How to Stage a House to Sell Fast
Amp up Your Curb Appeal
Staging a house starts with the exterior. The key to getting buyers to walk through the front door is first getting them to stop the car. Upgrade your curb appeal with a freshly mowed lawn, seasonally appropriate flowers, and a welcoming front door. Create an inviting porch display with easy-to-read house numbers, a new doormat, porch lighting, and clean furniture. Sweep walkways and, if possible, power wash your siding to give your home a tidy appearance.
This is a big one. Your entire home should be clean and clutter-free, which will help your space feel more open and inviting. Keep countertops and tabletops clear of the daily clutter that tends to stack up, like unopened mail and car keys. Spend time sorting through junk drawers and closets and determine which things can be tossed, donated, sold, or stored. This decluttering process will not only be immensely helpful when staging your house, but also when it comes time to pack up and move.
Give Your Space a Fresh Coat of Paint
If time and budget allow, refresh your space with a fresh coat of paint. Opt for muted shades on walls and trim to create a blank canvas where home buyers can imagine their own styles fitting. “Greige,” or grey-beige, is a clean, neutral color that complements most interior design styles and is a warmer alternative to stark white walls. For a cooler, more modern aesthetic, opt for light grey walls with crisp white trim. At the very least, spackle and paint over any holes in the walls as you stage your home.
Steam Clean Carpets and Polish Wood Floors
Stained carpeting and damaged hardwood can be a turnoff to potential home buyers. While they may choose to change the flooring anyway, clean floors are important to the aesthetic of the home’s interior. If you have pets, this is especially important. For hardwood flooring that needs repair, consider refinishing it as you’re staging your home. If refinishing your floors is outside of your budget, beautiful area rugs are a great option to hide unsightly blemishes.
Put Away Pet Accessories
Although you love your pet, it could turn away potential buyers. Put away all pet bedding, toys, and feeding bowls during home tours. As part of staging your home, have carpets steam cleaned to keep animal smells and stains at bay. Tidy up outdoor areas where your pet may spend time. If possible, relocate your pets during the hours the home is being shown. Remove litter boxes, puppy pads, or any other potential odor-contributing items.
Decorate in a Consistent Color Scheme
While you want your home to appear tidy and neutral, you may still be living there during the staging process, so it’s important to strike a balance between sterile and lived-in. One way to create continuity and comfort throughout your home is by decorating within a consistent color scheme. Think neutral tones on walls and furniture that can be accented with strategic pops of color.
Remove All Personal Photos
Depersonalizing your home is a crucial factor when staging your home for potential buyers to view your space. Buyers should be able to envision themselves and their family in your home, and personal items like family photos can become a distraction. Keep personal items to a minimum and let your home speak for itself. Consider replacing those photos with generic or abstract artwork.
Avoid Displaying Quirky Decor
Stay away from decor that is too style specific. All of your decor should appeal to most potential buyers you’ll have coming though. While your own personal design style might include a collection of funky odds and ends, potential home buyers may not share the same affinity for your stuff. In order to stage your home to sell fast, keep surfaces, floors, cabinets, and closets free of clutter and simply styled.
Bring in Organic Elements
After removing your personal touches, a staged house can start to feel a little stark. One way to brighten and warm up the space is to bring in organic elements, such as a bowl of fresh fruit on the kitchen counter or a vase of seasonal flowers on a console table or nightstand. A beautiful bowl of lemons adds a bright touch to a dining room table, and the fresh citrus scent is clean and homey.
Set Your Dining Table
Style your dining room table with a simple setting that still evokes a sense of entertainment and family gatherings. Choose dining room furniture that is complementary to the space so it doesn’t appear overcrowded. Being able to move easily around the room gives buyers the sense that the dining room is spacious. Use a light hand when creating a tablescape. You may choose to set the table with dinnerware, but this is not necessary. A simple centerpiece of fresh fruit or flowers is enough to create a pleasing focal point to help a staged home sell quickly.
Replace Burned out Light Bulbs
Great lighting is everything when staging your home for prospective buyers. You can set the mood, showcase a space, and draw attention to a focal point with the right use of lighting. If your budget allows, upgrade lighting fixtures to give your space an instant update. Make sure light bulbs are new and lighting fixtures are all working properly.
Keep Each Room Tidy
If you’re staging a home that is still furnished, it’s important to make sure each room is tidy. Make sure all beds are made, nightstands are clear of clutter, and closets are organized. Style the master bedroom in a neutral decor scheme, and make up any guest bedroom or home office spaces to showcase their potential.
Freshen up the Bathroom
Hang freshly laundered hand towels in the bathroom and remove all personal toiletries. Polish fixtures and switch out hardware if it looks worn or dated. Keep countertops clear of all personal hygiene products including items in the shower. Remove all cleaning and maintenance products like plungers, toilet brushes, and air fresheners. Clear out drawers and closets to maximize the appearance of storage. If you’re still living in the house, only store toiletry items you use daily and keep them neatly stowed when not in use.
More Ways to Shop
- How-to Guides