Staging Your Home to Sell NOW!

First impressions are important so you want to emphasize your home’s best features when your house goes on the market. In a recent Real Estate Staging Association study, it was found that homes staged prior to being listed spent 90% less time on the market than those homes not staged. Staging is nothing more than making your home inviting to the largest number of potential buyers possible. While there are professional home staging companies, the process can be as simple as rearranging what you have and doing some serious cleaning along the way.

Declutter - A decluttered home is calm and inviting.

· If something is out, it should have its own space

· All toys should be put away

· Clear kitchen counters so the room appears crisp and clean

· Pack all but minimal glassware, flatware, dishes, and cooking items so cabinets appear spacious

· Empty out the pantry a bit

· Remove a good 1/3 of possessions in every room, including what is IN closets

· Get rid of empty hangers that are taking up space in closets

· Clear bathroom counters and/or sink tops

· Remove extra furniture throughout the house

· Remove pet beds and toys (and pets, as possible, during showings)

· Pack extra things into tubs and neatly store in the garage or, preferably, a storage unit

Depersonalize - Buyers need to be able to visualize themselves in the house as they walk through, not feel like they are invading your personal space

· Stash personal items such as memorabilia and keepsakes

· Minimize or put away family pictures

· All jewelry should be safely out of sight

· All personal products in the bathrooms should be stored away

Clean – Strike a balance between clean and lived-in

· Scrub appliances, inside and out (and consider replacing them if they are outdated)

· Clean kitchen and bathroom cupboards, inside and out

· Remove and replace any moldy caulk in the bathrooms or kitchen

· Scrub wall grime in showers and tubs

· Remove odors by using air fresheners; many suggest fresh baked cookies are the way to go for open houses and/or showings

· Clean and tidy the entryway (first impressions!)

· Fireplaces should be cleaned and staged

· Dust all ceiling fans

· Floors should be cleaned and undamaged

· Clean and organize the garage

· Hire a professional cleaning crew and carpet cleaners – this is a minimal expense that yields amazing results

General Thoughts

· Give each room a distinct purpose; be sure to show mainstream functionality

· Tone down or redecorate any heavily themed rooms

· Show a use for awkward spaces (i.e. create a book nook under the stairs)

· Present a gender-neutral master bedroom

· Create a spa-like environment in the bathrooms – hang clean, new linens; invest in new shower curtains; display pretty soaps

· Remove wallpaper – don’t lose the opportunity to sell your house because potential buyers can’t fathom dealing with wallpaper removal

· Apply fresh paint – often touch ups will suffice but don’t be afraid to repaint overly colorful walls with a more neutral palette

· Complete minor repairs such as creaky doors, loose handles, and drawer pulls

· All switches, switch plates, outlets, and outlet covers should be clean and match in each space

· Fix any wall or ceiling cracks

· Furniture should be the right size for the space; rearrange items for a better flow

· Remove or cover old, worn out furniture

· Window treatments should be fashionable, clean, and functioning

· Lighting – install new bulbs; clean all windows; use lamps to bring in as much light as possible

Curb Appeal – The exterior of your home is the first thing potential buyers will see

· Power wash the house, sidewalk, and drive way

· Remove weeds from flower beds and pavement

· Hedges should be trimmed and tidy

· Sweep away leaves and debris from pavement, porches and patios

· The outside entrance should be inviting and uncluttered

· Display prominent house numbers

· Apply fresh paint to exterior doors (or clean thoroughly)

· Be sure the mailbox is clean and straight

· Scoop pet droppings from yard areas

· Repair and paint fences and gates

Efficient staging will increase the sale price and decrease the amount of time on the market. Staging helps create a more emotional purchase when buyers can envision themselves in the home. 77% of buyers said that it was easier to visualize themselves in a property that was staged. And remember, realtors are another fabulous resource for staging ideas. I would love to work with you as you ready your home for sale - contact me today!