Most homeowners can conceptualize the importance of ensuring their home is clean and free from clutter before putting it on the market for sale. However, taking the extra step to stage a home can take a curious buyer, to one that is impressed and possibly bids on the property. According to the National Association of Realtors, staging a home makes a home look more valuable, resulting in not only receiving offers sooner but often those offers are higher than would be received without staging.
A report, the first of its kind by the National Realtors Association, found that 49% of surveyed realtors believe that staging affects the buyer’s view and perception of a home. So, how do you stage your home to sell fast? At first, homeowners may think this is an expensive and time-consuming process. Thankfully, however, there are practical ways of staging each room to galvanize prospective buyers and bidders.
Staging the Living Room
The living room is one of the first places that a would-be buyer is going to enter – it needs to be clean, well-lit, and accessible. When looking for accent pieces or furniture, go for symmetry, while also removing furniture that is obtrusive and in the way. Make traffic patterns though the room apparent and try to remove your personality from the room. Potential buyers want to be able to imagine their own lives in the room rather than feel like they are visiting someone else’s home. Personal items can distract from their imagination. For example, place artwork or a decorative candle holder on an end table rather than a family photo.
Staging the Kitchen
Obviously, this is where people cook and eat – but it shouldn’t look it. Clear everything from counter tops, pack excess dishes, and do an overhaul of your appliances if they seem overly used. Depending on the appliance, scrub it clean or replace it. Most kitchen appliances stay with the home so make them look like ones buyers would want to use. Stainless steel is universally attractive – and you can get the look, at a fraction of the cost, with strategically placed stainless steel film.
Staging the Bedroom
You never know who will be looking to buy your house so keep these rooms gender neutral. Be sure all closets are decluttered, with the majority of clothing stored away. Packed closets will appear smaller so leave only what you must. Standardizing hangers rather than having a mesh of various types will give a cleaner appearance. Place all valuables in a safe place. As homeowners are generally not in the house at the time of showing, be thoughtful about what you leave out.
Staging the Dining Room
Allow potential buyers to entertain the idea of entertaining. Create a space where they can imagine hosting a dinner party or event. Decorate the table as if you are expecting guests and accent how the room could be not only a place to eat but the focal point of an evening.
Staging the Bathroom
In the bathroom, eliminate personal care and cleaning products, other than decorative items such as fancy soaps for display. Clear off counters and the backs of toilets, minimalize cabinet items. Scrub toilets, showers, and tubs to remove stains and, if necessary, consider replacements. It may also be prudent to repaint walls if moisture has warped the paint over the years or to replace worn taps or cabinet hardware. Display fluffy white towels to give the room a spa feeling.
The 3 Areas of Focus When Staging Your Home
Regardless of the room, there are three distinct factors that you need to focus on: lighting, creating a blank canvas, and minor but obvious upgrades.
Lighting accentuates the features of any room, and is crucial even in places that may be a bit dark, like the basement. The lighting should complement a blank canvas, where personalized products, furniture, and other items are minimized, allowing potential buyers to visualize their own items in the space. Minor but apparent upgrades will give you the most bang for your buck. In most cases, there’s no need to tear down walls, replace an entire shower or make other costly repairs. A fresh paint job, retiling or refurbishing old floors, installing recessed lighting, for example, are all upgrades that are appreciated by home buyers.
These suggestions are based on the assumption that you are targeting the traditional market. If you own a home that needs significant repairs that you don’t wish to, or cannot afford to make there is another option. Real estate investment companies, such as Emmaus Property Investments, LLC buy houses in as-is condition. There are no repairs to make, no updates required and no staging necessary. Even if you need to sell your house due to divorce, are facing foreclosure or bankruptcy, you have options. If you want to sell your house fast but don’t think that you can, give Emmaus Property investments a call at 912-663-6460 and see how they may still be able to buy your house quickly.
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