Staging Your Home

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After you’ve cleared the clutter from around your home, you’re ready to start staging it for potential buyers. Depending on your time-frame and budget, you can hire a professional stager to coordinate the details, or work directly with a furniture rental company to deliver furniture, housewares and appliances. The goal of staging a home for sale is to make your home appealing, spacious and memorable.

Even if you choose not to bring in anything new as part of the staging process, here are some simple home staging tips that you can do to make your home stand out.

  • Focus on your best features. Whether it’s a great view, a cozy fireplace or an inviting eating area, highlight the focal points of the house. This approach can help you prioritize your staging budget. Maybe you rent a new patio set to show off the possibilities of entertaining outside on your deck. Or it could be as simple as adding lighting to emphasize the dining room or moving an armchair to attract the buyer’s eyes to the fireplace.
  • Addition by subtraction. Before bringing in new furniture and accessories, start by removing extra furnishings. For example, a crowded bookcase may suggest a lack of built-in storage and you don’t want buyers focusing on the titles on the shelves instead of on your walk-in closets. It will also make the house look bigger, which is nearly universally appealing to potential buyers.
  • Lived in, but better. An empty home can be overwhelming to buyers, who can’t imagine what it would look like fully furnished. If you have already moved out of your home, consider renting furniture. Many furniture rental companies also offer appliances and housewares by room, so you can include small touches, including items for the kitchen, bedrooms and bathrooms.
  • Something to remember. When making design decisions during remodeling, the conventional wisdom is to choose neutrals that will go with the new buyer’s décor. You can go a bit bolder with furniture and decorations in staging — it’s okay for the home to convey a sense of personality and make buyers want to linger. You want to give buyers a sense of the lifestyle they would enjoy if they bought your house. It helps if you make it memorable.
  • Make it shine. Don’t underestimate the power of a clean house. It’s an important part of staging, too. Wash your windows, clear the cobwebs from the corners and apply a fresh coat of paint to areas that need it. Switch out cabinet pulls and handles for a relatively inexpensive update. When prioritizing your time, pay extra attention to bathrooms and kitchens, where buyers tend to focus.

Above all, remember that staging involves more than a one-size-fits-all solution, like simply bringing in a sleek new sofa or a vase of fresh-cut flowers. Your home has a story, and staging allows you to tell it. And, if you end up falling in love with some of the furniture, many staging companies will let you buy it and bring it with you. Happy staging!

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