According to the most recent Profile of Home Staging report from the National Association of Realtors, less than 30 percent of home sellers’ real estate agents stage their clients’ homes.
Yet, that same report suggests that more than 80 percent of buyers’ agents say they believe home staging makes it easier for their clients to imagine themselves moving into a home. Additionally, 40 percent of buyers’ agents say they believe house staging leaves a major impact on their clients.
Home staging does require a little more effort on the part of someone selling a home. But the numbers don’t lie: Staging a house will pay off in a big way when you take the time to do it.
Here are 12 house staging tips that will make buyers fall in love with your home when they see it for the first time.
1. Stage the Outside of Your Home First
Most people think the home staging process starts inside their home.
But in reality, you should start outside by making improvements to your curb appeal. After all, home buyers aren’t going to want to come inside your house if what they see out front doesn’t impress them.
Clear leaves, dead plants, and other debris from your front yard. Power wash your driveway, your walkway, and your siding. And put fresh mulch in your flowerbed along with new plants, flowers, and even trees.
This will entice people to want to come and take a closer look at your home.
2. Begin Staging the Inside by Decluttering
Once you have the outside of your home looking its best, it’ll be time to move inside so that you can start staging it. The first thing you should do when you get inside your home is walk through it and declutter it.
Go through the mail that you’ve had sitting on your counter for weeks now and either throw it out or file it away. Clean up the cardboard boxes that you have sitting in every corner of your house. And find a place for anything else that’s sitting out on counters, ledges, and the floor.
If you don’t do anything else, decluttering will improve the appearance and your home dramatically and make it look like you put time into keeping it looking presentable.
3. Remove Any Personal Items From Your Home
Do you have pictures of your family hanging up all over the place in your home? Is your refrigerator filled with the artwork your kids have made for you over the years? Are all of your family’s upcoming events scribbled on a large calendar in your kitchen?
Put all these kinds of things away somewhere. Home buyers are going to have a hard time envisioning themselves living in your home when they’re surrounded by things that remind them of you and your family.
4. Clean Every Aspect of Your House
When is the last time you:
- Cleaned the hardwood floors throughout your home?
- Scrubbed the grout in between the tiles in your bathrooms?
- Pulled the refrigerator out and vacuumed behind and underneath it?
- Polished the countertops in your kitchen?
- Washed your windows, inside and out, and your window frames?
Chances are, it’s been months, if not years, since you’ve done some of these things. Create a list of things that need to be cleaned in your home and get everyone who lives in your house to pitch in.
5. Eliminate Bad Odors (and Add Some Fresh Ones!)
If you smoke, have pets, or have just lived in your home for an extra long time now, your house has a very distinct smell. That smell is going to hit home buyers in the face when they walk in and stick with them if you’re not careful.
Cleaning your home will eliminate some of the smell from your home. But you should also open up your windows to air it out so that the smell starts to go away.
Try to replace the usual smell with some fresh smells, too. And don’t just do it by spraying air fresheners that can cause home buyers to gag.
Instead, light candles in your home and place fragrant flowers throughout it. The smells that these things produce will leave a much better impression on people.
6. Consider Adding New Colors to the Walls
Do you have crazy colors covering some of the walls in your home? Replace them with neutral colors instead.
The last thing you want is for someone to walk into your staged living room and only see the bright orange paint on the walls. By toning it down, you can keep the focus on what’s truly important.
7. Bring More Natural Light Into Your Home
Home buyers these days value homes that have a lot of natural light shining into them. Even if your home doesn’t get a ton of direct sunlight, you can make it feel brighter by:
- Painting the walls light colors
- Taking down any dark curtains, blinds, or shades
- Cleaning your windows or investing in new windows for your home
Natural light will make your home feel like a happy place where people want to be.
8. Remove Oversized Furniture
When it comes to the furniture you use during home staging, less is always more. If you have oversized couches, chairs, and tables, they’re going to make rooms look smaller than they are.
Take any oversized furniture and stick it into storage for the time being. If you can afford it, rent smaller furniture that fits into the various spaces in your home better.
9. Strategically Position the Furniture That Stays
In addition to removing any oversized furniture from your home, you also want to reposition furniture that stays to make rooms more appealing.
Under normal circumstances, you might have all the furniture in, say, your living room facing the TV. But instead of taking that approach, arrange your furniture so that it promotes socialization when people sit down.
People respond better to furniture that’s set up like this. They’ll appreciate the feeling that it adds to your home.
10. Work Subtle Accessories Into the Mix
You don’t want to clutter up your home with too many accessories. But there’s nothing wrong with adding subtle touches here and there to make your home feel more welcoming.
Put throw pillows on your couch and a decorative blanket on the back of it. Place a basket of fruit and vegetables on the countertop in your kitchen. Break out the fancy hand towels in the bathroom.
These are all small touches, but they’ll go over well with home buyers as they walk through your home.
11. Keep Your Carpets Clean
Most home buyers today prefer to see hardwood floors throughout a home. But if you have carpeting and don’t plan on replacing it prior to putting your home up on the market, make the most of what you have.
Either clean stains from your carpets yourself or, better yet, have your carpets cleaned by a professional carpet cleaning company. Home buyers will react more favorably to the presence of carpeting when it appears as though it’s still on the newer side.
12. Repair Anything That Needs to Be Fixed
Imagine how you would feel if you were walking through a home and went to open a kitchen cabinet only to have that cabinet come crashing down. You would wonder what else was broken inside of the house, right?
That’s exactly what other people are going to think if they find a cabinet that’s off its hinges or a drawer with a broken handle on it. Spend a Saturday afternoon making minor repairs throughout your home so that home buyers don’t find any unexpected surprises.
Use These Home Staging Tips to Sell Your Home Fast
Home staging doesn’t have to cost you a fortune.
You can invest some money into the staging process if you want to put your home over the top. But even if you just do a few of the things mentioned here, it’ll make a big difference in the way your home looks. Buyers will be more impressed with it when home staging is done.
Contact me today to find out how I can help you sell your home. I can handle everything from house staging to marketing your home to prospective buyers once it goes up for sale.