home staging

At last! You decided to sell your house.  Don’t congratulate yourself yet and expect to move out right away.  The world of real estate is highly competitive and it is very unlikely that you seal the deal with a limited budget, time and exposure.  Preparing yourself and your house for effective home staging could potentially open the door to selling your house for a good deal with a good price – and fast.  Here are 10 tips to guide you:

Getting ready To Sell - 10 Home Staging Tips

1. Assess the marketable status of your house

Salesmanship is a skill that cannot be expected from regular homeowners.   For whichever out of the many reasons that finally made you want to sell your house, it is important to recall that special reason which made you want to live there in the first place.  You’ve lived in it.  You’ve had kids in it.  You’ve had friends over. You’ve dined, wined, slept and even cried in it.  Being too familiar with our homes makes us forget its value and take it for granted.  Take a good look at your house now and evaluate its marketable points.

2. Appraise the value of your house from your perspective

Go through your house from room to room, space to space and corner to corner. Reminisce on moments that the property became more than just a house to you (a prize for hard work, a neutral ground for your parent’s war, the territorial limit of your in-laws, a fortress that your boss could not penetrate or a melting pot for your friends). Bottom-line is you will not be able to sell something that you don’t find value in.  Evaluate each area as to usefulness and functionality.  This will also help you decide which stuff will go to the moving van and which will stay for the open house.  Now, it’s time to declutter and start the inventory.

3. Consumerism is always visually driven

Now is the time to air out those antiques, branded tea sets and expensive dinner wares. Set them up in places conducive for receiving guests and help you engage discussions. Buyers go by what they see but you can manipulate their vision through some optical strategies.  Put mirrors in tight corners to create an illusion of space.  Remove the things that may incite controversies in religion, race or politics. Instead, handpick conversation-starter photos and memorabilia that would make them want to live there as well.

Install artworks that will direct their attention to intricate details of the house (mosaic tiles, wood carvings, handpainted walls).  Lounging areas and places of rest are best adorned with fluffy pillows, soft and clean mattresses.  This will make your house seem cozy and warm.

4. Cleanliness should be prioritized and never compromised

Mildews, stains, dust bunnies and cobwebs instantly decreases market value on sight. Cleaning routines should be established and upkeep should be calculated at the outset (water supplies, water closets, household plumbing, electrical circuits, drainage, garbage disposal, pest control and similar issues).

5. You can control the overall atmosphere and ambiance

Each house exudes certain moods when you enter it for the first time. Naturally, buyers will be looking for any feeling of relaxation and comfort.  This is where proper ventilation and adequate lighting comes in.  Avoid heavy draping and redundant decorations that obstruct the view in order for the buyers to see the flexibility of the spaces therein.  Live plants help make your place fresh and airy.  The smell of freshly baked cookies, brewed coffee and light jazz background music will also certainly work wonders for you.

Getting ready To Sell - 10 Home Staging Tips

6. Allow the buyer to see his home in your house

A minimalist design, well-kept solid wood furniture elegant and classy, would be appropriate.  Total motif should be kept in neutral tones.  A splash of color should only be used to accentuate details in architecture.  Minimalism gives a touch of sophistication and sense of luxury, giving your buyer the idea that your house will improve his lifestyle.

7. You can stage your area and community

Your house’s market value does not actually depend on where it is actually located but how it is situated. Your community will help you stage your lawn, garden, fences, and outer walls.  Buyers will be looking at safety, health, social acceptance and convenience.  Think ahead of any seasonal occurrence that you have to prepare for based on location (overflow of streams, falling of leaves, height of snow, garbage collection, road closures, etc.).

8. The quality of your lifestyle can be staged

Any lifestyle is dependent on accessibility and community. Access to key places (work, school, hospital, police station, grocery stores, banks, etc.) and key services (internet, telephone, cable television, etc.) will always be considered.  The impression of the community (social status, personalities of neighbors, traffic, population, etc.) is also an influential factor.  You do not need to avail of all it, what is important is that your house has open and ready access for these considerations.

9. There are inexpensive ways to advertise and promote your home

With limited budget, you can always take advantage of your social media accounts and online circles.  It would help to learn from online promotional strategies of established realtors like karkanja. Set up visible posts at allowed public places.  Flaunt your house to attract prospective buyers by installing outdoor decorations and lightings on the nearest holiday or turning your garden lights on every night.

10. You should know how to address depreciation

Staging your home also requires staging yourself. Here are some questions to help you prepare:

  • Why would I choose your house over one that is newly built?
  • Why would I want something that somebody is willing to let go?

