When it comes to selling, a big word many sellers hear is “staging”. And afterwards come many questions. What is staging? Do I have to hire someone to do it? Why do I even need to stage my home? Staging can be influential in selling your home and it doesn’t have to be a long process that breaks the bank!
What is Staging?
Home staging is when you prepare your home for sale both inside and out, focusing on the appearance and atmosphere it creates for the potential buyers. Staging is like putting on your home’s best outfit for picture day. When adding small touches to your home before listing it, staging helps the potential buyer get the feel that it’s more than just a building for sale, but a home. A place where they can live and raise a family, bond with roommates, or entertain on holidays.
Benefits of Staging
Like I said, staging can be influential in selling your home. Ask yourself, “Would I buy my home as it is now?” If the answer is “no”, then staging can help change the answer to “yes”. Going through the staging process will help you pack up for moving, de-clutter and organize, and gather items for sale or donation prior to leaving, smoothing out the transition process. Staging will also make your home look its best for photos, videos, open houses, and showings. Staging will also make it more likely that your home won’t stay on the market forever because it makes your home more desirable and can help the sale move along faster.
Staging Inside Your Home
A good place to start is with clutter. Move throughout the house starting in the entry way, moving through kitchen, dining, and living spaces, bedrooms, bathrooms, and storage rooms, basements, and garages. Hide clutter such as shelves and racks, countertop appliances, self-care and beauty items, personal items and toys, pet stuff, and bins, baskets, and boxes. Empty trash cans, clear your mud room or foyer area, put away all evidence of pets, store appliances and personal effects and make small cosmetic repairs or replacements. Potential buyers don’t want to see evidence of heavy living or messes when looking at pictures or walking through your home during a showing.
In the kitchen, clear the counters. Leave small items like flowers, candles, cookbooks, and spice racks. Just be sure to show that the space can be beautiful and functional for potential buyers. Before open houses and showings, empty trash, clean and store all dishes, and bake cookies or brownies to leave a pleasant but not overwhelming scent for potential buyers. Place a small vase of flowers on dining area tables and make sure everything in clean and all light bulbs are working.
In the living areas, clean up clutter, toys, gaming consoles, and entertainment materials. Place some throw pillows and lamps throughout. Add a small candle or scented device in an inconspicuous place. Make sure furniture is placed so that the room looks spacious and hide cords and antennas. Put away all pet toys, beds, leashes and collars, and food and water bowls.
In bedrooms, make sure beds are made, clothes and shoes are stored out of sight, and all personal items are put away. Clear vanities, dressers, and side tables of personal care items. Place a small stack of books, a small vase of flowers, a picture frame or two, or a candle on dressers or side tables. Place lamps and open windows to increase light throughout.
In bathrooms, make sure everything is clean including the toilets and showers/ bathtubs. Place bath mats and hand towels. Take off toilet lid covers and remove dirty towels, shampoo and soap bottles, razors, toothbrushes, and tub toys. Clean soap dispensers and toothbrush holders. Add a candle or scent device with a subtle scent and make sure all mirrors are clean. Empty trash and clean floors.
Staging Outside Your Home
When it comes to the outside appearance, this is the first thing that potential buyers see when approaching your home. You want your landscaping, patio and deck areas, and outdoor decorations to look nice and evoke a pleasant feeling in the buyers.
For landscaping, make sure grass is mowed and edged, bushes are trimmed, and weeds are removed. Make sure rocks, bricks, stones, and mulching are fresh and look appealing. Store hoses, gardening tools, and lawn mowers. You can add some small flowers or potted plants to add a special touch.
For patios or decks, make sure they are swept, cobwebs are removed, and surfaces are power washed and clean if needed. If your deck or patio need a new coat of stain or sealant, now is a good time to do so! Make sure outdoor furniture is clean, including cushions, and placed to make the area seem large. Clear and store toys, tools, bikes and scooters, sprinklers, and trash cans. Add some plants, hanging baskets, rugs, or new cushions for an updated feel.
Make sure all animal waste is cleaned and disposed properly. Store trash cans away from high traffic areas to avoid lingering outdoor smells. Clean forgotten areas like mailboxes, house numbers, lighting fixtures, and plant pots. If you have a flag pole, add a nice, new flag! If there are areas that need some repair or fresh costa of paint, do it now! Make sure shutters and window screens are clean and in proper place and replace old, dull light bulbs. You can add a new doormat or clean the one you already have!
All of these things can easily be done with things you already have around the house, or cheaply. These small changes can make a large difference in the appearance of your home and really help get the best offers from potential buyers. And when it’s time for pictures, showings, and open houses, your home will stand out against others that weren’t staged prior! And the small repairs and replacements? They’ll add value to your home when it comes to buyers making an offer because the new owners won’t have to do them when the home is theirs!
If you’re in Louisville or surrounding areas, The Elizabeth Monarch Group is the team of experienced Realtors that will help you through the entire process! Whether you’re buying or selling, The Elizabeth Monarch Group will be there from listing to closing and beyond! We provide buyers and sellers with professional service throughout the buying and selling process and help with things such as repairs, upkeep, lender and title company recommendation, and more with our Trusted Affiliates program. We can even connect you with a professional team of staging experts! If you’re in the market to sell or buy a home, contact us today! Check out our website at www.theelizabethmonarchgroup.com!