When it comes to staging one’s home for sale its best to follow the advice in the old saying, “You’ll never get a second chance to make a first impression.”
Home Staging – What Is It?
Besides finding a good agent and placing a For Sale sign in the front yard, home staging is a key and often overlooked element in the successful marketing and sale of one’s home. The goal of home staging is to make a house look and feel appealing to a wide variety of buyers thus leading to a quick and successful sale. Home staging is all about the presentation. It is the extra step some home owners miss after the minor repairs and cleaning are done.
No one wants to walk into a cluttered house filled with knickknacks and unsightly wallpaper. But a house that is inviting and appealing will attract more potential buyers and sell faster. By staging one’s home with well-placed lighting, a fresh coat of paint and some new artwork, it gives a potential buyer confidence that they are looking at a well cared for home with pride in ownership. A staged home adds value to the property.
How It Works
Many experts agree that home staging is the last step a homeowner makes before putting their house on the market. Repairs, minor fixes and landscaping upkeep need to be done before the For Sale sign is placed in the yard and home staging begins. Once these steps have been taken, it is time to focus on presenting the home for sale. The owner can either hire a professional to help them with the staging or take their own steps to ensure the house is at its best.
Grabbing a potential buyer’s attention from the curb is the first step in home staging. Curious shoppers will drive by the house first before deciding if they want to attend an open house or schedule a tour. Clutter, unkempt lawns, and homes in disrepair will turn off potential buyers and have them driving to the next house on their list. Place some plants and flowers in the front of the house and be sure to keep up on the weekly lawn mowing. Power-washing the driveway and weeding the lawn are just a few things one can do to grab a buyer’s attention.
Once you get people excited about the outside it’s time to focus on the inside. De-cluttering and depersonalizing the home is one of the most important steps in this process. Excessive collections of sports regalia, the wall of fame - >a large amount of photos and knickknacks impair the potential buyer’s ability to imagine themselves in the home. The potential hombuyer also likes to look at the details when they tour homes so make sure your closets and cupboards are clean and in order. Rent a storage unit or a pod prior to putting the home for sale to remove excess clutter.
Sparkle and Light
Buyers are going to open closet doors and look below the sink in the kitchen so a clean house is a must. Sweep, mop and deep clean areas like floorboards and the space above the cupboards normally missed during regular cleaning. Remove pet hair from the furniture and stains from the carpet. Also, consider minimizing odors and have a trusted friend stop by for a sniff test. Burning pleasant-smelling candles that aren’t too strong can make the house feel more attractive. Lighting is important - people like open & airy rooms. Having plenty of light helps to set a mood to clean the windows inside and out, invest in some new light fixtures and open curtains so buyers can get a feel for the home and experience a positive feeling. Consider painting walls and using color accents to make rooms more attractive. Use neutral colors for the broadest appeal and considerremovinge some of the old furniture. Remember, it’s about the buyer visualizing themselves in the home and how it makes them feel.
Consider Hiring a Professional
For those who don’t have the time or decorating skills, hiring a professional home stager is an option. Accredited Staging Professionals provide an outside objective opinion that friends and family might not be willing to give. They also have the tools like extra artwork and rugs to spruce up a home on a temporary basis. A staging professional can advise on paint colors and ways to de-clutter as well. The starting fee for home staging can range from $500 to into the thousands for pricier homes. Extras including paint, landscaping and new furniture can increase the price as well.
Craftier people can always do it themselves and seek an outside opinion after the projects are completed.
Kansas City Area Seller Resources
If you are thinking about buying or selling a home, give us a call at (913) 312-3614 or send us an email to explore your options and to find out when is the best time for you to make a move.