Staging for Success
One of the most important things to think about when selling your home is staging. Staging is when a home is prepared for sale by cleaning, performing maintenance, and decorating with a very neutral palette. You want your home to stand out in the crowd because, remember, the goal is to sell your home in the shortest amount of time and to receive an offer at or above your asking price. Here are some tips to help you achieve a smooth and successful sale.
Pay Attention to Details
The first and general rule to follow is: Less is more. Just think about those model homes you’ve visited or read about in magazines and try your best to emulate that. It’s usually easier to sell a vacant home that is staged than a house that feels totally lived in so you’ll want to reduce what you have displayed in your home, wherever possible.
Also, take a walk through every room and closet in your house, as well as a check of the outside areas, and make a list of things you would notice and consider a negative if you were a prospective buyer. In many cases, the fix could be something that costs nothing – or next to nothing – to improve.
Generic & Clutter-free
Another important staging tip is to declutter because, when a buyer walks through your home, they will be looking at it from their perspective. Can I live here? Do I like everything about this house? By depersonalizing and decluttering your home, it makes this vision easier for a prospective buyer to see. Removing personal items like pictures, trophies, and nicknacks go a long way to accomplishing this. Ideally, the house will be empty except for items left behind specifically for “show” like a few pieces updated furnishings, appliances, and decor.
Sight, Smell, Touch, Hear
In addition to decluttering, presenting an immaculately clean home is a top priority. Take a walk around your house and take note of what you can see, smell, touch, and hear. Showing a clean home is critical and is one of the most important things a home needs to be marketable because it gives the impression that a home is well-maintained. Whenever possible, hire a professional to make your home sparkle.
The ultimate goal for your home is to make it appear as move-in ready as you possibly can. Walk up to your house from the street or driveway and tour your home as if you were a prospective buyer. Are there any rooms with dated wallpaper or flaking paint? Would spending a few dollars to replace old window coverings or a shower curtain make a difference? And then ask yourself: Would you buy your house for the asking price?
Listen to Professionals
This short video will also give you a good idea of some things you could do to successfully stage your home.
Use a Checklist
Lastly, here is a handy staging checklist that never fails!
▢ The grass is cut, edged and looks healthy.
▢ Remove all dead plants and trim the hedges and bushes.
▢ Simple flowers and local plants are placed on patios and porches.
▢ The house structure is cleaned or power-washed.
▢ Toys, water hoses, pet accessories, pet waste, and yard decorations are all cleaned up and put away.
▢ Backyard and lanai areas are “lightly staged” with chairs, plants, rugs under seating areas, and a patio table.
▢ Swimming pool, hot tub, deck, patio or lanai is clean.
▢ Major projects are completed including fresh stain or paint where needed, repaired broken floor and baseboards, secure loose railings or banisters, exterior light fixtures updated or cleaned, sheds or garage organized and cleaned. Landscaping projects are all finished and all cracks in driveways or pathways have been filled.
▢ The whole house looks and smells clean and is clutter-free.
▢ Personal items and photographs are put away.
▢ The kitchen is completely clean and small appliances, dishes and other countertop items (in both the kitchen and bathroom) are put away.
▢ Personal hygienic items are not left on vanity counters.
▢ Fresh or realistic artificial plants or flowers are placed throughout the home to bring freshness where needed.
▢ Themes and prominent styles in the home are minimized so it appeals to all buyers. For example, a Hawaiian or tropical themed home should be made more neutral.
▢ Other projects are completed including replacing dated fixtures, wallpaper, window coverings, faucets, and general household repairs.