Staging Your Home to Sell
Two months ago, I was faced with having to put my house on the market. With a downturned economy and a tight timeline to sell, the odds were stacked against me. Adding to the challenge of selling my home was the time of year I entered the market. Summer is always busy in our area – with lots of relocations and numerous homes going up for sale. Competition was a real factor. One question continued to haunt me -“how can I make my house stand out from the crowd?” I began focusing my energy on finding an answer.
In my spare time, I love to read real estate & home décor related magazines and several of these publications stressed the importance of properly “staging” your home before placing it on the market. One of the most consistent recommendations for successfully staging your home is to de-clutter & organize. This process highlights your home’s best features, creates a more open feel and presents a clean & fresh environment for potential buyers. In fact, this step is so important that it has created a niche industry with professionals who do just that for a living. With this little secret weapon in my arsenal, I decided to tackle staging my home. I had recently joined the team of Amazing Spaces Storage Centers and was quickly learning about the benefits self-storage offers during a move. In fact at Amazing Spaces, we were in the middle of the “Take Back Your Home” event, a campaign which highlighted the benefits of clearing out items that homes tend to collect, and that is exactly what I decided to do.
The real estate market is also seeing an uptick in homes being listed for sale. Perhaps you’re among the many homeowners who have held off on listing until now and you may also be wondering how you can get the most for your home. One of the best and most cost effective ways to do this is through staging your home to sell.
Staging your home to sell might seem like an easy task, but there are a lot of important key points that are often overlooked- some of which you may have encountered in past home searching situations. So, what can you do when staging your home? Below are a few tips, hints, and ideas for sprucing up and cleaning out your home to create a great first impression for the buyers.
Staging Tip #1: Marie Kondo It: Minimize & Declutter
One of the first steps to staging your home is to minimize what’s in it! Your goal is to depersonalize your home so that buyers can view it as their potential home. Prospective buyers won’t be able to picture themselves in the house if they’re surrounded by your family photos and other personal items. This is where moving boxes and packing tape come in handy! Ridding your home of clutter is a simple way to get buyers to focus on the actual house. After years of living in the same home, clutter collects in such a way that may not be evident to the homeowner. This is where you can take a moment to decide if something can be stored or donated. Try to take as little clutter with you to your new home as possible! For more de-cluttering tips, click here.
This step not only means trinkets and clutter on the counters but also unnecessary furniture that takes up space. Evaluate each room to determine what is essential and what’s extra. Then, place the extra items into storage. One of the challenges with this, is the potential buyer gets to see ALL of your home, so, where do you even put these items? We can help! We have storage solutions that accommodate all of your Personal Self Storage needs! With over 30 different sized units, you are sure to find a space that fits your needs and budget.
Staging Tip #2: Create a Room that Flows
Creating proper room flow can be accomplished in a variety of ways, one of which is to simply rearrange the furniture. Pull furnishings away from the walls and create a conversation style setup in the center of the room. This will open up the room and create the illusion that it’s actually larger than it is.
Tour a few model homes to see how the rooms are furnished. Rearrange the rooms in your home to make sure each room has a distinct, useful purpose. Additionally, by creating a cozy setup near the fireplace or a window with natural light, it is certainly more appealing to the potential buyer than a room full of stiff furniture against the walls. Creating inviting little spaces can also increase appeal. For instance, don’t feel locked into keeping all your furniture exactly where it is! If you have a small table, stage it as a desk in a bright corner of the room and top with a bouquet of flowers.
Staging Tip #3: Lighten Up Each Room with Proper Lighting
Proper lighting in your space can make all the difference! A good rule of thumb is to aim for a total of 100 watts per every 50 square feet. Different types of lighting is also important. Be sure to select the right type for the right room! Ambient, task and accent lighting are all essential in your different spaces. Check out this article on Lighting Tips from our friends at Lowe’s.
Staging Tip #4: A Coat of Fresh Paint Can Make the Sale
It’s amazing what a difference a fresh coat of paint on the walls can make! Shy away from abrasive colors and instead opt for warm, neutral hues. Fresh, neutral paint on the walls, trim, and doors is also a huge selling point. It makes everything appear clean and new and gives the buyer a fresh canvas to start on. One of our favorite neutrals is Shaker Beige from Benjamin Moore. It reminds us of a cozy beach hide away, and who wouldn’t love that?!
Staging Tip #5: Use Staging Accessories Wisely and Sparingly
Did you know that accessories are best when paired in odd numbers, preferably in groups of 3? Furthermore, group items of like color, shape and texture together! Your coffee table and mantle will invite the viewer in when items are positioned and staged correctly. Just be sure to only have only enough accessories to make a statement, but not overdo it. This goes back to our first point, you want to eliminate clutter!
Staging Tip #6: Keep It Sparkling Clean
Before listing, you’ll want to make sure your rooms are sparkling clean! No one wants to look at a dirty home, especially not prospective buyers. This means it’s more than just a simple surface dusting. Wipe down the baseboards, doors, and window sills. When buyers see an unkempt home or smell something funky when they first walk in, they become turned off immediately. You may want to consider having the house professionally cleaned so that everything is spotless and fresh for the showings.
Staging Tip #7: Enhance the Outside
Don’t overlook the home’s exterior when selling. Curb appeal is just as important as cleaning the inside of the home and it’s the buyer’s first impression. Mow the lawn, make sure the sidewalk and driveway are free of clutter and debris, and ensure the house number is easily visible. It may also be beneficial to pressure-clean the exterior of your home, driveway and sidewalk. Mulch is also a cheap solution for covering eyesore areas.
As for me, I reserved my first storage unit at our Woodlands property. Since I was new to the storage industry, I got to test out our management team’s knowledge regarding space, climate control, boxes, packing supplies etc. first hand. After asking a few questions, like what type of items I would be storing, how many rooms of furniture were in my home, etc. – they helped me select the perfect size unit and all the packing supplies for my new project.
Over the course of two weekends, I de-cluttered and organized my heart out. My cabinets, closets, and garage were cleared of any unnecessary items. Since I reserved my storage space ahead of time, I was able to take my time and really sort through everything. As I completed each room, the items were taken to my unit, and I enjoyed the feeling of a “job well done.”
As part of marketing my home, a professional photographer came in and took pictures for flyers, websites and various real estate publications. With the rooms more organized and cleared of clutter, the photos came out great. I had peace of mind that my home was at its best and my items were safe and secure with Amazing Spaces. My home hit the market the second week in June and within 4 weeks I had three offers! The feedback on how well the home showed was consistent – the “staging” process really paid off!
Not only did storing my extra items help me sell my house in record time, it also relieved stress during the final move out. Since my home had already been de-cluttered & organized, packing the remaining items was a breeze! I am a true believer in the value of storage – it really made an AMAZING difference during my move!
I hope this article gave you some amazing ideas for staging your home to sell and helps you close the deal in the most amazing fashion. Remember, at Amazing Spaces, we work closely with home owners who are going through the selling and buying process and we’d love to speak with you! Allow our A-Team to assist you in your next staging project, give us a call today, 281-378-4343!