The goal of home staging is for the buyer to mentally move in. If they cannot mentally feel and see themselves living here, you've lost them. Here are 6 easy and free ways to stage your home in order to get more value for your home.
1. Get them inside - The first thing a prospective buyer notices about a home is not the living room but the front yard. Many think staging is for the inside only but you have to stage the outside to get buyers inside. So cut the grass, trim the hedges, rake the leaves, sweep the sidewalks, wash the windows and power-wash the front walkway and driveway.
2. De-clutter - Cluttered rooms appear too small to buyers. In my opinion clutter eats equity. Seller's should divide their belongings into 2 piles, one is the "KEEP" pile and the other is the "GIVE AWAY" pile. The items in the keep pile will be used to stage the house while the items that are in the give away pile should be given away and removed from the house. De-cluttered rooms may appear empty to the seller, but the buyer won't think so. The Seller needs to understand that you are not selling your things, you are selling the space. De-cluttering the outdoor spaces is important too.
3. De-personalize - A potential buyer does not want to see pictures of your family. They want to be able to see themselves living in this space. Remove as much personal items as possible.
4. Mini Face Lift - Add a fresh coat of bright and neutral colors to the walls to give your house that fresh and spacious feeling. Re-arrange your furniture and try not to put too many dark and hard looking items in one spot. You need to add the right balance of a hard and soft look to the room like adding an area rug as an example. Change small things like front door mats, new towels, add fresh flowers, wash down your back lawn furniture and please always make sure that all bathroom and fresh and new rolls of toilet paper!!
5. Re-organize - Always organize chachkehs (decorative items) in ones or threes. On larger surfaces put 3 items (ie. a plant, a bowl and a picture) and on smaller surfaces 1 item.
6. Functionality - Make sure everything is in working order. Check the doorbell, that all railings are firm and not wobbly, make sure there are no lights burnt out inside and outside, check all light switches, make sure there are no holes in any screens. Do a thorough walk through alone or with someone else and fix anything that needs repair.
You are now ready to list your house!!