If you are selling or thinking of selling your house then you might already know that in today’s highly competitive real estate market, it can pay off to follow a few staging tips and tricks in order to get an advantage that is not based on a lower price. Having personally gone through this process recently, I can tell you first-hand that all of these are definitely inexpensive, easy to do and require minimal investment that yields desirable outcomes.
1. In-house inspection – Before officially listing your house for sale, walk through the house with a critical eye and make a list of all the problem areas. Prioritize them in accordance with your budget and keep in mind that fixes like touching up unsightly wall scrape marks with paint or changing burned out bulbs are low-cost and very easy to do.
2. Less is more – Declutter your house as stage one of the pre-sale process. Simple removal of personal items may single-handedly decrease majority of clutter.
3. Define spaces properly – Rooms should have core dispositions. If you have used one of your bedrooms as a storage room or your dining room as a home-office, time to convert these spaces into their originally intended functions.
4. Add lighting – Dark spaces are simply unattractive, bordering depressive. If there is no natural light in a room, add accent lighting by purchasing inexpensive fixtures that are visually appealing.
5. The greener the better – An easy way to liven up any space is by adding plants, trees and/or flowers. Green is typically associated with freshness, cleanliness and newness; resort to places like Michaels and AC Moore are great for artificial greenery while live plants and trees are available through national retailers like Home Depot and Walmart.
6. Neat, not just clean – This is almost a rhetorical tip that should go without being said. Once the house goes on the market, the possibility of last minute or short-notice showings is inevitable so make sure your house is in a constant guest-hosting mode with made-up beds and neatly organized coffee tables.
7. Take good pictures – This is the most overlooked part of staging. Some realtors dispatch their own photographers to take pictures of your house and some realtors rely on the pictures taken by the home-owners to be used as the main marketing material and sadly, many of the pictures posted on main real-estate websites are just misrepresentative. Regardless of who is photographing your house, it is essential that the images are high-resolution and are taken from flattering angles (try not to alter the furniture or the room).