Location, price and condition are the three keys to selling a house. You can sell a house in any condition if you are not worried about how much you are going to get for the house. However, for most people they want to get the highest price for their house as possible. One of the ways you can get the most money out of your house is through staging.
Let’s take a moment to look at things through a typical buyer’s eyes as they view houses that are not staged.
- They cannot see beyond how a house is decorated.Maybe there is too much furniture in the room or it is not located in the right place in the room.
- They have difficulties seeing the bones of a house or the potential of a house because of the decor, the clutter and the personal pictures on the walls.
- If a room is empty, some buyers have trouble understanding what the room is for or if they can fit their furniture in a room. They have problems with this because there is no point of reference in the room (a piece of furniture) to get a feel for the space.
- If the room has bad carpet or a paint color that is not neutral, they will automatically start deducting how much it will cost to replace carpet and paint. They will start deducting this off of the list price.
- Most buyers want a move in ready house. They do not want to lift a finger when they move in. They do not want to have to paint, make a repair or put in new carpet after they own the house.
Most sellers can relate to how a typical buyer feels because they have either bought a home themselves or they are getting ready to by a new home. To ensure the seller gets the most money for their house, then staging is recommended to help the typical buyer overcome the issues listed above.
Staging all about making your home as neutral as possible to appeal to the most buyers as possible and to make the house memorable to those buyers. Here are some tips on how to get started with staging.
- Remove all personal pictures of family, friends and pets. Remove the majority of the pictures off your wall. Leave larger wall decor in key areas such as above a fire place or above a bed. Make sure they are neutral such as a mirror or metal wall décor. You want the buyer looking at the house not the pictures, people and pets that live there.
- Declutter – When you get ready to sell this is the perfect time to sell or donate extra items that you do not need any more. Store items that you can live without for a while such as pictures or extra kitchen appliances, plates, glasses etc.
- Paint – if the paint inside your house looks worn or if you have bright or really dark colors, then consider painting in a neutral color such as beige or tan. One of my favorite neutral colors is Sherwin Williams Sand Dollar. These neutral colors will appeal to a vast majority of buyers.
- If the carpet is worn out, then go ahead and replace it. If it needs stretching, go ahead and stretch it. A buyer will deduct way more money off the list price than it will cost to replace the carpet. Also in the buyer mind they may perceive this as a seller not taking care of their house and wonder what else has the seller not taken care of. All of this puts doubt in their mind on the condition of the house.
- Open curtains and blinds.Add lighting such as torchiere floor lamps to brighten up a dark corner. Add lamps to side tables and turn them on when you have a showing.
- Rearrange furniture so that it is a focal point in the room when you enter that room. Beds should be placed on the first large wall you see when you enter the room. Fire places should be the main focal point when entering in to a family room. Store any extra furniture or larger pieces that make the room feel too small. Check out the National Association of Realtors® 2015 profile of home staging to see which rooms are the most important to stage first.
If you take these staging tips into consideration, you will get the most value out of your house and will sell it faster.
Finally, how you live when your house is not on the market is not the same of how you live when your house is on the market. The house must be kept clean, cutter free and ready to show at a moment’s notice. I understand that this can be tiresome, daunting and troublesome but it will get you to your goal faster!