The majority of buyers make a decision about what they think of a home within a few short seconds of laying their eyes on it. We’ve all heard the cliche, ‘you never get a second chance to make a first impression,’ and that’s definitely true in the world of real estate. First impressions are key when it comes to attracting buyers and tapping into their emotions. After all, most buyers make offers on homes that they make an emotional connection with.
Home staging is all about fostering these connections. It’s about creating a lifestyle for the majority of buyers looking in a particular neighborhood, and giving them what they’re looking for and expecting in a new home.
Here are 7 staging strategies to help ensure your efforts lead to a successful sale.
1. Tidy Up
It goes without saying, but giving your home a thorough clean-up job is the first task on your list. Put everything away that doesn’t need to be in sight, and consider boxing some things up and moving them out of the house completely while your home is on the market. If there are things you don’t really need every day, consider parting with them until you move into your new abode.
Resist the temptation to just stuff your belongings in an unorganized fashion in closets or under beds – buyers will be looking everywhere. They’ll be opening every door and every drawer, so don’t randomly jam your things in places that buyers will inevitably stumble across.
2. Highlight Your Home’s Best Traits
Your home might have its flaws, but it probably has a lot of positive aspects about it too. Whether it’s an open concept floor plan, original crown molding, or gleaming hardwood floors, showcase these traits in a good light so buyers to take notice. This can be done with proper furniture placement and well-placed accessories that help direct buyers’ attention to these spots while playing down any features that might not be so attractive.
3. Arrange Furniture Properly
Speaking of furniture arrangement, you use this tactic to not only showcase attractive features in your home, you can also use it to improve flow, boost functionality, and even make the space seem visually larger than it actually is. The right layout can do wonders to an interior, while an illogical arrangement of furniture can actually turn buyers off.
4. Keep it Simple
Well-placed furniture is a must in a home that’s on the market for sale. After all, how else will buyers now how specific rooms are supposed to be used if you don’t visually show them with proper furniture arrangement?
However, not all pieces will do the trick. The type, size, and number of pieces you include in each room matters. Try not to cram too many oversized pieces into a smaller space, for instance, as doing so will only make the room seem smaller than it really is. The purpose of properly placed furniture is to provide a point of reference and tell buyers how certain spaces are best used.
5. Depersonalize Your Home
The idea behind staging is to help buyers actually see themselves living in your home. They need to envision themselves living there, but that can be a challenge if they’re being bombarded with tons of family photos, personal keepsakes, and even religious or political artifacts. Generally speaking, family photos and other personal belongings can make it tough for buyers to see your home as their own. Make sure your home – and not your family – is highlighted in your staging efforts.
6. Use Effective Lighting
The right amount and type of lighting in a home is crucial. When you have buyers visiting your home, all of the lights should be turned on, and all windows should have treatments that allow as much natural light in as possible. If you’ve got any burned out bulbs, replace them. If there are spaces that could use a little more light, consider installing additional light fixtures. Buyers want to walk into a bright and airy home, and not one that’s dark and dingy.
7. Boost Curb Appeal
Before buyers even step foot into a home, they’ll be greeted with its exterior. Curb appeal speaks volumes and can help entice buyers to want to see what else the property has to offer. It’s not uncommon for buyers to actually refuse to continue with a home’s showing if they’re immediately turned off by its exterior. Make sure this doesn’t happen to you by sprucing up your landscaping and your front doorway and making your home much more attractive and inviting.
The Bottom Line
Home staging truly is an art form and is a critical step in the selling process. Done properly, staging can make a huge difference in how long your home stays on the market before an offer comes in, and the ultimate selling price.