Staging Your Home to Sell

Posted by Jeffrey G. Funk P.A. on Thursday, November 1st, 2007 at 4:08pm.

Staging your home is very important in today’s buyers real estate market when selling your home. Staging is a way of preparing your home for viewers so that they can see themselves living there. It’s all about showing your home’s personality and charm. This means getting rid of all personal clutter and memorabilia as this portrays you and your home and you want buyers to see it as their home. A clean, open space is generally the key to staging a home properly.

However, homes that seem very ordinary also won’t sell as well. This is why developers spend so much money on designers specifically to come and stage their model homes. Nice furnishings and accessories can help sell a home and it can be difficult for buyer’s to envision the space as their own if it is empty.

A home that is unkept also says something about the home and it’s current owners. Clutter and dirt send the message that the home has not been very well taken care of. This leads potential buyers to wonder what kind of shape the home is really in and wondering what is about to need repair. This can lead to the owners getting much lower than asking price or having the house not sell at all. For all of these reasons, a professional home stager may be what is needed to sell a home. However, there are a few simple things that can be done to ensure that your home is staged properly to sell.

A very thorough cleaning is a great first step and is a must when staging your home. Sometimes things can get overlooked such as dust on ceiling fans and windowsills. All of these things need to be given a very good cleaning. The house will look and feel differently with a proper cleaning.

The next step to proper staging is to keep every room to only one function. For instance, in the living room, you want to convey the message that this is a space for people to come in and relax. If there is a computer in the space, take it out as this conveys a different message. Also make sure that all the rooms are very bright. A dark room is very uninviting and can make the room seem dingy and unclean. One thing that must be taken out of any room are dried flowers. They can make the air stale and only collect dust.

One step that cannot be ignored when staging a kitchen is to clear all the countertops. A fresh flower arrangement can be nice but keep it limited to just that. Keep a drawer for things that can be easily stowed such as a coffeemaker, knives and other items. Place items in this drawer when the realtor is bringing people through to look at the house. Any out-dated appliances and light fixtures should also be replaced with newer ones.

The same concept applies to the bathroom as well. This is a place that should be very clean and hygienic and this look can only be achieved by clearing off all countertops as well as the medicine cabinet and any cabinets under the sink. Keep the room very tidy and don’t have towels or clothes lying around. Again, change any light fixtures that need updating.

Closets can do a lot to sell a home and you want to make yours appear as big as possible. For this reason, carefully sort through your closet and get rid of any clothes that you don’t wear anymore. Take any clothes that are out of season and put them away somewhere else to give the closet more space. Potential buyers are sure to open the closet doors and see what kind of space is inside so make sure that doors are easy to open and that there is lots of space inside for them to look at.

All clutter in every area of the home needs to be removed. This is a must for home staging. Make sure that any night tables in the bedroom are free of all clutter as well as desks in the office or den. Make sure that the garage can comfortably house as many cars as it’s supposed to and clean up basements to free them of any clutter. If need be, place miscellaneous items in storage bins and stow the bins away from the centre of the space. This will look much better than having piles of things everywhere.

There is some cost associated with getting a professional home stager and these costs vary greatly. However, by putting in the extra money at the beginning, it has been shown that the home will sell for more; usually about five to ten percent more than was originally expected on the home and the home will also sell a lot faster. Home stagers will usually do a walk-through of the home to determine what needs to be done and will come up with a price based on that. Depending on the stager being used, they may give the homeowners a list of things that need to be done or the stager will do it themselves.

Either way, a professional home stager can be a great investment when trying to sell a home. They provide valuable knowledge that will help you get the most for your home in the shortest time.

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