Putting your house on the market is a major decision. It is important to do everything you possibly can before you go on the market in order to get top dollar for your house. Staging your home is a great way to show off its true value. The idea is to make your home inviting and allow buyers to visualize themselves there. Here are 10 tips for staging your home to sell.
1. Spruce Up Curb Appeal
When potential buyers come to look at your house, the very first thing they will see is the exterior when they drive up. Your curb appeal sets up buyers’ first impressions, and first impressions go a very long way. You don’t have to call excavators and professionals to achieve good curb appeal. Turn it into a weekend project: power wash the exterior to get rid of dirt and grim, pull out the weeds, trim branches, clean out the gutters, add mulch, update any light fixtures, and paint the shutters and trim.
2. Get Rid of Clutter
Before you put your house up for sale, go through it room by room and clear out all the clutter. You want your house to look open and spacious. Organize everything into 4 categories: stage it, store it, sell it, and toss it. Rent a storage unit to keep items you want but won’t use for a couple months. Have a big yard sale and try to make a little money off your old treasures. Donate everything you don’t sell. Take a garbage bag through each room and toss out anything that is broken. Finally, keep anything that can be used for staging the home. Don’t overlook old pieces of furniture! A coat of paint goes a long way.
When staging your home, it is important to make it so potential buyers can visualize their belongings in the space. Pack up all personal items like family photos, trophies, and any items that potentially can be offensive to buyers. Be sure to paint over bold-colored walls that are taste-specific with a neutral color. Your house has to be a blank canvas.
4. Keep it Clean
Keeping a house clean while it is on the market is nearly impossible, but it is very important. You don’t want potential buyers to come in and immediately be greeted by odors and dirt. Call in a professional cleaning service to do a deep clean of the entire house and then take 20-30 minutes a day to maintain it.
5. Finish Unfinished Projects
You know those little DIY handy projects you’ve been putting off for months? Now is the time to finish them. Fill in missing floorboards, replace broken doorknobs, fill in any cracks in the walls, and fix the broken doorbell. Generally, you can finish these types of projects for little money and buyers won’t be turned-off by the idea of having to do them themselves.
6. Update Hardware & Fixtures
If you haven’t updated any of the hardware or fixtures since the 90s, chances are you’re sporting the shiny brass look. These are so easily overlooked. Shiny brass fixtures automatically give your house a dated look and feel. Mix that with orangey oak cabinets and it’s the kiss of death. Time to upgrade! Depending on the rest of your décor, switching out faucets, doorknobs, light fixtures and cabinet pulls to satin/brushed nickel or oil-rubbed bronze will make a huge difference. Be consistent—using the same finish adds uniformity to the house.
7. Paint, Paint, Paint
Paint is another thing that can make a world of difference when staging your home to sell. Just because you love the blood red dining room doesn’t mean everyone else will. Remember, you want buyers to be able to visualize themselves in the space. It’s time to get rid of the taste-specific colors. Go with neutrals, and by neutral, I don’t mean beige. Neutral can be different shades of tans, browns and yellows along with light blues and greens. These days, most people are turned off by all white walls or the same color in every room. There is nothing wrong with adding a little punch of color, just keep it in check.
8. Keep it Light and Bright
Addressing the lighting situation is also a must when staging your home. You want every room to appear to be open and bright. Create ambiance by utilizing overhead lighting, table lamps and accent lights. Also make sure you allow in as much natural light as possible. Remember when I said to take down all family photos? Replace a few with some mirrors! Mirrors are a great way to bounce light around a room and make it brighter while also adding some décor to the walls. Don’t forget to light up the outside as well.
9. Create Good Flow
Furniture placement is what most people think of when they hear “stage your home” from their realtor. Well, we’ve finally arrived to this step. Make sure the furniture is the right size for each space and don’t clutter a room with furniture. With light, more is better, with furniture, less is more. Only keep the essentials.
For bedrooms, include a bed, dresser, and nightstands. In the living room, create a cozy space by placing a couch and a couple armchairs around a coffee table or by a fireplace. If you have a large enough space, try to keep the furniture off the walls. You want buyers to be able to walk around freely and move easily from room to room.
10. Use the Right Accessories
Now that you’ve de-cluttered, depersonalized, cleaned, painted, upgraded, and rearranged, it’s time to add a few accessories. Appropriate accessories include towels, bedding, accent pillows, candles, plants/flowers, area rugs, and artwork – all used moderately. Put a few candles on the mantel, use a vase of flowers as a table centerpiece, set out clean towels in the bathroom, and place a couple accent pillows on the couch.
That’s it. You’re done.
Staging your home is something you can invest little or lots of money in. It all depends on your situation and the condition of your house. Of course there are so many more things you can do to spruce up your home, but these are some basics that will get anyone started. Don’t underestimate staging. Think of it this way – if you were the buyer, what would you rather see: a clean, inviting, clutter-free home that smells fresh and looks bright? Or a dirty, over-stuffed home that smells like cats and makes you want to run for the hills?
“Like” us on Facebook!
A Cypress Homes, Inc. Blog
This post was written by Greg Drusch