There are a lot of steps involved in selling your home, and one of the most important is to make it look as attractive as possible to potential buyers. Many buyers do this by going through a process known as home staging. From tending the lawn to paint touch-ups to rearranging furniture, home staging is meant to make your home look the best it can to buyers and their agents.
The process can be involved, time-consuming, and expensive, however. The average cost can range from $500 to $2,000 or more, depending on the size of your home and how much work is needed. It is thus natural to ask whether it’s a step you can skip.
This guide will explain what is involved in home staging, why it’s needed, and some tips for doing it right.
Why Stage Your Home?
Home staging is the art of decorating, repairing, and decluttering a home to prepare it for sale. This can be as involved as making major repairs or as simple as moving around some furniture, and there are a few things to keep in mind:
The main goal is to make the home – inside and out – as appealing as possible to the widest range of possible buyers.
Aesthetics make a difference when it comes to buying and selling a home.
Home staging allows buyers to envision your space as their space and visualize it as their future home.
Many buyers have trouble doing that with a home that is cluttered or looks like someone else’s house they’re just visiting.
According to the National Association of Realtors’ Staging Stats report, 83% of buyers’ agents say staging a home makes it easier for buyers to envision the space as their own.
Home staging also increases the dollar value offered for the home, according to 44% of buyers’ agents.
Home staging reduces the time the listing is on the market. Any seller who wants to get more for their home in a shorter amount of time, then, should seriously consider staging.
7 Techniques for Successful Home Staging
It is important to do a thorough job of home staging before selling, but it doesn’t have to cost a lot of money. Some people choose to hire professional stagers, but there’s a lot you can do on your own:
1. Add Curb Appeal
The exterior of your home and your lawn are the first things potential buyers will see, and you’ll want to make a good impression. Trimming hedges, cutting grass, filling in flower beds, and adding or replacing mulch are all simple ways you can spruce up your home’s curb appeal. Make sure any window boxes have fresh flowers or greenery. Tidy up the front porch or entryway by sweeping away excess dirt or leaves.
2. Get Rid of Clutter
One of the most basic ways to make your space more appealing to buyers is to get rid of clutter. Begin packing up the things you don’t use regularly and moving them to storage or your new home. You may also need to remove excess furniture. When professional stagers stage a home, they often remove as much as half the furniture. You want buyers to be able to move around easily and comfortably. And less furniture in a room can make it look bigger.
3. Reposition Furniture
Consider repositioning the pieces left in each room. You will want to create a flow through every room, making sure closets and doorways are easily accessible.
4. Retouch and Repair
It is not necessary to invest in major upgrades to stage your home. It’s a good idea, however, to address minor issues such as marks on walls, scuffs, or recaulking. Marks on walls can generally be cleaned off, whereas holes or scuffs may need to be patched and painted. Paint touch-ups throughout your home can go a long way.
5. De-Personalize the Space
Approach your home staging by thinking of it as a blank canvas. Buyers want to picture themselves in the home, and personal items can distract from that feeling. Experts recommend taking down family photos, kids’ artwork, framed diplomas, and personal collections. Removing all reminders that the house belongs to someone else will help buyers imagine themselves in the space.
6. Keep It Neutral
There is nothing wrong with bold paint colors, but when it comes to open houses, it’s best to cover any bright hues with a neutral shade like white, gray, or beige. This doesn’t mean that rooms have to be devoid of color or personality – you can still add colorful fabrics, pillows, art prints, or plants. It is best to go with a neutral shade, though, when it comes to walls.
7. Highlight Design Features
Fireplaces, built-in bookshelves, and other standout design details are potential selling points for your home. You will want to accentuate these areas when staging your space. Consider arranging the furniture to make the fireplace the focal point. Do not overcrowd the mantle with objects or photos. Perhaps hang one framed work of art or an oversize mirror.
You want to keep the homes as bright and approachable as possible. Bookshelves or other built-in shelving should have only minimal books or knick knacks, for example. Shelves shouldn’t be bare, but you don’t want them to look cluttered either.
Details Go a Long Way
Once you’ve reduced clutter, rearranged the furniture, and done the other major steps above, there are still some smaller things that can make a difference. Be sure to add that final “wow” factor with these last-minute touches:
Inviting aromas can make a big difference when you walk into a space. Add an air freshener or diffuser to your entryway and be sure to address any odors from pets or musty basements.
Fresh Flowers or Plants
These can add a pop of color and make your space feel warm and welcoming.
Open curtains and blinds to let in as much light as possible. Bright spaces are appealing, and natural light can make a room feel more spacious.
With a little time and effort, your home can become a tasteful canvas upon which buyers can project their own personal preferences and style. Getting rid of clutter, keeping things neutral, and adding some homey final touches will help buyers see the potential in your home.
Selling a Home in Maryland
The pros at Signature Home Sales can help you get the best price if you’re selling a home in Maryland. Our agents have over a decade of experience listing and prepping homes to achieve the best results, and our staged listings are under contract an average of 10 days after the list date. That is why we offer our seller clients complimentary home staging.
Contact Signature Home Sales today to discuss how we can assist you.