Staging your home prior to showing it increases the likelihood of a sale, even in a buyers’ market. It reduces the time the home spends on the market, helps to justify the asking price and it can also prepare you to the move, because a big part of home staging is organizing and decluttering.
Whether you do it by yourself or hire a professional, here are a few simple home staging tips. These are basic tips – in a buyers’ market you may need to go through more trouble, including some basic remodeling.
1. The most important home staging tip is “look at your house through the eyes of a potential buyer.” Your beloved knick knacks will be no more than clutter to a buyer. A little grime in the bathroom? HUGE turnoff for a buyer. And that red dining room wall that you love so much? Remember that most buyers prefer neytral colors.
2. The exterior of the house needs to be staged too. This includes painting if needed, mowing the lawn, and in general making sure the house has great curb appeal.
3. Entryway needs to be open, well lighted and free of clutter. A simple way to immediately transform your entryway is to replace the worn welcome mat!
4. Clear the living room and dining room of family photos and personal items. These convey a message of “I live here, you don’t” – but you want buyers to be able to imagine themselves living in the house. If the room is too crowded, move some of the furniture into the garage. You want it to look spacious and inviting.
5. The kitchen and the bathrooms absolutely have to sparkle. Any hint of dirt or grime in these rooms is a huge – HUGE – turnoff. Make sure counters are completely bare except for a few decorative items. Place al personal items in drawers and place fresh plush towels and flowers on counters. If your bathroom fixtures are outdated, replace them with sleek and modern fixtures
6. To make bedrooms appear spacious and comfortable, remove any furniture that clutters the room and most personal items such as photos and knick knacks; remove at least half of your clothes from the closets and pack them (you’ll need to do this soon anyway!) and make sure the bed is perfectly made with high-quality linens.
Generally, when staging a home, you need to keep these words in mind: VERY clean, uncluttered, well lighted, spacious and comfortable. If you can manage to do this in every room of the house, your chances of selling it quickly, for the asking price or more, will be significantly higher.