Staging Your Home: Not If, but How.
In this day and age the question isn’t if the home should be staged, it is how. Over the past few years it has become almost imperative to go through some sort of a staging process in the selling of a home. Not only does it add value to the home, but it also speeds up the sale. Most people do not have the creative mindset to envision the way a home would look if they chose to live in it, and that is why it is up to you to set that vision for them.
Some homes you see on the market are shown as a completely bare canvas with no furniture or décor and all white walls. Others are shown with every piece of memorabilia and possession collected over the duration of the home owners stay. It is important to understand that either one of those visuals is going to change the way a potential buyer sees that house, and more than likely it will have a negative effect. With that being said, as you’re selling you need to understand the importance of a clean simple look with occasional pops of furniture and décor.
You may be someone who has an eye for design all on your own, and you know exactly how to set your home up for success. Others may need just a little hint in the right direction. In that case your agent should be able to draw out the areas that need fixing up. For those who need a great deal of help, and are hoping for a completely refreshed look, it may be time to hire a professional stager.
The first step to home staging as an owner is to prepare yourself to emotionally detach. Picture frames filled with family vacation photos don’t hold the same appeal to the potential buyer as they naturally do to you. Decide what needs to go and what will be repurposed for the means of staging the home. Understand the importance of decluttering and how much this will allow those entering to appreciate the architecture and beauty of the home because there are no distractions. Not only does it draw the eye to the true allure of the home but it also makes the space look bigger. An example of this, is to remove the extra appliances from the counter, or to take away any bulky and unnecessary furniture pieces. Give the living room an airy feel by floating the furniture and centering it properly in the room for proper traffic flow.
The second step would be to deeply clean the space. Make sure all of the walls get a fresh coat of paint. Always remain in the neutral color pallet when choosing the paint color being applied throughout the house. A simple white, light grey, or tan will give the house a fresh look and allow the viewer to envision what they may do with this clean pallet. If areas of the home are carpeted, it would be greatly suggested to have a cleaner refresh the flooring. Not only does this improve the overall appearance of the flooring but it also creates a fresh scent throughout those rooms.
The final step to staging is to add the last minute touch that will make your listing memorable compared to the many other open houses the buyer may attend. Add a strand of lights to the awning of a patio to create a sense of romance. Place lamps around the house for subdued lighting as opposed to the canned lighting installed in the ceiling. Light candles throughout the house for a lovely illuminating fragrance. Add fresh plants or vases filled with fresh flowers to add a pop of liveliness. Place a charcuterie board on the kitchen island to welcome the viewers and lighten the mood. Allow them to envision themselves hosting their own event after seeing how at home you made them feel.
We were inspired to write this post by two of our recent listings in La Jolla. Two homes, side by side were put onto the market at the exact same time. They may be sharing a fence but their aesthetic appeals are direct opposites. One home has been lived in for the past fifty years with hardly any renovations made, while the other is owned by an interior designer who put her skills to work from head to toe. Her hard work on the design of this home did not go unnoticed as it was featured in the San Diego Home and Garden Home of the Year. These two homes are a prime example of the wide spectrum of needs when it comes to staging.
It all comes down to the fact that the mind works well with less to digest. The key is to have a minimalistic mindset while creating an inviting experience that has the buyer saying, “I can’t live without it”