10 KEY TIPS FOR STAGING YOUR HOME
1. START WITH A CHANGE OF MIND
De-clutter & De-personalize! Take down excessive amounts of family photos, children's artwork and toys, fridge magnets etc. and store them away. New home buyers are looking to visualize themselves in your home, not how you have used the space.
2. MAXIMIZE CURB APPEAL
The outside of your home will draw people inside. Make sure the bushes are neatly trimmed, the flower beds mulched, the lawn weeded etc., Taking these small steps will help make that crucial “first impression”. A freshly painted front door with a new mailbox and house numbers are easy ways to create maximum impact without breaking the bank. Adding seasonal urns by the front door for some colour are another way to brighten up concrete steps or brick exterior.
3. CHOOSE NEUTRAL COLOUR PALETTE
Stick with a warm and neutral colour palette which include tans, taupe's and greys. Avoid dark colours, especially in small spaces (like powder rooms). Bold colours are great for living, but not for selling. Light and Bright should be your motto! Your ceilings should remain white to give the appearance of tall walls. A good rule of thumb to remember; if the walls haven’t been painted in over 2 years, now is the time!
4. LET THERE BE LIGHT
Lighting plays a vital role and is often overlooked when getting a property ready for sale. There should be NO overhead receptacles without a light fixture! Consider adding pendant fixtures in dining rooms and eating areas. Big box stores offer affordable options in brushed nickel or silver fittings. Remember that dark hallways, rooms with little natural light, basements and bathrooms should be addressed as these rooms typically do not get/have adequate amounts of lighting.
Adding ambient lighting is essential! Adding table and floor lamps will help brighten up any room and help your property appear as “light-filled” as possible.
A major factor that increases the value of a home. It will ALWAYS cost you less to replace worn carpet or add new flooring then to leave it to the new home owners.
Most purchasers are looking for reasons to discount their offers. Flooring is one of the first things buyers see when they walk in. Doing the work yourself will guarantee that you get as close to your asking price as possible.
6. IT’S ALL IN THE DETAILS
Replace all burnt out bulbs in all light fixtures, touch up any nicks and dents in high traffic areas, replace torn screens and fix leaking faucets. Once all the fix ups are done, focus on the pretty stuff. Add some fresh linens in the bathrooms, a new crisp bedding set to the Master bedroom, a bowl of fresh green apples on a kitchen island, fresh flowers on a dining table or in the entrance way to help create the impression of a well-cared for home.
7. CLEAN, CLEAN, CLEAN
If ever you have considered hiring a professional cleaning company, now is the time to do so. Special attention should be placed on appliances, inside and outside of cupboards, baseboards and windows. Bathrooms should be scoured and if necessary use grout cleaner to get the tiles looking spotless!
8. HIGHLIGHT BEST USE OF THE SPACE
Giving a room more than one function (i.e. guest room and office) is a great way to effectively show the space. In condos this becomes essential when space is at a premium.
Using a small desk with a stool you can creatively introduce a “work space” where one wouldn’t think possible. Adding a daybed to a den/office creates extra sleeping space. Determine what adds the most value to potential buyers in your neighbourhood and showcase the space accordingly.
9. KITCHENS AND BATHROOMS ARE THE PLACE TO INVEST
If you have old or dated cabinetry, cracked and worn laminate counters, chipped or broken tiles, consider investing, repairing or upgrading these rooms.
If you have a limited budget, changing cabinetry hardware to brushed nickel or silver knobs and handles will give it an immediate appeal. Consider painting cabinetry instead of replacing them.
Depending on the price point of your property it is often worthwhile to install stone or granite counters. This immediately adds value and is very durable for long term use. If stone is not in the budget, consider a “stone– like” laminate counter. Re-caulking around sinks and bathtubs is a simple improvement that can greatly improve the look of a bathroom.
10. VACANT PROPERTIES SIT, STAGED PROPERTIES SELL
Staged homes sell 2 – 3 times faster than unstaged ones. People perceive staged units that are well decorated as worth more. Professional stagers know how to highlight the features of the unit and distract from any “not so desirable” features.
If your budget is limited, consider focusing on main living areas and the Master bedroom. Rental companies carry everything from furniture to linens. Remember, the goal is to show people how to use the space effectively.
Most buyers have already viewed your property on MLS, so make sure that your property stands out among the competition! Staging is your key to getting noticed and getting SOLD.