Selling your home can seem like a daunting exercise but there’s no reason for concern! You want your house to sell quickly – that’s a given – and with these home staging tips, getting your house back off the market will be a breeze. Don’t worry – home staging doesn’t have to break the bank. This list is compiled with a range of tips for all budgets. With just a little bit of attention to styling and upgrading, your house will be sold in no time!
First Impressions First
Even before potential buyers enter your house, they’re already forming their opinions. Some buyers even drive by to see it before the open house or viewing. That means that your curb appeal needs to be doing the selling right from the beginning. Boosting your house’s curb appeal should be one of your top priorities. It may be as simple as raking up leaves, power washing siding, driveways and walkways, or landscaping with fresh flowers and other greenery. To add extra touches that make lasting impressions, think about adding solar lights along paths and well-placed spotlights. Don’t forget about simple things like mowing the lawn, and make sure it’s green!
Once the visitors have made it past the curb appeal, the next thing to greet them is your porch. Even if it is nothing more than just a couple steps, it needs to feel warm and welcoming. Welcome potential buyers into your house with a clean doormat, some potted plants and perhaps a piece of clean furniture (space allowing). If you’re having viewings in the evening – or just in case of those drive-by buyers – keep the porch light on to greet them.
Bathrooms and Kitchens
While the overall house will matter, the bathrooms and kitchens are the biggest selling points for people. Put your best foot forward by focussing on these rooms, especially if you have budget to spend. Take a careful look to see what can be updated or replaced. If possible, replace old faucets, cabinets, lights, etc. At the very least, give them a good cleaning and make them shine like new. Also consider just replacing the fronts – putting new doors on the cabinets rather than replacing everything, for example – and painting the rest to match.
Make your bathroom feel luxurious. Create a spa-like atmosphere with special accessories and décor like candles, pretty bowls and baskets, and rolled-up towels.
Once you’ve got the bathrooms and kitchen ready to go, it’s time to turn an eye to the rest of the house. Everything needs to be sparkling and gorgeous. You might consider even hiring professional cleaners to get every nook and cranny. Don’t forget the tiny details – every inch of counters, grout, windows and flooring needs to be looking good as new.
No matter the size of your house, it needs to seem as spacious as possible. People don’t want to buy a cramped, over-crowded house. To make space, clear out anything you can live without, including all clutter and cumbersome furniture. You may need to rent a storage space, or find a nice friend to keep things safe for you, but it will all be well worth it when your house sells!
There are lots of tricks for making a small space seem bigger. You’re already going to need to repaint every room in neutral colors, as discussed next, which will lighten up the walls. Another great trick is to grab some mirrors in all shapes and sizes. A well-placed mirror can make a room look larger by adding extra light, especially when placed opposite windows. Experiment with different mirrors to find just the right one for the space.
As stated above, you’ll probably want to repaint your walls. However, this is not the time to experiment with big, bright, bold colors. Staging works best with rich earthy neutrals and warm tans, greys and beiges. Having your house redecorated in this sophisticated palette will help buyers envision their own decorative touches but also widen the house’s appeal to a larger market. Bonus tip: painting adjacent rooms the same color can help tie the rooms together, creating a sense of flow, but also make the rooms appear larger.
Buyers in a modern market want to see eco-friendly – and budget-friendly – features throughout the house. Some are easier than others, like replacing the weather stripping around doors and windows. Depending on your budget, you may want to look into upgrading to Energy Star appliances, low-flow shower heads and other hot ticket items that will give a great bang for your buck.
People don’t want to live in a dark, empty house. Opening up all of the curtains and adding more light sources will not only make everything look more spacious, it will bring in that light and warmth that people want to see in a new home.
We’ve already discussed the need to de-clutter and create as much open space as possible. While this is absolutely true, you still want your house to have touches of life. Little touches around the house will help people envision themselves and their family living there. You don’t want anything too personal or unique, but instead small items that people could relate to – vases of fresh flowers, bowls of fruit, throw blankets across the sofa or end of the bed, etc. Signs that life thrives in the house.
Don’t Abandon Your Dining Room
In between meals, the dining room can look empty and uninviting, aka unsellable. Keep the table styled so it’s not completely bare. An especially chic ide would be to arrange a series of smaller items (three is best) in the center or down the length of the table rather than one overbearing arrangement.
Reevaluate Your Floors
After you’ve done the deep clean, check out the state of your flooring. Are they still in pristine condition? Or have they become worn out from use and time? Consider refinishing any hardwood or replacing carpets as necessary. If nothing else, strategically placed area rugs can refresh the room and save your sale.
Space, space, space. So many of our tips come down to creating space. People want places where they can grow, places with enough room for all their belongings but also a nice flow of traffic. Rearranging furniture to create pairs and symmetrical conversation areas will show potential buyers exactly what potential each room has.
It’s Business, Not Personal
Remember, your personal style is not what’s for sale. When staging your home, it’s important to remember that not everyone will have the same taste or style as you. You want to keep your décor easy and accessible to sell the overall package. Replace personal pictures with generic artwork so other people can imagine themselves doing the same. This is especially true for the master bedroom – keep it clean and clutter-free, mostly bare of personal items, and something that can appeal to most people.
Clean out your closets. It may sound silly, but potential buyers will probably go peeking at the storage space. Removing as much as possible before they get there, even if it means storing away some clothes and other items elsewhere, will be worth it. You want to show everything organized and spacious, to show your visitors that they can make that space work for themselves.
Do you have that spare bedroom where you sneak away things to store out of sight? This could hurt your home staging. Buyers don’t want to see useless space – you need to show them possibilities. Redistribute or borrow some items to create an office or guest room to hook in those buyers. Along that track, you’ll also want to show the purpose for any awkward spaces. If you’ve got a room under the stairs or a space under the window, people will want to see that they won’t go to waste. Show them stylishly in use and potential buyers will be impressed.
Pets may be beloved members of your family, but that won’t be true for everyone. When selling your home, you need to be extra diligent about cleaning up any pet-related messes, including vacuuming up hair and getting rid of smells. Deodorizers will be your best friend until the house sells!
Don’t Forget the Outside
You’re not just selling the front and inside of your house. Buyers will check out every aspect of the property, since they’re buying everything. That means that everything needs to be staged to show a great lifestyle. Add café table and a couple of chairs on your balcony to show a beautiful breakfast spot. Show the potential for summer fun in the backyard with tables and seating on the deck and a cleaned up, ready to go pool. Landscape and mow your backyard, with a cozy hammock hanging.
As you can see, there are many things you can consider when staging your house for a quick sale. While it may seem overwhelming now, you’ll find that even just some small changes can make a huge difference. With these tips, your house is sure to be off the market in no time!