Did you know that staging your home when getting ready to sell can actually increase your sale price? Staging helps boost a home’s perceived value! On average, sellers receive $2 in increased sale price for every $1 they put into staging a home. According to The International Association of Home Staging Professionals, 95% of staged homes sell on average in 11 days or less and for 17% above the asking price compared to those not staged, in a similar market.
Proper staging can help a potential buyer visualize your home as “move-in ready” and facilitate in not only helping you sell your home for a higher price but help you to sell your home quicker. It assists in allowing the buyer feel like they could drop their bags and move right in.
Wondering where to begin?
First off and probably most important is to find the right pros to work with! Choosing a realtor like David to represent you and showcase your home in the best way possible is a perfect first step. The right realtor takes professional photos. In this day and age where the majority of buyers use the tools of the internet...dated and dirty homes that may actually be a diamond in the ruff often get overlooked due to the homeowner just not taking the time to do some minor updates. According the National Association of Realtors, 63% of homebuyers will drop by after viewing a home they liked online.
Here are 7 quick & easy things you can do:
1. Curb Appeal
2. Focus on what is Photogenic
3. Light it Up
4. Remove the Fur Babies
5. Take the Home Out of the House
6. Create a Sense of Comfort
1 CURB APPEAL- First impressions are everything! Buyers tend to make up their mind within the first 30 seconds of approaching the front door so sprucing up your home's curb appeal is very important and vital to attracting potential buyers. This means painting, updating, and trimming. For example, paint the front door in a bold, cheery, glossy color. Focus on a few hot spots, like updating those old light fixtures or maybe a new mailbox and house numbers. Plant flowers that are in bloom or use seasonal potted plants. Brighten and refresh your home’s entry so that visitors feel welcome. Potential buyers tend to drive by before they actually get inside and the home’s exterior (front entry, yard, driveway and sidewalk) serve as a snapshot of what’s to come.
2 FOCUS ON WHAT IS PHOTOGENIC - It’s hard to go wrong with neutral colors. Bold colors such as red and green tend to not show that well in real estate photos. Apply a fresh coat of light, neutral paint to your walls. Most buyers will be able to imagine their furniture more easily in a neutral-colored room. If you don’t have the time or funds to paint entire rooms, you can make a great first impression by quickly adding coat of white paint to the ceilings.
When a buyer is looking through photos you want them to have the impression that someone lives in your house and it’s really a home. There should be no forgotten spaces and focus on all your square footage by making every closet and corner work. The old style of staging often leaned towards the sterile look and felt more like a big-box furniture showroom, but that’s not the case today. Show off your collectibles, add books to those beautiful bookshelves, store your magazines on your coffee table, and don’t be afraid to hang up your unique art. Remove that worn down carpet and uncover your home's assets by exposing hardwood flooring when you can.
Choose living plants over fake ones and add in colorful accent pillows and throws to compliment your neutral rooms.
3 LIGHT IT UP – Believe it or not, after location, good light is the one thing that every buyer cites that they want in a home. Nothing is more of a turn-off than a dark dingy home, yet nothing is easier to fix! One way to accomplish this is by washing all of the windows so natural light can fill the space. You can also take down the heavy dark drapes and replace with light sheer ones. Change out your lampshades and increase the wattage of your light bulbs. Experts say there should be at least 100 watts for every square foot of space, so layer the light in your home. Add overhead lights, floor lamps, and task lighting (for reading and/or cooking). A fairly easy trick to making rooms appear larger is by having wall sconces. They light up the walls and ceiling.
Freshen up any built-in lighting with new switch plates and dimmer switches and cut the bushes outside to let sunshine in. The more bright and cheery your home is, the more sellable it will be.
4 REMOVE THE FUR BABIES – Unfortunately not everyone is a dog, cat, rabbit lover. It’s logical to think that your cuddly fur baby would make a potential buyer feel right at home, but buyers don’t want to walk through your home and smell the kitty litter box, have pet hair stick to their clothes or see a bowl full of dog food. It gives the impression that a house is not clean. If you have an open house, plan to send the furry ones to a pet hotel or friend’s for the day.
5 TAKE THE HOME OUT OF THE HOUSE - It’s hard for potential homebuyers to visualize their furniture and accessories in a property that is loaded with other people’s stuff. The best thing to do when selling your home is to de-personalize it. Put in storage a 3rd of your stuff (this would include family photos, memorabilia collections and personal keepsakes). Rearrange your furniture so that your space and floor plan is maximized to the fullest. Clear away the clutter (resist shoving into closet space) and excess furniture and organize your shelves to highlight how much storage you have.
It can be confusing when a room has a variety of uses, so choose to make it an office, game room/theater or maybe even an exercise room.
6 CREATE A SENSE OF COMFORT - Expand your space visually. Having furniture pushed up against a wall makes the room feel small, so float your furniture. Rearrange the room in logical conversational groupings, with enough space for people to move between pieces easily. Make sure large pieces of furniture don't block a great view or a focal point, such as a fireplace. Often less furniture is more. Professional stagers suggest that rugs stop a foot or two from walls and a rug that's too big shrinks a room. Yet, if it's too small it can look out of place. If your dining room is modest in size, take extra leaves out of your table and limit chairs to four.
7 CLEAN - Thoroughly clean the entire home! You want a home to look new and fresh. If something's not completely clean, it’s easy to think what else isn't maintained? If the house is too dirty and messy it gives people the perception that they will have a lot of work to do and clean before they can move in.
Empty all wastebaskets and take out the garbage. Focus on the rooms that potential buyers are most interested in…the living room, dining room, kitchen and bathroom. Throw away kitchen sponges and put away dirty dishtowels, mops and brooms. Make sure your refrigerator is clean and the kitchen cupboards are nicely organized. Replace bar soap with liquid soap dispensers in the bathrooms and put out clean towels. Make sure your doormats are clean and presentable. Sweep your front porch and sidewalk. Repair cracks and holes in the walls; re-caulk tubs, showers and sinks, and polish chrome faucets and mirrors. To avoid a musty smells or odors, place a floral arrangement in your foyer and a centerpiece on the dining room table.
Ready, set, sell! :-)