Need your opinion. Take a look at the pictures above and decide which one you’d like to see in a home you could potentially be buying.
My guess is you chose the room on the right? It’s clean, decluttered, depersonalized, shows neutral tones and allows you to envision your own furniture in this space. This is the power of staging!
My husband and I were recently looking for a new home and thought we had come across a gem! The pictures were beautiful on the outside and the inside, but apparently they had been taken a while back! We walked in and immediately smelled a foul odor, the trash hadn’t been taken out, the furniture was too big for all of the rooms, the counters were packed with the owner’s personal items, there was dog hair everywhere…need I say more? The state of the house (even though it could all be fixed in time), completely turned us off from making an offer. I couldn’t picture our brand new baby learning to crawl on those floors or moving our furniture into those rooms because I could barely tell the size of them with the oversized beds and chairs. All this to say, staging your house is of the utmost importance when you’re in the market to sell.
The Real Estate Staging Association actually did a study on this topic and found that “…out of 174 studied homes that had been on the market for an average of 156 days before homeowners hired a professional home stager, they sold an average of 42 days after staging and re-listing.”
We know that hiring a professional stager can be quite pricey, so here are a few simple but incredibly important rules to follow to stage your home for sale.
- Declutter and depersonalize.
- One of the best ways to stage your home for someone else to imagine living there is to get rid of your personal stuff. Declutter books, pictures, knickknacks, and anything else that is exclusively you.
- Paint walls in neutral tones.
- Real estate experts often suggest that sellers repaint their home in neutral hues (linen, tan, beige) to create a blank canvas for optimal staging.
- Turn on all the lights.
- If you don’t have enough light, things can look drab and dreary, especially if you have showings on a gray day. Add floor lamps to rooms that don’t have enough light or even borrow table lamps from friends and neighbors to brighten things up.
- Set the table.
- A blank dining room table is boring. Instead, set it for a dinner party so there is a wow factor when buyers walk in and see your beautifully arranged table.
- Add mirrors.
- Mirrors are an easy and cost-effective way to make a room look larger – and who doesn’t like a bigger room?
- Keep furniture proportional to the room.
- Strategically placing a minimal amount of furniture in a small space works better than over crowding it with too much furniture.
- Turn your bathroom into an oasis.
- Purchase solid white towels, rugs, and shower curtains. These simple luxuries don’t cost much, but can make a significant difference in the feel of the room. Plus, who can argue with white?
- Clean out and organize closets.
- The potential buyer will want to open your closet doors to see storage space options. And when they do, make sure the closet is well organized. They don’t want to see everything stuffed in the closet for hiding!
- Clear off countertops.
- Get rid of all clutter in bathrooms and kitchens except for the bare necessities that “read” bathroom (soap dish and a hand towel) or kitchen (coffee machine). You could put a cookbook on a stand on a kitchen counter, and have it open to a fun recipe. Kitchens are often the number one priority on a buyer’s list, so make yours look as clean, open, and spacious as possible.