As a seller, you’re looking at your house as a property. For any buyer, they will be looking at your house as a possible home.  Stage your home in such a way that you are offering an exclusive opportunity rather than a commodity.  The value of a thing increases when it is unlike any other.  Your house is unique from other houses because it is your home.  A recent shift in lifestyle merely reminded you that others also need to have a good home.  The value of a house will always depreciate but a home will always remain priceless.

Home staging is the art and science of preparing a home so that it looks as attractive as possible to prospective buyers. Interior design has a huge and often unexpected impact on how desirable a property is to a viewer. Ultimately, the goal is to have a prospective buyer walk into the house and immediately want to own it.

Staging a home can have a dramatic difference on its entire character. Home staging isn’t just about cleaning and removing clutter, it’s about creating an entire feel and ambiance that makes someone who walks through each room think “This house looks and feels great! I’d love to live here!” A staged home looks not only more attractive but also more spacious, more vibrant and more alive.

Staging a Home Yourself

You don’t need to spend a lot of money hiring a professional home stager who will charge between $500 and $5,000, depending on the size of your home and other factors. If you have a good eye for interior design, you can save yourself money by staging your own home and you may find it to be a fun and rewarding way to see your living space transformed before your eyes.

With a little inspiration and creativity, you can stage any house yourself to make it a true work of art. In spite of the benefits of home staging, many home sellers are reluctant to change the interior of their house to make it more desirable to buyers, and this gives anyone who does decide to stage their house a huge advantage over other sellers.

You can effectively stage a home no matter its size or what style of furniture and home accessories it currently has. The key to creating beautiful interior spaces is to arrange the large items of furniture is such a way so they are effortless to look at (i.e. everything looks completely natural in its place) and then to arrange small items and accessories around the furniture to create the desired effect. One of the best ways to get ideas is to look online for photos and design blogs and then make some notes on what you think you could apply to your home. There are too many good websites to name here but even just a Google image search can give you plenty of ideas.

Using Small Details to Transform a Home

Naturally, there’s no point in spending a lot of money staging a house just to sell it. Home staging is about making high-impact but low-cost changes to the small details in each room. For example, changing sofa cushions and adding an attractive table lamp and two accent chairs next to a side table can completely change the character and feel of a living room. In a bedroom, changing the bed covers to a subtle shade such as vanilla or teal and adding matching side tables can make a huge difference to how the room feels. A table runner and candles can add elegance and sophistication to even the humblest of dining rooms. It’s these details that can truly transform a house. None of these changes are hugely expensive and can be the difference between a property selling in 6 weeks and 6 months.

Very often, you can make more out of less. Small details such as changing old curtains for some luxuriant satin designs, adding patterned rugs or even some fresh flowers to a table can make a huge difference. You may find you don’t need to purchase many additional items at all. By just rethinking the way your home is currently arranged you can come up with many new ideas.

It’s also worth bearing in mind that home buyers are more likely to buy a property that has been staged than one that’s empty. Most buyers like to see houses that are loved and well cared for. Vacant houses can feel lifeless and cold, despite appearing larger by being empty.

Home Staging Doesn’t Hide Problems

Unfortunately, many homeowners are under the impression that staging will effectively hide problems a property has (especially older neglected properties). Trying to make buyers unaware that problems exist usually backfires. Buyers may be unaware of problems for a short while, but a property inspection will make that short-lived.

If a building has structural problems or even serious health hazards such as lead pipes or asbestos ceiling tiles, staging is not going to be a solution to those problems. Homeowners may even need to get rid of any pests or bugs that may have infested the home by hiring a professional pest control company. Once any major issues with the property have been resolved and cleaning has been completed, you can get to work on staging rooms to bring out the best in each. Staging a house is only going to effectively speed up its sale when any serious issues have been resolved first.

When in Doubt, Go for Simplicity

Simplicity and minimalism are always attractive qualities, and this is even truer if you are working with limited space. A cluttered room is hardly ever attractive, and the more items in a room, the less attractive it appears to someone who’s never seen it before. If you have small rooms to decorate, less is definitely more. Simple, neutral colors and designs are usually the most effective. This doesn’t mean that you have to decorate every room with dull gray; light shades and subtle patterns can often speak louder than bold colors and strong designs.

Vibrant color can be used in moderation to bring some spice and uniqueness to rooms. Bright curtains and rugs can be used to make drab rooms come to life, but just make sure any strong colors you use don’t contrast. The last thing you want is room to look like an explosion in a Sherwin-Williams warehouse! Simplicity can be harder to achieve in interior design, but it almost always makes a room look more attractive.

All in all, you can stage just about any home beautifully without spending much money at all. The old saying “creativity over capital” is as applicable to interior design as much as anything else. By making some simple changes to how furniture is arranged, replacing some accessories and adding some new details, any room can be given a powerful “wow factor”. You only have one chance to make a good first impression, and that first impression can often be the most important.