Guest Blogger #863, Entry #2075, February 6, 2012
When you’ve lived in a home for a while, it’s all too easy to put the blinders on and overlook the little flaws that you face each day. And you certainly ignore the clutter, the knickknacks, and all of the personal items that make the space your own. But prospective home buyers touring your space will see every flaw and tchotchke in high relief, and rather than the “little” things that you barely notice anymore, buyers will only see glaring examples of why your house cannot be their home. However, you don’t necessarily have to clear out all of your stuff or remodel the home in order to sell it. With a few creative staging strategies up your sleeve you can spiff up the appearance of your home with very little expenditure of time or money. Here are some tips and tricks to help you unload your property faster.
Image via: David Olson Architect
Clear the clutter.
You may or may not be aware of the fact that people entering your home are trying to picture their own possession in the space. They are also trying to see the potential for turning your home into a modern, stylish property that can benefit them for years to come. You need to help them out a little, though. If the home is full of your stuff it’s going to be a lot harder for prospective buyers to see past it to the potential underneath. So clear out the obvious signs of habitation (family photos and other personal items, dishes and laundry, etc.) and then consider removing a few pieces of furniture in order to create a cleaner palette and more space.
There are few ways to update the look of your space that are easier and cheaper than a fresh coat of paint. Your best bet for staging is to go with warm, neutral shades throughout most of the house for a clean look that will act as a blank canvas for your other staging efforts. You might be a bit bolder by choosing a pale pastel for a powder room or a trendy tone for an accent wall in the bedroom or living room, but in most cases you’ll want to shy away from bright wall colors since they may limit the appeal for some buyers.
Is there anything worse than walking into a home plagued by the odors of old cooking, cigarette smoke, or even someone else’s perfume or personal musk? You want your home to smell clean and new, so air the place out, clean carpets, drapes, and any plush material that could hold onto odor, and then add some common scents like lemon cleanser, cut roses, or baking cookies. Wowing visually is a must, but you should also consider the air quality in your home if you want to put potential buyers at ease and make the space more appealing.
Image via: Axis Mundi
Once you’ve cleansed the palette and grouped the furniture appropriately, it’s time to add a few well-placed accessories that will help to complete your staging efforts. If you’ve gone pretty neutral, add a few pops of color with throw pillows, lamps, vases, and the like. Then make sure to provide ample (but soft) lighting to give your interior a warm and inviting glow.
Prospective buyers are going to make a snap judgment concerning your home before they even set foot inside, so you need to make a good first impression. But rather than redoing the entire exterior, consider addressing glaring flaws. Trim back overgrown plants, fill in dead spots on the lawn, add a few blooms, and think about slapping a fresh coat of paint on the façade. Your New York, Minneapolis, or San Francisco real estate agent can no doubt help you to see the flaws in your staging, but don’t forget to include curb appeal in your efforts.
For more home staging ideas on Stagetecture, click here.