You’ve made the decision to sell your home. In an ideal world, potential buyers would only need to tour your home briefly to fall in love with it and then fight to sign on the dotted line.
But the reality often demands sellers to put considerable effort into preparing homes for successful listings. One great way to stand out from the pack is to stage your home. Staging your home will not only showcase its best parts, it will also allow a buyer to envision themselves in the space, pushing them closer to a “yes.” Don’t know where to start? Read the tips below for a little guidance.
Fix Flaws Ahead of Time
Like any major commitment in life, selling a home can be trying – if you let it. A great way to get ahead of the stress and anxiety is to start thinking like a buyer. Go around your home and scrutinize each room. Take note of flaws (drywall dented by doorknobs, pencil marks on walls, scuffed floors) that might turn off buyers, and set a schedule for fixing each one.
Stick to the timeline and outsource to experts as needed. By the time actual buyers start touring your home, the one thing they’ll notice is a well-maintained home.
Know Your Buyer
It pays to be knowledgeable about the selling process, and the best place to start is with potential buyers. Build a picture of who’s moving into your area by looking at statistics and local real estate trends. It can inform your home staging in a big way. People weary of the relentless pace in the city may welcome some country charm, while young families can appreciate a home that has kid-friendly spaces.
Judge Your Book by its Cover
With the hubbub of getting your home just right for the listing, it’s easy to put all your energy into making your interior look as impressive as possible. But don’t forget to tend outdoor spaces. They’re still the first impression buyers have of your home, even if they’ve already seen pictures of what’s inside.
Spend a few afternoons enhancing your home’s curb appeal. Tidy up your yard. Maybe install more porch lights or garden lights to make sure your front yard is well lit at night. If you have a green thumb, use it to your advantage and plant perennial flowers – some of the top blooms in the Midwest are hardy geraniums, black-eyed susans, panicle hydrangeas, and Russian sage.
Clean and Declutter, But Don’t Let Your Home Look Sterile
Clutter makes the largest of rooms, closets, and cabinets look cramped. So for the sake of a successful staging, you will have to forego some of your creature comforts. You don’t have to go fully minimalist (unless you want to), but you do have to pack up the things you don’t frequently use. Find a temporary home for them in a storage facility or at a dear friend’s garage.
Once you’ve whittled everything down to the essentials, clean everything twice. Put away personal photos, but keep interesting pieces like paintings or a special piece of furniture in full view. They add character and a lived-in quality to rooms without broadcasting that somebody lives there.
Natural light is still the best lighting treatment out there. Draw blinds and curtains to let in as much light as you can, and choose light neutrals for curtains and drapes to maintain the bright atmosphere the sun brings.
Floor and table lamps are dual-purpose tools for rooms with small windows or none at all. They can serve as accents for the room and extend the limited capabilities of overhead lighting.