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Real Estate Articles - Staging

Can’t Sell Your Home? Set the Stage

Having trouble selling that gem you purchased ten years ago?  You need to set the stage properly. You also need to enhance the curb appeal of your home to make a good first impression with buyers.

Sometimes, home owners need a little help----prodding----in the right direction to get a home sold and do it in a cost effective time frame.  The problems begin when home owners can’t understand why everyone doesn’t love all the work and creativity they have put into their homes.

Your home has a wonderful floor plan, lots of room, even a new up-graded kitchen; so what’s the problem?  You have lived here ten years and love the place.  It has all the “Just Right” stuff in it to make your family feel warm and fuzzy:  Your favorite paint colors, carpet, window treatments, and art.  

Here is where it would be nice to have one of those television personalities come in and help you out a bit.  Unfortunately, they are not available to us all.  So, maybe with a few guidelines, home owners can figure out for themselves just how to correctly stage a home for a quick sale. Learn how to decorate the master bedroom as well. A few helpful hints might be all you need.

Obviously, presenting a clean house is imperative.  Now before you get upset, I know the house is clean; this is not intended as an insult.  But, you might be surprised how dust under a bed, grease on the stove top hood, or pet dander can be so apparent to some.  Remember, you have been living in your home for ten years, and the scents of your daily life are welcoming to your family.  So, start your staging with a good spring cleaning.  

Next, take an inventory of each room in the house.  Put yourself in a complete stranger’s shoes (one who doesn’t have your same stuff) and ask the question, “If I were moving in here, where would I put my……”?  The best way to help others see your home as a great buy for them is to clear as much of your personal items out of the room as possible.  Give them as much of a blank canvas as you can. Think of a really great hotel room.  Different people stay in the rooms day after day, and each feels comfortable in the room because the décor is universal and the color scheme soothing.  So, put away those cute country ruffles, or that heavy dark Mediterranean furniture, and give the potential buyers a chance to imagine their own belongings in your space.  

Then, go to the paint store and get a nice neutral paint color that goes with everything and paint the house, yes the entire house, the same color.  Pick a color that best enhances your carpet color.  I
know Susie loves her hot pink bedroom, but she will soon be moving, so console her and let her help pick the new paint.  If you have used wall paper, go ahead and remove it, or if that is too time consuming, see if you can paint over it.

With the walls painted and your style-specific bric-a-brac packed safely away, go through the house and change any outdated light fixtures or cabinet hardware.  Again, go for something universal that would fit any style.  

In your kitchen, clear the counter tops of all appliances and unnecessary items you usually store there.  Make the kitchen seem larger buy removing refrigerator magnets, coffee pots, or items usually stored on the window sill.

Presuming you are not replacing carpet, clean it and use a light airy room freshener allowing it time to defuse several hours before people arrive to see the house.  Pick up all clutter that might be on the carpets, like cat toys, plant debris, or magazines and newspapers.  Hide all extension cords or stereo wires.

Now, remember to add some life to your home.  A vase of flowers on the dinning room table or some colorful place mats adds warmth.  Lighted candles in a bathroom add the right ambiance. But please be careful about fire danger.

On the day of your showing, turn lights on in all the rooms and open the windows, if the weather permits.  Fresh air and light are great selling points.  You may want to put higher wattage bulbs in your light fixtures, so it brightens the room more.  Our sense of smell is the one we most often recall, so try baking cookies and let the aroma waft through the house.  Or put a saucepan on the stove top and simmer some apples and cinnamon.  

Remember, staging your home doesn’t have to cost a small fortune.  A little paint, some colorful flowers, removing clutter; and your home can make a great first impression, which will insure you get the best price and the quickest sale.

                                                                             Debra Miller

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Debra Miller

Bella Real Estate

(530) 651-5120
(530) 651-5010
(530) 306-8438

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(530) 651-5120

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