Staging a home for sale means editing and styling each room to put its best foot forward. You should highlight each room’s strengths and downplay any flaws. Sometimes, that might be asking homeowners to take on bigger projects like removing carpeting, painting walls or replacing appliances. More often, it’s simply a matter of making a few key changes that have a big impact on appearance. Before putting up the “For Sale” sign, consider these five staging upgrades.
- Make sure each room’s purpose is clear.
The function of a room should be immediately obvious to any buyer who walks through the front door. If the home is listed as a four-bedroom ranch, then each bedroom listed should have a bed in it. Move the office someplace else, or tuck it in the corner of the bedroom. Pack up the craft supplies and turn the hobby room into a guest room. This will help prospective buyers picture their furniture and their family living happily ever after in the home.
- Update the window treatments and blinds.
If the view from the living room windows contains mountains, the ocean, or a lovely valley, open up the curtains or shades and let the view take center stage. And if the home has a less-than-majestic view, focus on natural light instead. Remove old, heavy and dusty draperies and curtains. If you can’t easily lower and raise the current blinds or shades, replace them with updated, working styles that block an unsightly view but still allow light inside. Buyers with children will appreciate an investment in blinds without cords.
- Choose light fixtures that are functional and stylish.
All light fixtures and fans in the house should work perfectly—and quietly. Replace any noisy or wobbly ceiling fans with ones that fit the size of the room and the celling height. Instantly update the dining room or foyer by swapping out an old brass chandelier that was trendy 25 years ago for a new fixture in a classic style with a neutral finish.
Another easy but often-overlooked fix is to make sure all the light bulbs in a room are in the same color range — such as warm white, cool white, daylight, and so on. Don’t forget to add dimmer switches for celling and wall fixtures.
- Swap out old hardware for modern versions.
A quick, easy, and inexpensive kitchen or bath upgrade is to replace cabinet door and drawer hardware. If the cabinets are in good condition but they don’t look brand new, switch out the drawer knobs for new, contemporary pulls in a chic style. Choose colors and finishes that will match the faucet and light fixtures.
- Finish with a pleasing scent.
While the way a house looks is important, the way the house smells is just as noticeable. Your home should smell fresh and clean. Unappealing and offensive odors can distract from even the most stylish room. Eliminate any pet odors with a thorough cleaning, and hide litter boxes and pet beds. Food smells can also linger for days, so avoid cooking with pungent ingredients during the week of a showing. For an easy way to get the whole house smelling great, boil orange peels and a dash of cinnamon on the stove right before the prospective buyers arrive.
Proper staging will let prospective buyers imagine how the home can fit their needs and lifestyle. The time you take to help the sellers clean, edit, update, and style will be rewarded when the offers start rolling in!
Abigail Sawyer is the Senior Social Marketing Specialist for Blinds.com and a home improvement junkie currently restoring a 1972 cottage with her husband and Goldendoodle, Biscuit. Visit the Blinds.com website to find the right window treatments to boost your home and up your offer.