Here are some tips to make your home more attractive to buyers without costing you an arm and a leg.
Professional home staging has become a niche business in the real estate community in recent years. While statistics show that professionally staged homes may be more appealing to buyers, this service does come at a price. In some cases, homeowners can spend several thousands of dollars hiring a professional to make the home look more aesthetically pleasing in order to fetch an offer.
For the budget conscious, or for those homeowners who cannot afford professional insight, there are things you can do on your own to stage your home for sale. In many cases, sellers overlook obvious fixes and minor repairs that can make all the difference in how their home looks to an interested buyer. First, let’s take on the “golden rule” of preparing your home for sale.
Golden Rule of Home Staging: Buyers Want To Imagine Themselves Living In Your Home
This is sometimes a hard rule for sellers who have spent several years in their home to swallow. Think back to when you began looking for your first home. As you walked toward the front door, didn’t you picture yourself walking through as if it were your house? The same goes for today’s home buyer as well. The most common thread that appeals to all buyers is “neat, clean, and spacious.”
Home Exterior Tweaks
For all aspects of home staging, think CLEAN! You don’t necessarily have to re-landscape your entire front yard, but make sure it’s at least kept neat and trim. Reseeding patches in your lawn can bring you new grass within a few weeks, and do your best to make sure your foliage is trimmed. Driveways should look neat and clean as well. Piles of debris and other items should be removed, and large spots and stains washed away.
Interior: Maximize Your Space
You’re moving anyway, and you’re going to have to pack up, right? Why not take this opportunity to pack and store any items that can make your rooms look small. You’d be surprised how much larger a room can look by even removing a coffee table or an extra piece of furniture. Investing in a wall mirror can give a room the appearance of being larger than it actually is as well.
The same goes for counter space. Kitchen and bathroom counters should be kept as clean and clutter free as possible. Learn to put away items that you usually leave on the counters, and begin to pack up those pictures and knick-knacks that adorn your mantel.
De-Personalize…To a Degree
Referring to the “Golden Rule” of staging, this may be the time you should consider packing up mementos and family photos that adorn your walls and mantels as well. Be selective, as your home doesn’t have to be completely devoid of your own touch. Remember though, that you want your home to be as inviting to prospective buyers as possible.
Purple and orange may be YOUR favorite colors, but when it comes to buyers, being as neutral as possible is the best way to go when staging your home for sale. Neutral colors gives the buyer an “imaginary canvas” to mentally create their own living space as they walk through your home. In many cases, lighter, neutral colors can make rooms look bigger as well. The cost of a few gallons of paint can make all the difference.
De-Clutter, Then De-Clutter Again!
Over time, no matter how big your house is, it becomes a place for your stuff. If the “stuff” is taking over your living space, then it’s time to consider thinning it out. There’s a rule about clutter: If you haven’t used it for at least a year, do you really need it? Consider donating extra clothing, furnishings, knick-knacks and other items to a charitable organization, or hold a garage sale. The proceeds can go toward your move!
OOO That Smell!
Believe it or not, the sense of smell is the strongest in triggering memories. One thing you don’t want buyers to remember your house for is how it smelled! During the preview phase of your home listing, make sure you take out ALL trash before you leave the house, and give it the “smell test.”
Six Simple Staging Techniques That Won’t Cost You And a Leg
The bottom line when it comes to selling your home is to stage it in a way that opens a buyer’s mind to the possibilities of what they can do after they have made their purchase.
Is it time to sell your home? Contact me for a free, no obligation market analysis of your home’s value.