When you discuss the fastest way of selling your home at dinnertime, the contemporary term “home staging” often comes up. You can rest assured that your grandmother’s voice would soon chime in, telling you how back in the day, they put up their home for sale with just a lick of paint, a half-hearted tidy-up and a stone cold pot of coffee.
The world has changed a lot since then; in today’s more challenging market, full of savvy, thorough and fussy buyers, you need to project a home where the buyers can easily imagine themselves living for years to come.
Gone are the days of quick fixes; the new era is ushering in well-thought strategies that will not only enhance the value of your home but also does the trick of selling your home faster and for more money.
What is this home staging? To put it simply it is a way to show your home in the best light to its maximum potential.
To answer the question is home staging important, it is helpful to see its utility from the eyes of the buyers (the ultimate consumers in this case). A thumping three-fourths endorsed it as an essential tool that transformed a home for sale into an inviting showcase that attracted buyers and assisted them in visualizing it as their future home.
Additionally, the same report also highlighted that 62 percent of sellers’ agents said that staged homes sold faster. NAR’s research from 2015 indicated that buyers were willing to pay more for a well-staged home, too.
Home Staging 101
A few things, as suggested by the NAR report, are a given in home staging. These are,
– Decluttering the home (93 percent)
– Entire home cleaning (89 percent)
– Carpet cleaning (81 percent)
– Removing pets during showings (80 percent)
Hence, take care of the 3Ds – Deep clean, Declutter and Depersonalize. Additionally, take care of repairs that may have been lingering for some time so that your home for sale exudes a well-maintained look.
Our tips for home staging start where the above end, as our understanding is that you would have taken care of the basics. We now need to step into the next level, as home staging is marketing and you do want you home for sale to stand out in the sea of the other available properties.
1. Hire a storage unit and direct all things extra there. It helps in decluttering and makes the space feel larger and airier. Falling things, stuffed hall closets and things like a pile of shoes is highly unattractive. This also extends to your wardrobes. They should look organized so all ‘extra’ articles should be removed from the home for sale.
2. Enhancing your curb appeal is a must as a carefully curated exterior sends out a message of well-cared-for-home and can ensure more conversions of buyers wanting a full home tour (thus increasing your chance for a sale). Simple touches like a manicured lawn, a clean driveway, an attractive front door and porch can make a big impact.
3. Unfortunately, as most buyers are not very imaginative or creative, it helps if each room in the home for sale has been provided with a purpose. That extra room that you just used as a storage should be staged as a home office, a guest bedroom or a children’s room, based on the requirements of the buyer demographic that you are targeting.
4. Painting the high traffic areas and maintaining a neutral colour schemes helps the home for sale look cleaner, brighter and more well maintained. It also has a universal appeal and hence helps the buyers imagine themselves in the same space. Conversely, a taste-specific colour scheme may end up alienating buyers. Additionally, decluttering the wall and opening up wall space would also add to the illusion of greater space.
5. Appeal to all the senses through attractive warm lighting and inviting smells such as soothing essential oils (the pet odour is a definite no-no)
DIY Quick Fixes
– Add colourful potted flowers by the front door. Cleaning up and brightening up the front door area helps makes the place inviting; a feeling that the buyer then carries inside.
– Add extra pillows on the bed and sofa. They serve a dual purpose of livening up the décor through adding colourful accents/patterns as well as making the space feel warmer.
– A fluffy (and preferably new) white bathrobe and white towels are reminiscent of luxurious hotels and spas. Seeing them in a home for sale triggers similar feeling for the buyers.
– Keeping a pretty tray with coffee or wine on the bed in the master bedroom is evocative of the feeling of relaxing and unwinding in the space. This tiny mental cue will have a positive spark.
– Setting the table in the dining room, breakfast nook and kitchen bar with pretty place settings and centrepieces makes the home look more welcoming
– Attractive countertops in the kitchen and the smell of freshly baked goods exudes a homely feeling. A lovely set of containers or a bowl of citrus on the countertop would add colour. Similarly, a small well lit lamp with warm lighting would add the ‘cozy’ factor.
The Major Don’ts
– While depersonalizing your décor, do not purge all your photos, the home should look well loved. You need to strike a fine balance between showcasing a warm and cozy home and distracting the potential buyer.
– Do no stuff clutter into wardrobes, the buyers want to get an idea of the amount of storage space. It is advisable to have neatly organized wardrobes with their doors wide open at the time of the showing.
– Including too much of furniture makes the room look smaller. Here, stick to the rule of three. Have only three large pieces of furniture in each room, the rest can go into storage for the time being.
Professional Stagers – yay or nay
It is always advisable to review your staging plans and results with your real estate agents as they can objectively judge and draw on their professional knowledge as well as experience.
We at Engle & Volkers Torornto West understand the value that a great home staging brings to the transaction. Therefore, we offer a complete range to dress up your home – from a short consultation with a professional stager to full-service staging services.
If you want to sell your house FAST and make more in the bargain – then call us NOW for a quick consultation on staging and our other add-on services.