Authored by Veronica Bergschneider in Real Estate
Published on 04-23-2009
Home staging is perhaps the last step in making a house ready to sell. Without it, even a good real estate agent will have difficulty in helping the client sell a property. It works by using the furniture and decorative items in the home or rented items to make the home look its best.
First of all, make sure the outside of the home is at its best.
Repaint the front door and make even its original color brighter, since faded paint detracts from interest in the property. Clean all of the windows until they sparkle to allow light inside and show off the beauty of the home. Plant seasonal plants, trim trees and hedges, and clear out the weeds. Make walkways and driveways free of clutter so buyers see a safe home.
In the house and garage or basement, make sure to get rid of clutter.
Donate to charity items that are no longer needed and throw away things that can not be used again. For the overabundance of things that have sentimental value or will definitely be used later, consider renting a storage unit or storing the items in another location. Pare down the decoration of the home to essential furniture, window treatments and décor, as less truly is more when a potential buyer looks at the house. For smaller items that may be needed between open house dates, try creative containers in decorative colors or arranging prized books and artistic objects on shelves in various rooms.
After storing extra furniture offsite, consider trying new locations in the rooms for the pieces that stay. Professional home stagers recommend moving furniture away from walls whenever possible. This, in addition to light colors of paint on the walls, makes the room appear bigger. Thus, the space becomes more inviting to many, as rooms with larger appearances invite the imagination of the possible buyer to think about ways of decorating the space. Allowing such creativity often encourages multiple buyers to consider the property and can increase the sale price through bids going higher.
Also along the lines of redecorating, make sure spaces not used before take on a purpose. Many homebuyers have fantasies such as an exercise room or hobby room. Once the clutter is gone from what may have been a storage room, use existing furniture from other rooms to show how a spare room could become an office or comfortable guest room.
In the process of cleaning windows so the light shines in, remember that light attracts many people by showing off the house at its best. Be sure key windows have curtains and blinds in light colors to allow the maximum natural light in and show off decorations at their best.
Replace dim light bulbs with nice bright ones to help prospective buyers see the decoration of rooms not bathed in natural light. If the budget allows, installing track or fluorescent lighting helps immensely by providing more light than incandescent due to greater numbers of brighter bulbs.