Preparing a Home for Staging

Home staging is a valuable marketing tool to help sell a home. In a good or bad housing market, some studies have shown that staged homes can add between 10 and 15 percent to the sale price of many homes. Sellers who don’t take the time to properly stage may end up with their house on the market for longer periods of time, and agreeing to a lower selling price. Sellers may have their work cut out for them, but when you talk in dollars, your seller can make thousands more and sell their home faster by staging.

Follow These 7 Tips to Prepare a Home For Staging

1. SIMPLIFY LIVING SPACES – Organize & Declutter
Have the seller remove and store unnecessary furnishings to allow better traffic flow in each room. Clear off kitchen countertops and free the bathroom of any personal toiletries which overall will portray a more spacious environment. Organize and declutter shelves, closets and cabinets. Pack away family portraits and other personal items that may portray a seller’s personality so it is easier for a potential buyer to see themselves living in the home.

2. THINK FRESH – Clean & Neutralize
The house cannot be too clean especially in the bathrooms. Period! A good cleaning company is wise to recommend to your seller. Remember that buyers may poke into places that casual visitors wouldn’t, so make sure out-of-the-way spots are cleaned too. Keep blinds and curtains open to let in as much natural light as possible. Also, if any of the rooms in the home are painted a deep exotic or bright neon color then it is best to neutralize each room by having walls painted a nice warm color.

3. ASSESS REPAIRS – Update & Replace
Do a walk through of the home with the seller and make note of flaws like stains on carpets, holes in walls, loose cabinet knobs, burnt out light bulbs, etc that can easily be repaired or replaced. Review with the seller that all major appliances as well as the ac/heat, toilets, sinks, w/d, and water heater are in good working order. Don’t forget about the exterior of the home! The more repairs that are taken care of before listing the home the less the buyer will request during the inspection period and the more move-in ready the home.

4. GO GREEN – Curb Appeal
The first impression a potential home buyer will have of a house will be of the exterior, so nice curb appeal is important. A fresh coat of paint on the front door, a nicely trimmed lawn, and fresh flowers in a garden or potted plants on the front porch are easy and soothing to the eye. Are those house numbers visible?

5. INITIATE AN EVALUATION – Feedback & Review
Invite agents to come preview the home before it gets listed. They will be another set of crucial eyes for you when viewing the home and what they notice is what buyers will notice too. Take honest notes of what they like and what they dislike and review with the seller.

Agents and sellers want prospective buyers to come into a warm and inviting home that has been beautifully staged where they can imagine how the house would look if it were theirs.

7. GO LIST THE HOME! – Market & Sell
The seller now has a clutter free, clean, attractive and staged listing that shows like a model home and is ready to be listed for sale to “wow” the broadest range of potential buyers. This allows the agent to get the home listed and make a great first impression with agent caravans and open houses. Long gone is the sit-back-and-see-what-happens way of selling a house.