Everyone has heard that Realtors® recommend that homeowners “stage” their homes before putting them up for sale. But what does staging mean? In simple terms, staging is preparing a home for maximum sales appeal. It is not the same as decorating, which ads your personal style. When a house is for sale, it becomes a product, and you want your product to look better than competing products in order to yield you the highest return. You want your product to say “Welcome” and to allow buyers to imagine themselves in your house.
Staged homes are usually on the market for a shorter time and sell at higher prices than non-staged homes. The most effective staging techniques are:
Clean! Start with a clean slate and make sure counters, floors, kitchen, bathrooms, and windows are clean, that floors are mopped, and rugs and carpets are vacuumed. If your windows have blinds and your ceilings have fans or chandeliers, dust them.
Paint: Paint works wonders! Offer your buyers a clean canvas using neutral tones on the walls and bright white on trims and moldings.
Curb Appeal: power wash exterior, trim grass, and plantings, add colorful flowers and remove overgrown bushes and trees
Declutter: buyers want space and to be able to envision their belongings in the house. Clear counters in the kitchen and bathrooms, clean and organize closets, remove pictures and personal items, remove items from hooks, start packing early!
Re arrange furniture: To create a natural flow and allow buyers to comfortably walk through the house
Let there be light! Remove heavy and dark window treatments, replace them with lighter fabric ones and allow natural light throughout.
The staging process is influenced by the Seasons, too! The Fall is known as the 2nd most popular Season to sell homes, and it’s beautiful and cozy atmosphere is the perfect backdrop and inspiration to stage homes for sale!
Start with the outside: decorate front yards, walkways, porches and entry ways with mums and pumpkins
Inside: if you have a working fireplace, take advantage to set a nice cozy mood inside; use a few cozy pillows and throws in warm tones to accent couches and beds
Light: this time of the year the days are shorter, make sure there is adequate lighting at any time of the day; up the wattage and keep curtains and blinds open
Seasonal scents: nothing says Fall like the scents of apples and cinnamon. HGTV recommends that prior to showing your home, burn a cinnamon-scented candle or simmer a pot of apple cider on the stove with a stick of cinnamon thrown in.
No matter which time of the year, selling a home can be a stressful process, but its important to remember that a little work ahead of listing and attention to a few details will make the difference between a fast sale at a higher price and a listing that sits longer on the market with repeated showings and price reductions.