5 No Cost Home Staging Tips
While professional home staging is always worth the investment, sometimes it is just not in the budget. Just because you have no staging budget does not mean there is not anything you can do to prepare your home for sale. Here are the top 5 FREE things to do get your home sold:
1. CLEAN, CLEAN, CLEAN. The number one thing people notice when in your home is whether or not they "think" it is clean. No one has ever toured a home and decided not to buy it because it is just too clean. A home that is absolutely pristine clean presents as well cared for. A pristine home does not make potential buyers wonder what's going on behind the walls like a dust bunny can. Clean all windows inside and out. Dust all door frames, light fixtures, ceiling fans, and blinds. Do not leave a single spot in your home untouched. Potential Buyers look EVERYWHERE – make sure it is clean there too!
2. DEPERSONALIZE the house. Pack up almost all personal photos and family keepsakes. If you have a great photo of your family having a great time camping or enjoying some other family activity, then you can leave this one out on display if your home is being marketed to families. This ONE family photo plants a seed of happiness in a buyer's mind – "look how happy my family will be living here". All other photos and keepsakes must be packed away out of view, ideally out of the home. Family photos and keepsakes draw buyer's attention to your family and keep them from seeing your home as their potential home. Your keepsakes make your home too personal – to you – without leaving room for them. Your keepsakes draw them to your personally rather than your house. You're not selling the family (I hope!). You are selling the house – so let the house be the center of attention.
3. PACK, PACK, and then PACK some more! You could probably live comfortably for a short time with about half the things you own. Especially if you have been in your home for more than a couple years. We all tend to collect things. Whether we use them or not does not matter. What matters is showcasing the space your home has to offer potential buyers. You can not showcase space that is full of stuff. Pack up as much as you can live with, then store it offsite somewhere if possible. If not, store in the garage but make sure you leave enough room for a car. People will understand you are packed up getting ready to move, but not if there is evidence of packing inside the home. Store packed boxes neatly away from living spaces no matter what.
4. MANICURE outdoor spaces. Again – it can not be said enough – clean! Outdoor living is now a part of everyday life for all of us. Potential buyers will absolutely consider the outdoor spaces as critically as they do indoor spaces. If you do not have the budget to freshen the landscape with flowers and decorative items you can still make sure the yard is perfectly manicured. Keep your yard watered and cut to approximately 3 inches in height. Any shoreer takes away from the fresh green look, any longer starts to look unkempt. Trim the foliage – it should be very neat and properly shaped to match your neighborhood. Trim the trees so that a 6 foot tall person can easily pass under them. It makes them appear taller and gives the yard a clean look. Power wash the sidewalk, patio, deck, driveway, and fence. You will be shocked how much of a difference this will make in the look of your home.
5. LIGHTEN UP! When showing or photographing your home for potential buyers open every single blind and curtain in your home. Turn on every single light. Even the light over the cook top and inside the oven should be on. (Remember, the appliances are pristinely clean – they need to be shown off!) Buyers are looking for "light and bright" not "dark and dreary" so – give them light. Let them see how clean and well cared for your home is. Do not be afraid to move a lamp to brighten up a space if you need to. Let there be light – and lots and lots of it!
Sometimes it can be a lot of work getting your house ready to sell – but it is an investment that will show up in your bank account on closing day. It is absolutely worth taking the time to prepare as best you can rather than listing for less than you should and then dropping your price even more to sell.
Professional home staging is probably less expensive than you think – and can payoff tremendously! Call today to schedule a consultation – 281.615.0607. If a consultation is out of the budget you can still register to receive my 3 Keys to Selling Your Home Guide for absolutely no cost. In addition, I am happy to answer simple home staging questions for free via email. Email your questions and I will try to help.