Staging Your Real Estate for Potential Buyers

by : Andrew Stratton

An empty house is like a blank piece of paper that needs to be transformed into a book report. It can feel overwhelming to have to make a home out of an empty canvas. That's where staging comes in. Staging helps potential buyers visualize how they can arrange the home to their liking.

While professionals can be hired to perfect your house's appearance, there are plenty of simple ideas and tips that can help you increase your selling power on your own. Some of them are listed below.

Curb Appeal
The most obvious place to start your sprucing up is outside. The exterior of your home is what will entice buyers to enter. A fresh coat of paint, preferably in a neutral color, and a well-manicured lawn can make a huge impact. If you want to go a step further, break out your green-thumb and plant some colorful flowers that compliment the house paint and trim, and remember to keep your foliage within your property. Tree limbs that cut across lawns are not only unsightly, but a buyer does not want to worry about arguing with a neighbor over property lines.

Clean and Minimize
The first step to staging the inside of your home is, of course, making it as clean as humanly possible. Get the carpets steamed, corners scrubbed, and degrease the kitchen. Your house needs to sparkle.
Another way to keep your house looking fresh is to minimize clutter and get organized. Although you want buyers to be able to visualize how furniture can be arranged, they don't need to see your stuffed animal collection showcased on the couch or know how you like to use old CDs as coasters.

A Wide Range
You are attempting to make the house enticing for as many people as possible. So ditch the sewing rooms, arcades, and exercise equipment. Most people aren't looking for an extra bedroom to turn into a personal gym. Bedrooms should look like bedrooms. Don't have an extra bed? Throw a box spring on some milk crates and cover with a comforter instant bed.
Keep in mind your location as well. If you live in a city full of young, single business men and women, consider making one of the rooms as an office. Regardless of how you decide to delegate extra rooms, be sure they have a clear purpose. A bed, computer desk, and mini-fridge all crammed into one room will only confuse buyers.

Although it is better to keep your staging sparse, a few inviting touches can balance out any coldness. Open the curtains and let the natural light in so people can see how bright and airy the home can be. Use adequate lighting where necessary and put up a few pleasant wall decorations and some fresh flowers. Turn on some calming music and add a couple puffs of air freshener. You are having guests over, after all.

Staging can make a huge impact in the way potential buyers view your home, so spend the time and put in the effort. It might make the difference between a quick, profitable sale and a sluggish return.