Our homes are our sanctuaries. When it’s time to move, however, we need to reimagine it for potential buyers. When you stage a house for selling, it’s a different thought process than creating a space for yourself and loved ones. You have to appeal to a broader audience, and that means hiding personal items or rearranging furniture. All sellers want there home to have the most expansive reach possible. Therefore, consider following these steps to staging your home before buyers walk in your front door.
1. Start with the Outside
As we know, first impressions are essential. How does the exterior of your home look? Making an effort on the outside is critical to attracting people inward. Here are some tips to ensure killer curb appeal:
- Power wash the sides and walkways
- Weed your front lawn and driveway (and don’t forget to mow your lawn too!)
- Make sure your outdoor plants are healthy
- Wash windows thoroughly
- Repaint chips and stains on the front walkway and siding
2. Deep Clean
Now that you’ve tantalized prospective buyers, what next? Remember, having buyers visiting means it’s not just about “tidying up”. Get your home, carpets and hardwood floors professionally deep cleaned to brighten up your home and make it feel fresh.
3. No More Clutter
Yes, it’s time to clear away most of the knick-knacks that make your home uniquely you. Having a conversation piece is excellent for a party, but these potential buyers are here to envision themselves in this space, and not learn about your personal taste. Clear away anything too over the top, and find a balance between “you” and a neutral living space.
Here are a few ideas to consider:
- Remove books/movies that don’t fit neatly on a shelf
- Put away anything on top of tables, shelves or the floor like magazines, knick-knacks, toys and so on
- Tidy up clothes or items spilling out of closets
4. Adjust Your Style
Since we’re on the subject of clutter, reconsider your pictures and some furniture items as well. Something that may appeal to your unique sense of style may be out of place to someone visualizing their own furniture in the space. Creating more space in a room makes the room appear larger, so if you’re debating on moving your shaggy ottoman, remember: less is more.
5. Move Furniture Around
Now that you’ve moved out some of your furniture and wall hangings, move your furniture and light fixtures around to maximize the space. There are many home magazines or feng shui websites that can help visualize where each piece of furniture is meant to be.
6. Choose a Calming Color Palette
If your style is loud, it may not resonate with a prospective buyer. Choose a calm or neutral color palette and have it represented around the whole house. After you’ve done so, feel free to add a pop of color for whimsy, but overdoing it will distract buyers from the house itself.
7. Find Balance in Extra Rooms
When we have extra rooms, we tend to use them for collecting unused furniture, pictures, workout equipment and more. If you have extra space, think about repurposing it for a neutral guest bedroom or tone down a children’s bedroom into a more calming space. Store toys in the closet, or if you are already in the process of packing, get a temporary storage unit. Again, we don’t know who is purchasing the home, so showcasing the possibilities of an extra room is vital.
8. Bring Purpose to Tricky Areas
Is there a particular space that's tricky? Adding life to areas that are usually hard to visualize what to do with can help buyers understand the space better. Whether under the stairs, a nook, or an upstairs alcove, consider dressing it up to show potential. This tricky area may end up being a huge selling point!
9. The Importance of Lighting
It may seem like an inconsequential detail, but lighting is crucial in staging a home. There are several types of lighting, and you should represent all three for maximum appeal:
- Ambient lighting: overhead lighting that lights up an entire space
- Task lighting: lights that help with tasks like reading or working on projects
- Accent lighting: Usually located on a table or wall that brings extra warmth to the room
10. Show The Lifestyle People Want
If you live in Claremont, you’re certainly familiar with what makes a versatile home in suburban Southern California. If you’re selling during the summer, upsell the firepit or water features in the backyard. Furthermore, winter could attract people to the fireplace and homey kitchen.
Whatever your home’s current state is, staging a home is key to helping prospective buyers imagine themselves in the space and more importantly, put in an offer.