In today’s economy a large majority of sellers need to sell their house first before buying another house. How do you realistically stage your home while still living there and juggling a full work load? Today I want to talk about real life staging, not an episode of Fixer Upper where the huge vans pulls up and fills your home with "untouchables".
Let’s first talk about the basic definition and benefit of Staging. My definition is “to set the stage in such a way that the new buyer envisions themselves living in the space.” In order to make that possible, a couple of things need to happen.
- Declutter- last week I wrote an article that might be helpful. Decluttering is always the first step. Pack away things you don’t use on a daily basis. ie: toys, books, pictures, collections or breakables. Pack up extra crockpots, kitchen appliances, special occasion dishes and anything else that is just taking up space. When buyers open a kitchen cabinet they want to see storage space and not things crammed into what appears to be small spaces.
- Make sure front porch area is inviting. This is so important as many times buyers drive buy a property beforescheduling a showing. If the front exterior looks bland but the inside is really nice is hard to get them through the door. Depersonalize your space. Some family pictures are fine but a majority of them should be packed up.
Here is an example of a bookshelf in my home. It has a lot of sentimental items and pictures that are special to me. It is WAY too busy should I put my house on the market.
After removing excess books and photos the space becomes less cluttered and easier for a buyer to visualize how they would use the space. Also notice I used the same items to stage the shelf. If you don’t own many items for staging there is no need to spend a great deal of money. Thrift stores are my favorite places to find inexpensive items for staging. Baskets, books, greenery, small lamps are all inexpensive ways to make an area more inviting.
- Style the dining table with a simple centerpiece.
- Clear everything off the refrigerator. The kitchen will photograph so much better.
- Remove excess furniture-this is the quickest way to increase the amount of space.
- Clean your home and be aware of any smells that a buyer may encounter when entering your home. I have shown many houses to people with allergic reactions to animals and smoke. You want your home to appeal to the largest array of buyers to sell in the shortest amount of time.
Doing a little prep work beforehand makes an incredible difference in the amount of time your home will be on the market. Give me a call today as I am happy to walk-through and give you some ideas of how your home can show in the best possible light for the quickest sale.