As much as I enjoy the renovation process, I love staging my renovated houses even more. It really is icing on the cake. When you work so hard renovating the house, many of the projects don’t really show the hard work. Once it’s all finished, you can make it shine with curb appeal and staging.
It isn’t possible to find a decor and style that appeals to everyone. Once you understand that, it becomes a whole lot easier. I let the house guide me. It’s funny because I am not the Zen–type at all. Those who know me well, will attest to that! I can hear them all laughing now. But I really do think that each house has an inherent personality. I can’t explain it, but I can feel it when I walk in. Sometimes it starts with the exterior. Maybe I’m a house whisperer, or maybe the cancer drugs have made me crazy. Either way, I really just go with my gut.
There are thousands of references on the internet on how to stage your house for a sale. I mean THOUSANDS. When I’m showing a house to a client, I am completely shocked when the home is a disaster or completely empty. I guess not everyone can hear the house talking (only fellow house whisperers). It is imperative to help the homebuyer see what the possibilities for the home. Not as your house, as their potential home. I’ve had many people express their dislike for going into other people’s homes when they are shopping for a house. They feel like they are invading someone’s personal space. But I have also seen them struggle when a house is totally vacant. It drastically helps when the house has been staged for a sale. People find buying a new home a stressful process. Everything a seller does to relieve that stress helps to ensure a sale.
It is, however, REALLY important to work with your agent on this process. Sometimes people can spend a lot of unnecessary money on the wrong direction. Here are a few tips to stage your home:
- Spending $100 updating curb appeal can go further than spending hundreds or thousands on a water feature that buyers may shy away from. Paint the front door. If you have the right space, add a couple of potted flowers and maybe a chair with some colorful outdoor pillows. Plant some colorful annuals. Make sure your lawn is mowed and hide your garbage cans out of sight. Update your house numbers so they can be seen from the street.
- Removing your personal photos and adding a few art pieces can have a huge impact. Most of the discount stores like Home Goods, TJ Maxx, and Bealls Outlet offer generic artistic pieces to make a room pop. No one will judge your taste in fine art, but a piece with brighter colors can give a neutral room the hit of color it needs.
- You may still be living in your house, but you hope to be moving soon. If you are listing your house for sale, start the packing process early. Pare your closets down. You are moving, now is the time to purge your closet. Store away items that you will not need for the next 60-90 days. This makes closets look larger and more capable of holding all your buyers’ stuff.
- Update your lightbulbs. Make sure your rooms are bright. People don’t feel comfortable going into rooms with dingy lighting. Make sure you have new LED bulbs in all the same color family. Where possible, choose daylight bulbs. It can make a HUGE difference in how a room presents.
DE-CLUTTER YOUR HOUSE:
- Seriously. If you aren’t taking all your furniture to your new house, then it may be time to call Habitat for Humanity or Goodwill. Get rid of items you will not be taking with you. Trust me, you will be happy that you did it before moving day. Lastly, you need to pay attention to traffic flow in your house. Your house will feel smaller if it is difficult to move through.
If you want your home to sell faster, I strongly suggest you focus on staging. Taking the time to make your house bright, appealing, and more general will pay off. Remember, it’s all about taking the stress off of the buyers, making them feel comfortable and allowing them to see your house as their new home.
Michelle Moss, Buyer’s Agent with Trammell Realty, offers home staging consultations. Email her at MichelleMossFL@GMail.com or call 772-675-5001.