7 fail-safe home staging tips every seller should do
So you have decided to sell your home. You may even have started the marketing process or appointed an estate agent to assist you in the marketing efforts.
However, if you are looking to attract the best buyers with the best offers there are certain things you as a seller should be doing. Starting with setting the stage for sales.
While the cost of professional staging services remains out of reach for most homeowners, following some basic tips before a single photograph of your home is taken or a single prospective buyer sets foot in your home can greatly increase your chances of achieving a better price in a faster time frame.
Like it or not the very first impression any person gets of your home is that of the exterior. This oft-forgotten part of real estate can literally be the difference between a knock on your door and a sour-faced drive-by; especially if you are planning a show day.
So, step outside of your home and take a long hard and critical look at your first impression.
Making sure that the lawn is mowed and hedges are trimmed can make a big difference; perhaps your boundary walls even need a lick of paint or loose paving needs to be fixed. The sandy patch where grass refuses to grow may mean you need to really trim your beloved trees.
It may even be a simple task of simply raking up fallen leaves and pulling out a few stray weeds.
Whatever the case may be, the benefits of a few simple fixes far outweigh the drawbacks of hiding your home’s light under the proverbial basket.
#2 Pack up
Kill two birds with one stone. Your decision to put your home on the market means that you will be moving soon, so get a head start on the packing by boxing up items of a more personal nature such as family photographs and children’s art work.
It is always important to remember that buyers want to be able to imagine themselves living in your home and it is difficult to envision this when the space is filled with how you are living in that home.
#3 You can’t hide behind closed doors
Remember that buyers are likely to open wardrobe and cupboard doors so make sure that the contents are packed neatly and in a way that conveys space.
It may be necessary to box up seasonal clothing to create space.
Overfull cupboards, drawers and wardrobes often appear smaller and “ample packing space” is always a big draw card in a home.
#4 De-clutter your surfaces
Take a walk around your home and scrutinise every tabletop, countertop and vanity. Clutter is distracting! You don’t want people judging your choice of moisturiser when they should be paying attention to his and hers basins or cringing at a dirty coffee mug in a kitchen while missing Italian stone countertops.
Remove all toiletries from sight in the bathroom and, as a rule of thumb, never have more than two appliances visible on kitchen countertops. A kettle and a toaster or blender are perfect!
It is also a good idea to remove anything stuck to your fridge door, along with the magnets. A fridge door cluttered with takeaway menus, your nephews’ and nieces’ Grade 1 school photographs, as well as tourist memento fridge magnets from your sister-in-law’s honeymoon to Venice all distract from the fantastic space catered for the buyer’s fridge!
We often take for granted how much personal and private information adorns the humble fridge door.
Whether you are showing your home during the day or at night time,it is always a good idea to consider air and light.
Open the curtains and crack open a window in every room to let in natural light and air, and go a step further by turning on all the lights in your home. You don’t want any room to appear dark and dingy as this is a big turn off to most buyers.
In areas where windows and overhead lighting may do little to help, consider adding a free-standing lamp or increase the bulb size of existing lights.
Bathrooms are one of those rooms that can make or break a home, so take extra care to clean shower doors taps and mirrors until they sparkle.
Move dirty and clean laundry out of sight and hang fresh towels.
It is often a good idea to remove some or all the mats from the floor.
A scattering of too many or too large mats breaks up the floor surface and can make the room look smaller than it truly is.
Your pets may be part of your family; you may even have one of those signs up that proudly warns about not sitting on the furniture if you don’t want pet hair on your clothes. But remember that prospective buyers may not share your love of furry family members so, wherever possible, minimise the pet paraphernalia and accessories.
This is especially important when it comes to the less-adorable litter boxes and “landmines”.
Run a brush or vacuum over furniture to keep hair to a minimum and hide pet beds when showing or photographing your home.
Just like having biscuits baking during an open house to fill the kitchen with comforting and homey aromas, there are a few other pro tips of which you can take advantage to help you seal the deal.
Break out the good China: if possible set the table before a viewing. Simple props such as these helps buyers see themselves entertaining in the home or enjoying long leisurely family dinners.
The same principle applies to decking out your poolside or patio furniture with cushions the way you would if you were entertaining guests.
Regardless of whether you are hoping to sell your upmarket mansion, your suburban family home or your lock-up-and-go third floor walk-up, simple attention to detail and a good spring cleaning will go a long way towards giving your sales effort a leg up.
Words: Leanne Parker