Staging your home so that it looks attractive to potential home buyers can add thousands of dollars to the final sale price of your home. When people think of preparing for a home tour, they often think of de-cluttering and cleaning, but staging is more than that. It’s really about making your home an inviting and welcoming place by preparing its interior and exterior so potential buyers can envision their lives in it.
Though you can get great results and end up making more money when you use a professional stager, it’s understandable that some buyers want to save a buck or two. Here are five DIY tips for anyone looking to stage their home themselves.
1. Start on the outside
The exterior of your house, often described as your home’s curb appeal, provides the first impression for any buyer. Make sure buyers feel welcomed by mowing and raking your lawn, trimming your shrubs and bushes, and sweeping your driveway and walkway to tidy everything up.
2. De-personalize and make it spotless
Buyers want to envision themselves in their new home, and if they’re distracted with the details of someone else’s life, it can really detract from the home tour. Remove photographs, general clutter, and distinctive style elements like doll collections or an avant-garde sculpture. Once you’ve made the space more neutral, attack dust bunnies and grime with a vengeance. Steam clean your carpets, pressure wash patios, and scrub the bathroom grout. Cleaning your home can really enhance buyer perception.
3. Arrange your furniture
You’ll want to remove all but a few key pieces of furniture, and preferably those that really define your space. In a living room, that’s probably a couch, a coffee table and two comfortable chairs. In a bedroom, it might be a bed and a bedside table and not much else. It sounds obvious, but make sure the furniture is spotless too. Spot a stained cushion? Turn it over or artfully drape a blanket to conceal it.
4. Pay special attention to rooms with plumbing
Kitchens and bathrooms really sell your home. Because these spaces are sometimes more intimate, make sure they are especially clean and well lit. Move most appliances out of view in your kitchen, leaving one or two out like a blender or a polished toaster. In the bathroom, add a single dish of soap.
5. Emphasize storage
Buyers love storage, so do what you can to emphasize the space in your closets. Remove half the clothes and make sure you can see all the way into the back. Space hangers evenly, match shoes, and make sure everything is generally tidy.
Taking the time to stage your home can make a big difference when people start touring. You may be tempted to go above and beyond, but do your best to keep things clean and simple. When buyers can imagine living life in your home, they’ll be that much closer to making an offer.