How to Stage Your Home for Sale

You’re ready to move on to your dream home, but first you have to sell your current house – and fast! Fortunately, smart staging will help your home appeal to all types of buyers and get it off the market faster.

Your first helpful tip: Stage it before your next home appraisal, since appraisals can be impacted by the home’s condition and appearance.

Declutter. Grab some moving boxes and get to work. Decluttering now will make everything that much easier when the moving trucks arrive.

  • Pack up anything that’s too personal, too large for the space or isn’t in the best shape.
  • Get rid of anything you don’t plan on taking with you in the move.
  • Store any kids’ toys that aren’t being used.
  • Organize your tabletops, bookcases, countertops and floors to get rid of unnecessary clutter.

Clean. Kick into spring cleaning mode! It’s time to get your house cleaner than it’s ever been.

  • Scrub bathrooms from top to bottom, including closets and medicine cabinets.
  • Remove any stains from sinks and tubs.
  • Rid your house of all pet odors — clean out their bedding, crates and litter boxes, then give them a bath and keep them clean until your house is officially sold.
  • Tidy the cabinet shelves and drawers in your kitchen.
  • Wipe down all light switches, heat and air registers, door handles and light fixtures.
  • Wash all windows, inside and out, for a sparkly clean view!
  • Power-wash your home’s exterior, driveway and walkways.

Rearrange and organize. Create a space that lets the potential buyer see each rooms’ potential.

  • Clearly define the purpose of each room.
  • Create cozy conversational groupings of furniture by moving it away from the walls.
  • Stage your dining room and outdoor areas with the look of a lifestyle everyone wants — use flowers, seating, hammocks, etc.
  • If you have a 1-, 2- or 3-bedroom home, be sure bedrooms are being shown as bedrooms and not as a home office or toy room. This makes your home appear bigger.
  • Put an odd number of decorative items on shelves and furniture. An odd number is more pleasing to the eye.
  • Decorate the master bedroom in a gender-neutral style so it appeals to the widest audience.

Repair. Putting in a little money now to make necessary aesthetic repairs will help quicken the selling process by adding more appeal to your home.

  • Repair cracks in walls or drywall.
  • Paint all walls that have unusual colors or are white – warm neutrals like taupe, gray, green and brown appeal to a wide range of people.
  • Remove out-of-date carpeting and repair damage to floors – buyers are looking for floors that look new.
  • Make sure all appliances and bathroom fixtures work.
  • Refresh the stain or paint on your deck and/or front porch.
  • Add batteries to any power items you want to show off — a remote for a fireplace, electronic blinds, etc.

Finishing touches. These small but mighty final touches will make your home inviting, comfortable and overall a place someone sees themselves living in.

  • Mow and seed the lawn, weed and mulch gardens and plant flowering annuals.
  • Freshen up the place with a clean robe on a bathroom hook, flowers on the dining room table and a bowl of fruit on your kitchen counter.
  • Replace the welcome mats at your front and back door.
  • Attract people to all corners of your house with well-placed lights, pictures or staging elements.
  • Make sure your home smells nice before a showing. Open the windows for 10 minutes, bake cookies and run your dryer with towels you’re fluffing up for a display in the bathroom.

Selling your home quickly depends on how easy you make it for potential buyers to imagine themselves living in it. Give these smart staging ideas a try – no doubt you’ll have them feeling at home the second they walk through the door!

Once you've sold your home and move into a new one, talk to your agent and check out our homeowner coverages to make sure your new hard-earned dream never goes unprotected.

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Related Topics: Selling Your Home