The Cheat Sheet to Home Staging
Many would-be sellers are struggling to make their properties stand out in today’s real-estate market. But while the economic head winds are beyond property owners’ control, you can dramatically improve your chances of making a sale by devoting attention to an often-overlooked aspect of real-estate selling: home staging. The goal of home staging is for the buyer to mentally move in. If they cannot mentally feel and see themselves living here, you’ve lost them. Here are six simple tips to help home sellers better position themselves in a sluggish market.
Get them Inside
The first thing a prospective buyer notices about a home is not the living room but the front yard. You have to stage the outside to get them inside. Cut the grass, trim the hedges, rake those leaves, sweep the sidewalks and power-wash the driveway. Make sure you don’t have too many potted plants scattered around the property. Be sure the plants you have are not dead. You want bight and lively plants!
Pretend you are Camping
A cluttered room will appear too small to buyers. Go through each room of the house and divide your belongings into two piles: “keep” and “give up.” Items in the “keep” pile will be used to stage the room, while those in the “give up” pile should be stored elsewhere. Pretend you are camping. When you go camping, you don’t take all those books, right? The de-cluttered rooms may appear bare to the seller, but the buyer won’t think so. You are not selling your things. You are selling the space. Buyers cannot visualize when there is too much stuff in the room.” De-cluttering a home’s outdoor spaces is important, too.
Work in Ones or Threes
You would place three items — say, a lamp, a plant and a book — on top of a larger hard surface, such as an end table. The three items should be closely grouped in a triangle. For hard surfaces with less area, however, a single item will do.
Decide from the Doorway
Since would-be buyers will get their first impression of each room from the doorway, homeowners should use that perspective to judge their staging work. Do your work, go back to the doorway. Do some more, go back to the doorway. That way, you’ll be better able to ensure that each room appeals to buyers.
A properly staged home should be immaculate — Q-Tip clean. The purpose of ensuring the house is spotless is more than simply making it presentable. If a home is unkempt, a buyer will wonder what other, less visible problems may come with the property.