In addition, eliminating clutter opens up the space and makes each room appear larger. However, it is not uncommon to leave a few essential pieces of furniture in place, so long as they are in good shape and complement the room. You will more than likely need to rent a storage space for the majority of your furniture and belongings before opening up the house for showings. When it comes to picking which pieces of furniture should remain in your home, less is more.
Personal items should be stored away while your home is on the market. Remember: your goal is to present your home in a way that people can envision living their lives there. Items such as children’s toys and keepsakes can make it difficult for potential buyers to imagine your home as their own. In addition, it is vital that any items visible to the buyers is in like-new condition. Potential buyers will look at everything in the home for signs that it has been well cared for.
No matter how clean your home looks on the surface, it will need to be deep cleaned. Some problems such as deep stains will need to be handled with professional equipment. Special attention will need to be paid to all of the surfaces of the home, such as the floors, carpets, windows, and countertops. All appliances and fixtures should look (or be) new. A prospective buyer will examine the house with all five senses. Every room in your house should look and smell fresh.
Bright rooms attract buyers. The easiest way to bring in light is to open the blinds and let the sunshine in. In rooms where windows are lacking, adding a light fixture can do wonders. Everyone appreciates a well-lit room. Swapping out light bulbs for higher wattage is a cheap way to bring out the best of a home. Don’t forget to turn all of the lights on before a house-showing.
Stage the furniture
Professional realtors will bring in special furniture to emphasize the potential of a home. Chairs are often set close to each other in order to illustrate a positive social atmosphere. Clustering furniture while leaving wide walkways makes a room look much larger. Once you have removed the clutter from your home, the next step is to set up the rest of the pieces to make the house feel warm and welcoming. If a room is boring, consider investing in a luxurious set of pillows, comforters, or table fabrics to dress-up an area.
You can’t go wrong with neutral colors throughout your home. In fact, walls that are painted in bold colors can make a room feel darker and less appealing to the average viewer. Neutral colors give the home a sophisticated look without distracting from the furniture. Neutrality is about more than just color tones. If the setup of a room or house reads as “girly” or “manly,” it can make it hard for potential buyers to imagine themselves in that home. Try to keep each room gender-neutral so that any kind of person can envision each living space as their own.
Arrange in odd numbers
Professional stagers and designers suggest staging objects in odd numbers, as they foster more intrigue than symmetrical arrangements. Place items in clusters of threes, fives, or sevens to grab people’s attention and create a more visually appealing space. For example, placing seven flowers in a pot or setting three chairs around a table can draw viewers into a space.
Utilize all rooms
Every room should have a purpose. If there’s a room in your house that is usually left open or cluttered with a variety of things, modify the space by picking one theme and building off of it. Even if you used one room for multiple activities, it will look more distinctive to the viewer if it is only staged for one thing. Analyse features that the room offers and come up with possible options to transform it into a meaningful space. For example, a storage room can be turned into an office or a guest room, depending on the size. Giving each room its own purpose will provide potential buyers with feeling like your house has endless options and opportunities to incorporate their lifestyle.
This tip is a big one: when you are packing things away in preparation to show the house, make sure that all of the clutter and personal items are out of the closets. Closet space is a big selling point for prospective home-buyers, so professional realtors will leave closets wide open to demonstrate how roomy and practical they are. If your closets are on the smaller side, you may wish to install shelves in order to maximize the useful space.
Make awkward areas unique and interesting
If there are any awkward or open spaces that aren’t being utilized, add something such as a plant, small table, shelf, or wholesome art piece. What may be viewed as an unnecessary or strange area can be turned into a designated reading spot or small work station. This is a tip that should be generalized to the rest of your home- twist any confusing feature or area into a deliberately useful and intriguing space.
Make smart purchases
Making a few key investments to your home can make all the difference when it comes time for a showing. Evaluate the appliances in your kitchen and determine whether they can be thoroughly cleaned or whether it would be better to buy new ones. The kitchen is one of the most important rooms to stage, so you’ll want to make sure all the appliances are clean and like-new. Stainless steel appliances are recommended as the most attractive and sleek option. Small tweaks can liven up a room without breaking the bank- add an attractive vase with fresh flowers to the dining table, some fluffy white towels in the bathroom, and a mirror or art piece to an empty wall. Keep accessories minimal and appealing, and consider what additions can be made that you would find attractive if you were viewing your home for the first time.
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