When you’re preparing to list your home for sale, your real estate agent may suggest that you stage your home. Staging your home means that you work to present your house in the best way possible for potential buyers to see. Think of staging your home as a way for your house to make a positive first impression. Perceived value can weigh heavily on your end result, but you can increase perceived value in a multitude of ways. Here’s what you need to know about staging your house for sale.
Dress your house for success from the outside in. In other words, curb appeal comes first. When a buyer pulls up in front of your house, their first impression is going to influence their entire viewing experience. If the house is “quaint, charming, cute” or otherwise exciting to the buyer, that buyer is going to eagerly hope for more of the same inside. However, if a buyer is put off by their first impression, they go in anticipating disappointment.
To stage the outside of your home, consider giving your home’s exterior a good spray-washing or even a fresh coat of paint. Replace any bent or torn screens. If doorknobs are rusty or worn, replace them. Make sure your lawn is free of weeds, freshly manicured and that bushes and shrubs are trimmed. Remove any toys, ornaments, or debris from the yard. If your house has a porch, make sure it’s in the best condition possible. Consider adding potted flowers near the door for a pop of color and a tantalizing aroma upon entry.
With the outside prepped and prettied, move to the home’s interior. Begin with depersonalizing. This may be the hardest part, but can also help prepare you for your upcoming move. Begin by removing personal items such as pictures, collectibles, political paraphernalia, items that make religious statements, or anything that may make the buyers feel like guests in your home. Decor should be “generic”, meaning it would fit in anyone’s house, not specific to you and your household.
Next, de-clutter. Go through every item in your house and determine whether or not you’ll be using that item in the next 90 days. If you won’t use it, either eliminate it or pack it away. Clear up any stacks of papers, piles of laundry, scattered toys, or any other belongings that may make the environment look disorganized. Organize the cupboards by storing away any dishes you won’t need during the process of selling your house. Then, consider the furniture. Over-stuffed or large furnishings can make rooms look smaller than they are. To give the house the feeling of being spacious, reduce furnishings to the bare minimum, and consider placing furniture away from the walls and arranged in conversational areas.
Give the house a good scrub. Clean from ceiling vents and fans to floorboards, and everything in between. Dirt, dinginess, stains, and grime will all turn off potential buyers. A crisp, clean environment, on the other hand, is inviting. Don’t forget to tidy the cabinets, closets, toilet bases, and under the sinks. Check for leaks and damp areas under the sinks. Leaky pipes not only indicate a problem with the condition of the house, but can also create unwelcome odors. Pay particular attention to the kitchen and bathrooms as these are important features to buyers.
With decluttering, depersonalizing, and cleaning finished, check out the walls. If cleaning didn’t remove the dingy aesthetic of the walls, or if the paint is too vibrant, you may need a fresh coat of paint. Paint colors should be muted neutrals, meaning tan, gray, or light green. If carpets are stained and torn, consider replacing. Buyers are far more attracted to new carpet than they are to a carpet allowance worked into the price. Also, make sure there are no defects in the condition of the home’s major systems and structure. Not only will broken or tattered materials lessen the perceived value of the house, but also the actual value determined by an appraisal and inspection.
When your home is clean, bright, airy, and organized from the outside in, buyers are able to envision themselves occupying the space without thinking about fixer-upper projects. A bit of staging can go a long way in the successful sale of your house.
Your real estate agent is the best source of information about the local community and real estate topics. Give Marbelia Murillo a call today at 704-622-0602 to learn more about local areas, discuss selling a house, or tour available homes for sale.