Staging your home provides many positive aspects to the selling process. First, staging before the photographer shows up provides excellent pictures for the listing. Second, it provides a positive experience for the buyer and the agent. Third, staged homes sell faster and many times a buyer may increase the offer if the home is staged correctly.
Staging your home to sell doesn’t need to cost a lot. Most of the staging involves elbow grease and rearranging.
Clean and Declutter
This isn’t just dusting, vacuuming, and wiping off counters. This is really cleaning. Wiping the walls and doors; cleaning the tubs and sinks; cleaning the inside and outside of appliances, especially the ones that are staying in the home; cleaning the fireplace; cleaning the windows and so on.
If you don’t want to do the cleaning yourself, spend a few hundred dollars and get a professional team to do it. If the home isn’t clean or it has unpleasant smells, buyers will be turned off and will walk away.
Decluttering is just as important. Buyers shouldn’t be distracted by stuff laying around or sitting on counters and tables. The buyer wants to see the basic bones of the home, not the stuff in it.
This includes closets. Neatly organize the closets. This is a good time to clean out your clothes and shoes and donate them to charity.
Depersonalize the Home
Packing away some of your personal items and pictures is one of the simplest things you can do to sell your home. Depersonalizing the home allows the buyer to see themselves in the home by visualizing their personal items in the home.
This can be difficult since we are attached to our stuff but if you want to sell quickly and easily, pack it away.
In addition, depersonalizing the home before the photographer arrives keeps your personal items from being in the pictures when posted on the MLS. You and your family will be safer with less personal pictures on the internet.
Cleaning, decluttering and removing personal items are all important but you need to strike a balance so your home still has that lived in look. You don’t want to make it too sparse. Things like a vase of flowers, a book on a table, or a basket of fruit on the counter will give it that lived in look without being cluttered or too personal.
A Distinct Purpose to Every Room
Stage the home so it’s obvious to the buyer what each room is used for. A bedroom should be a bedroom not an extra storage room. The family room should not have bikes, boxes, or miscellaneous stuff crammed in it.
Touring builders’ models can provide a great picture of how a room should be staged. Builders are experts at staging their products for prospective buyers.
Open the blinds or drapes and let the sunshine in! Light and airy rooms are more appealing than dark cramp spaces so lighten up as much as you can. This is absolutely necessary when the photographer shows up. Natural light helps to give the room that light and airy feeling.
This can also expose any flaws in the room, so look around carefully and see if you can minimize any flaws you see.
Don’t Forget the Outside
Curb appeal is just as important at cleaning and decluttering. This is the first impression buyers have of your home. Many buyers drive by before deciding if they want to tour the inside. If they don’t like what they see, they move on to another home.
Weed, mow the lawn, clean up clutter and debris and make sure the house number is easily visible.
Look at the Details
Don’t forget the small details. Do you have a robe hanging on the back of the bathroom door? Is it a nice fluffy one or is a little shabby looking? Look around the bathroom and try to see it through the eyes of a buyer. Do you still have too much stuff on the counter or around the tub/shower? Is the stuff clean?
Look at places where you have electronics. Are the cords/wires hanging out all over the place? Try to visualize the room as a photographer and see if there are things laying around that may show up the pictures. Do you have a pair of slippers sitting next to your bed? Should they be in the picture?
Walk around both the inside and outside of your home and try to see it through the eyes of a buyer or the photographer. Do you see small things that can easily be fixed or moved?
The goal is to have the buyer view your home as their future home. Staging your home to sell will achieve this goal.