Now that you have decided to sell your home, found the best real estate agent, and have taken the steps to list your house for sale, what’s next? Let’s talk about “What to Expect When Selling a Home: Staging Your Home to Sell.”
What is home staging? It can take many forms, but to stage a home basically means to emphasize the best features of your home, usually through furniture placement and décor, to appeal to the widest range of potential buyers.
What are the pros and cons of home staging? Most real estate agents will tell you that a staged home will generally sell faster and for more money. A lot of this has to do with the buyers’ expectations; many buyers are looking for a home they can envision themselves living in comfortably (think model home). Some buyers may be able to look past the staging (or lack thereof), but in a seller’s market where buyers are paying top dollar, buyer standards tend to be high.
So what’s the downside? Hiring a professional home stager or interior designer can be expensive. To lessen that cost, some professional stagers can work with the homeowner’s existing furniture and décor, but many prefer to use their own. However, some real estate agents can work with sellers and stagers to deduct the cost of home staging from the sales price, which saves the seller from having to pay this expense out of pocket before the sale. (Read more about how R.B. Haley helps sellers with home staging).
How do I stage a home to sell? First, start by making sure your home is ready to list (in other words, de-clutter, depersonalize, and thoroughly clean). Beyond that, here are some basic home staging tips.
- Staging the kitchen: Clear the counter tops (leaving out no more than two small appliances), accentuate with fresh flowers, a cookbook, or fruit bowl, and keep the cabinets, drawers, and pantry neat and organized. (Think pretty, not practical.)
- Staging the living/family room: Place the furniture with the focal point in mind. Group seating for conversations but allow plenty of space to move around the room (this may require removing items). Also, limit items on shelves and replace personal photos with hanging art.
- Staging the bedroom: Keep it simple and relaxing (think hotel room). Bedding should be crisp with plenty of pillows. Adding a headboard can be an inexpensive way to add some elegance. Clear dressers of personal items leaving just one or two decorative items. Be sure closets are organized and offer plenty of space.
- Staging overall: The goal is warm and inviting. Use neutral colors, maximize space, allow plenty of natural light, and promote pleasant aromas.
- Staging outside: Enhance curb appeal by painting the front door, updating the outdoor lighting fixture(s), and accenting the walkway with flowers to make the entry more welcoming. Stage the outdoor furniture in the back yard or patio by opening any shade umbrellas, adding accent pillows to chairs, and placing settings at the table). Landscaping should be clean and neat (such as fresh wood chips and flowers).
If you’re still not sure about staging your home to sell, ask your real estate agent. He or she will know what types of buyers you are trying to appeal to and should have some suggestions about what buyers value. And, if you need a referral to a professional home stager in the San Diego area, give R.B. Haley a call.
Keep an eye out for our next article, which will be covering the next stage in the selling process- negotiating an offer.
Investing in YOUR Future,
R.B. Haley Fine Homes and Estates
Did we miss anything? Feel free add comments below with some of your great ideas and/or feedback. Thanks for your input and please remember to share!
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