If you have a home on the market, staging is a must to remain competitive in today's real estate market. While you can hire someone to stage your home, this is also something you can do yourself. One of the most important things to keep in mind is that staging has more to do with buyer appeal than personal preference. This can be difficult to process because your home is where you live, and where you live is personal.
By following the five steps below, you can look at your home from the perspective of a buyer, and begin staging for success.
Start At The Curb
Staging is not only important within the walls of your home, but it needs to begin at the curb. This includes making sure that your landscaping is lush, green, and well maintained. While you may not have the time or the money to complete a full makeover of your landscape, you may want to plant seasonal flowers and other minor items. Also make sure that your windows are clean, your brick and paint are in good condition, your sidewalks and driveways are pristine, and your garbage cans are out of sight.
Do A Walk Through
Once you have the exterior of your home looking fresh and clean, it is time to work on the inside. Grab a pad of paper and a pen and walk through your home room-by-room as if it is your first time inside. Take a critical eye and look for areas of improvement that you have become so accustomed to seeing on a daily basis that you may have forgotten they need some maintenance. This could include anything, such as broken door jams, soiled floor runners, chipped paint, or dusty baseboards.
Repair, Clean, And De-Clutter
Now that you have compiled a list of areas that need small repairs, it is time to repair, clean, and de-clutter. While you may not want to spend money on your home when you are trying to sell it, even a couple hundred dollars worth of repairs can increase the sale of your home by several thousand dollars. This is because buyers don't want to move into a home that needs work. Do a deep clean of your home, including cleaning the walls and shampooing the carpets.
Once you are done cleaning, it is time to de-clutter. De-cluttering for staging includes removing personal items, such as the vase your daughter made at school this year, the vast majority of family photos, and all knickknacks. Once you are done cleaning, do a second walk-through to ensure that your home smells fresh and clean. You might also consider adding a mood boosting scent, such as peppermint. Room fragrance is often overlooked, but smell has a huge impact on emotion, and you want your buyer to feel happy and secure.
Create Defined Living Spaces
An important part to staging is creating well-defined living spaces, which may not have already been established in your home. For example, if you use your formal dining room as a playroom for your kids, you'll want to return it to its designated living space so that buyers automatically know which rooms they are walking into. Instead of investing in new furniture, you may be able to rent furniture while your home is on the market
Open Rooms Up
In an effort to make your rooms flow and to make the square footage look larger than it is, rearrange furniture and add elements that help to open up your rooms. This includes adding additional lighting, adding mirrors, and removing furniture that overwhelms the space.
The steps above will take time and great attention to detail, but will make your home significantly more desirable to buyers. If you need help determining which areas of your home need improvement, reach out to a realtor for advice.
This article was written by Jared Miret, father and home handyman. He staged his home with some chic furniture, a room diffuser, and a few fluffy throws. His buyer said “it felt like home”.