Home Staging | Home Sale Preparation

 

Home Staging

 

Home staging is an important aspect of selling a home today. With lots of competition for buyers it is those homes that leave a lasting impression on a buyer in a good way that end up selling quicker and for more money! One of the more critical items today when selling a home is the first impression a buyer gets when they not only walk through the front door but approach the home from the street.

Homes today that are in less than stellar condition suffer greatly when it comes time for a buyer to make an offer. In this challenging Real Estate market buyers are not forgiving. They want a turn-key home and frankly if yours isn’t one of them they have choices!  Home staging has become a more important element in Real Estate success.

 

Back in the good ole days of the Real Estate market from the mid 1990′s until the mid-2000′s preparing and possible staging home for sale was not as necessary as it is today. Every home seller today has stiff competition and have far less buyers in the market place vying for their homes.

 

This makes it far more critical for your home to be in top shape when the property gets listed for sale. In a buyers’ market those that are looking at your home are far less forgiving. It is easy for buyers to be choosy because the inventory levels have grown.  Homes that are not in great condition can take a severe price beating in this environment. There are far fewer buyers today who are interested in spending the time and energy fixing up a home’s myriad of issues.

 

One of the things you hear mentioned quite a bit in Real Estate circles is “curb appeal”. First impressions are a critical factor when you are selling a home. Given that the first thing a buyer looks at when they visit your property is the yard and the exterior of the home, making sure that it is at least presentable is a must.

 

Don’t be confused by the word “staging” and think that means bringing in all sorts of fancy furniture for your home. While this is an aspect of home staging a vacant home, for the majority of people home staging means making your home looks its best!

 

Here are some tips for minimal money that will help to facilitate a timelier sale:

 

Exterior Home Staging Tips

  • Remove all debris and trash from the yard including any tree limbs, branches, and left over leaves.

  • Sweep the driveway and walkway of any sand and pull weeds.

  • Pay careful attention to have all your landscaping beds weeded out and presentable. Adding a fresh coat of mulch gives your home an edge.

  • Trim the bushes if needed. Keep them a few feet back from the home allowing the home to breath. The home inspector will reinforce this.

  • Consider planting some hearty spring flowers that have lots of color to increase curb appeal further.

  • Evaluate your driveway and get it seal coated if it looks old and tired. Seal coating is fairly inexpensive and really does wonders to give your home a new and fresh feel.

  • Clean out your gutters. Leaves coming out of your gutters creates a feeling that the home has not been cared for.

  • Hose down your deck and consider seal coating the surface if necessary.

  • Look for any rotted trim boards and replace as needed. This is a common inspection item.

  • The entry way to your home should look magnificent! A fresh coat of paint on the front door always looks terrific. Remove any cob webs as this is a place they often are found.

  • Consider adding a few potted flowering plants at the entry with some vibrant colors.

  • Use a garden hose and spray down any areas of your siding that may have mold or mildew build-up.

 

Please realize that a home buyer will almost ALWAYS estimate higher for making repairs than the actual cost for these improvements.  You will spend far less money to do these things before the home goes on the market than letting a buyer try to renegotiate after a home inspection.

 

Use these tips to help stage the interior of your home

 

Interior Home Sale Staging Tips

  • When getting the interior of a home ready for sale one of the first considerations should be taking any unnecessary possessions and removing them from the home. This is a critical element of home staging. You want to make your home feel as large and uncluttered as possible. De-cluttering old furniture, boxes, and nick knacks go a long way in maximizing the presentation. You may want to consider a local storage center for these things, as it is well worth the money to do so. This of course is if you do not have the space in a basement or attic.

  • If there is not a local storage facility, I would suggest renting a storage unit from PODS (portable on demand storage) or a company like them.

  • Once all the clutter is gone I would suggest a major spring cleaning if necessary. The bathrooms and kitchen should be spotless! These are the rooms that buyers will pay careful attention to. These rooms are the most costly to upgrade so buyers will be far more picky here.

  • Spruce up all the closets in your home. Buyers are always concerned about closet space. Having the closets at least neatly organized is important.

  • Clean all the windows. Homes always show better when there is an abundance of natural light. Buyers especially gravitate towards bright homes and away from dark ones.

  • Touch up painting is essential in any home sale. Concentrate on high traffic areas where scuff marks and worn paint are readily visible.  Homes that have painting issues really stand out but in a not so pleasant way!

  • Always paint or bleach any old ceiling stains away. For example, if one of your kids took a shower without the curtain fully closed and there is an awful looking stain in the kitchen ceiling below the bath above… get it removed! The fact that it looks terrible is reason enough but buyers will also assume you have a plumbing problem.

  • Clean out and organize the garage. A spacious garage will be a consideration for many home buyers.

  • In areas of your home where natural light is not abundant, make sure you have lamps with brighter bulbs. In addition make sure they are on for showings. There is nothing worse than a dreary and dark home.

  • Clear your kitchen counters completely of everything that is not essential. Buyers love to see a spacious kitchen, especially counter areas.

  • Clean all faucets, mirrors, lights, and ceiling fans. There should be no visible dust bunnies!

  • Re-caulk any tubs, showers, sinks, or tile flooring that has loose grout.

  • If you have leaking faucets make sure they are corrected before placing your home for sale.

 

Having your home staged and looking its best both inside and out will absolutely make a difference.

 

Do not underestimate how important staging a home can be to the success of a timely transaction with less headaches for you! While preparing your home to be ready for the market don’t forget how critical it is to pick a Realtor who will price your home properly and then market the heck out of it!

 

Never forget how important it is to have proper home staging for your home. Keeping these things in mind will put your on the right track to a timely and pain free sale!

 

Other home staging resources:

© 2015 Cindy Olson, REALTOR® . Powered by Vibrant Branding www.vibrantbranding.com

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Jim Dunning, Broker