It’s time. You’re thinking about putting your house on the market for sale. You know the key is to ensure your house pops, both online and in person, and you definitely don’t want your home to appear in the many awful real estate photos all over social media. You’ve done your research and know that you need a stager to provide recommendations, so that your house can go from staged to listed to sold.
So, what can you expect to hear from your stager?
Stagers typically focus on the seven key areas listed below to prepare any home for sale. Don’t be surprised if your recommendations include items in most of these buckets.
Occupied homes already have their homeowners’ furniture, décor items, window coverings, and more in place; because so much is there already, stagers will typically try to use as much of the homeowners’ current possessions as possible.
At Stagerie, our stagers’ typical recommendations include the following:
1. Pack Away Extra Items
You’ll have extra items in every room; everyone does! Most homeowners have at least one to two extra furniture items in each room. Get a storage unit, hold a garage sale, or give away suggested items. By the way, while typical staging advice calls that “decluttering”, we prefer to call it “pre-packing” because you’re essentially giving yourself a head start for when your home sells and you move on to your next home!
This is a big one! While homeowners may have pictures of friends and family everywhere, sports memorabilia, or even Star Wars helmets, stagers will want the home depersonalized. The more fun (or crazy) your stuff is, the less attention your actual house will get from potential homebuyers! Don’t be surprised if your home no longer feels like your home when you’re finished with the pre-packing process; you’re preparing your home to go to a new homeowner, after all.
3. Clean for the Queen
While you are pre-packing and depersonalizing, get ready to clean your house from top to bottom. This may include scrubbing baseboards, washing windows, power washing the exterior or the patio, or deep cleaning your appliances. Again, you don’t want potential buyers distracted by smudges in the home. For most buyers, a clean house implies a well-maintained house.
4. Let There Be Light
Many stagers will have you remove bulky curtains or even add lamps in certain spots to maximize the light throughout your house. Light rooms feel airier and, ultimately, bigger. Having the correct light is key to both taking phenomenal real estate photos and welcoming buyers into your home.
Tidying up your landscaping in the front and backyard is another key task. Consider this: as a realtor is unlocking a lockbox to show your home, the homebuyers are standing outside, peering around the front yard, porch, and neighborhood. Make sure that after the first look, the homebuyers are excited to see the rest of your home.
6. Add Pops of Décor
This one may be surprising! After all, if you’ve stored extra items and pre-packed, why should you put items back? You’ll add décor items because your stager will want your home to feel welcoming and warm, not sterile.
7. Deck The Walls
Don’t be surprised if your stager has you remove wallpaper or paint existing accent walls with a neutral color. While you may love your red kitchen, these colors can distract buyers from looking at how spacious your kitchen is in person. Even if you have neutral colors, stagers will also recommend you touch up any dings or nail holes that are easily visible.
What Does Staging Cost?
Staging an occupied home could cost as little as $100 and as much as $5,000, depending on the work to be done. On the high end, that cost usually occurs when a homeowner is hiring painters or completing big ticket items prior to listing their home for sale.
I know this will seem daunting to many people preparing their house for sale, but we can definitively say, it’s worth it! Staging your home, even if it requires painting and flooring expenses, is almost always cheaper than even one price reduction. Happy home staging!
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