Home staging mean different things to different people, but the intention is always the same; make potential buyers fall in love with your home. Staging is, in brief, a strategy to sell your home faster and for more money employed by real estate agents across the nation. Home buyers are used to seeing picture perfect homes at open houses, in online listings photographs, and on home decorating shows, and they expect it. Here are a few ideas on what staging means and how you can use this strategy in the sale of your own home.
Staging is NOT just…
·Deep cleaning your home.
·Displaying your possessions in an attractive way.
·Rearranging your furniture.
·Lighting dozens of candles.
·Baking cookies and providing refreshments.
Staging goes one step further…
Let me explain. Yes, your home needs to be clean, organized, and attractive, but that is not staging, that is just common sense. Staging goes a step further by doing two things:
- Helping the potential buy look past the current occupants.
- Helping the potential buyer imagine themselves in the home.
The point is that you want the potential buyer planning where to hang up their family photographs, imagining where they want to put their furniture, and seeing themselves barbecuing in the back yard. The problem is that this is very hard to do when there are traces of the current occupants everywhere, drawing their attention away from the attractive qualities of the home. Instead of imagining themselves in the home, they are going to imagine the current occupants doing what they do and may not be able to see the hidden potential in the home. To combat this, you need to remove any trace of yourself such as family photographs, collections, clothes, toys, and anything that would give away your presence in the house. We call this depersonalization, the first step to amazing staging.
After you depersonalize your home you can start worrying about optics, namely curb appeal. The front yard, driveway, front facade, porch and door are the first things a potential buyer see, and therefore forms their first impression of the home. The goal, as with the rest of the home, should be a clean and neutral appearance. Things like mowing the lawn, trimming the hedge, power washing the siding and windows, planting flowers, and applying new paint to the front door are common sense suggestions to make a home more presentable. Equally as important is to depersonalize the front of your home. While lawn gnomes may be your thing, they may not be attractive to a potential buyer. Similarly, any signs (even welcome signs), flags, door stickers, toys, yard games, and so on, should be removed.
Time to talk about furniture…
Your furniture may fit the space amazingly, matching colors and all, but you still need to remove as much as you can. A rule of thumb is to leave as little furniture as possible without making the home feel empty. Your beautiful furniture does not come with the home and should not be there to distract potential buyers. Sparse and neutral is what you should be going for, leaving only enough to give the buyer a sense of the potential of the space.
The last facet of optics is lighting. Open your blinds and let in as much light as possible and leave a table lamp available just in case. If there are rooms with dark shades of paint it can be helpful to restore the walls to a neutral color that does not absorb light or distract from the rest of the home. Rooms with small windows or poor ambient lighting should have a second source of light made available such as a stand lamp or table lamp that can remain on during showings.
Following this simple guide can greatly improve the effectiveness of staging your home. Remember the true purpose of staging is not just cleaning or decluttering; these are normal, everyday actions that are expected. The purpose is to depersonalize, neutralize, and make sure there is room for potential buyers to imagine themselves in your home.
If you need advice or answers to questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to the friendly professionals at Sellstate Alliance Realty and Property Management.