According to a survey conducted by the National Association of Realtors, 81% of buyers say it is easier to visualize property as a future home when it’s staged. According to the same survey, the most important rooms to stage (in this order) are the living room, kitchen, master bedroom, dining room, bathroom, children’s bedroom and guest room. From my experience, I would also add staging a deck or patio because outdoor space has become an extension of the living areas particularly when the home has a special view or lovely yard.
If you don’t want to hire a professional stager, a good realtor will be able to give you valuable advice and suggestions. As part of the “walk through” during the initial discussion with a potential seller, I will take notes and make recommendations to show your home to its best possible advantage in order to attract offers. A few of the very basics of staging include:
- Arranging furniture to showcase the floor plan and maximize the space
- Removing personal photos (potential buyers want to picture themselves in the home)
- Maximizing the natural light in the home (trim the bushes and consider removing heavy drapes or shades)
- Emptying half the contents in the closets and putting it in storage
Many sellers believe they need to renovate, refinish hardwood floors or upgrade appliances and countertops to get top dollar for their home. Although there are instances when this is recommended, very often this is not necessary. I recommend doing only those updates that we are pretty certain will pay off.
The necessity to de-clutter and deep clean goes without saying and is not considered staging. Buyers have a hard time overlooking dirty windows, greasy appliances, cobwebs, and stained tubs or toilets. Highlight your home’s strength and create a bright and cheery environment for potential buyers.