Staging is so important, especially if you are looking for a quick sale. Remember the last time you visited a new home development? How did you feel touring the model? Usually, pleasant memories come to mind about how well the home looked. That’s because it was “showcased” properly.
Home staging is not about remodeling, fixing up or making your home look sterile. Instead, it focuses on simple steps to make your home show like a model without spending a lot of money. The secret is setting the stage, which helps potential buyers imagine themselves and their families at home in your “home for sale.”
Strip Down and Build Up
The first step in staging is to clear the set. Take out extraneous furniture, decorations, pictures, etc. Take each room down to its most basic form, opening up the living space as much as possible. Then build it back up to the way you want it to look, as simple as possible, and without clutter.
Make the strip-down process simpler by stowing packed boxes in a staging area like the garage, or by renting a storage space to hold extra furnishings while your home is on the market. In essence, pack up early.
When building the set, try to make each room tell a story. Help potential buyers see themselves in each room. A clever arrangement of props will make it easy for buyers to imagine writing a letter at the desk in the kitchen, clicking on the television and enjoying a bowl of popcorn, turning on the stove and preparing a holiday repast.
Themes for a room can help you narrow down how to display it. You can, of course, stage the room as you use it now, or choose a particular motif, i.e. Southwestern, country style, international. Or you could pick an activity to illustrate on your stage, i.e., relaxed office or library, gourmet cooking, resort or vacation living. What would you like to do in that room? Place the props needed for those activities throughout the room.
Lots of lights open up a room and give it a larger appearance. If you’ve been using 50-watt bulbs, move up to 100 watts. If a large living room has only one lamp, move in another. Open curtains and add mirrors. When it’s being shown, the home should be bright. It makes your home look like it’s in center stage.
Do Your Homework
Ask what buyers are looking for in your community. What are they saying about the homes they don’t buy? And what is it about the homes that are selling that make them so popular? By determining your ideal target buyer, you will better understand how to merchandise your home. Our experience in your specific neighborhood can help you answer all these questions and more.
Almost as important as how a home looks is how it smells. Ask a close friend to walk through your home—objectively—and take a whiff here and there. Are there any offensive odors? Is it too perfumy? Too drab? Stale? Musty? Are there pet odors (which should be fixed—not covered up)? What can you do to impress potential buyers with aroma therapy?
When it comes time to sell your home, you’ll want to work with a real estate professional who knows all aspects of the selling process—including staging. Call us today to talk about how we can help you display your home to sell for the best possible price!