For the past five weeks, we've been looking at various aspects of presenting, or staging your home.
In the final part of this series, we'd like to recap on what we've learned, with a view to arriving at a successful formula to make your home look at its best.
Week 1: Letting Go of Your Stuff - click here to read the full article
Decluttering is often the biggest challenge facing sellers, so we thought we'd address the matter first. We looked at the fact that a very low percentage of buyers will be able to ignore your clutter and envision the home as their own. It's therefore imperative to take the "you" out of the home, with particular emphasis on family portraits and religious paraphernalia etc. For those who cannot bear to dump a lot of their stuff, we suggested that the owner of your local self-storage facility is your new best friend - a theme we returned to several more times in the series. Much better to have your stuff hidden in a lock-up than on display for your buyers.
Week 2: The Power of Neutral Decor - click here to read the full article
In this article, we looked at what should be done to make your home's appearance as widely acceptable as possible. This, again, involves removing your personality in some situations, touching up or replacing damaged paintwork and, in situations where more controversial color choices have been made, redecorating in neutral tones. The word neutrality is a vital one in home staging. It essentially refers to decorating choices that most people are likely to find attractive, and which also have the benefit of creating an airy, clean and spacious feel to rooms.
Week 3: The Critical Importance of Curb Appeal - click here to read the full article
We're all familiar with the well known phrase "You never get a second chance to make a first impression" and we started this article with the sobering statistic that 63% of home buyers will drop by a home if they like what they see in online images. This emphasizes how vital it is to pay great attention to what's known as curb appeal. Essentially curb appeal is that first image that buyers get of the home as they arrive. That all important initial impression sticks, of course, so you want to make sure everything is in top shape to get things off to a great start. This involves manicured lawns, pristine paintwork and wood, no pavement cracks or oil stains on the drive, clean windows etc, plus "quick fix" enhancements such as real, not fake, plants and flowers. We also emphasized that the home needs to look attractively lit at night, for those inquisitive buyers dropping by and those buyers who will only have time to view the home in the dark.
Week 4: Five Common Mistakes - click here to read the full article
Here we focused on five common staging errors that sellers make. These were never ignoring small details, never over-filling rooms with furniture, ornaments etc, keeping the personality out of your rooms, removing evidence of pets on viewing days and making that all important last minute inspection, especially if you have children or animals, who will often be oblivious to the importance of your visitors.
Week 5: Staging in a Hurry - click here to read the full article
The reality of home moves is that they often don't happen at a steady pace that suits careful, planned staging. We therefore took some time to look at what can be done when you have little or no time before you need to list, most usually when a sudden job relocation is involved. Top tips included addressing show stopping problems first and making use of self-storage to quickly get clutter out of rooms. We also emphasized how important it still is not to ignore small items like failed light bulbs or leaking faucets, particularly as it's reckoned most viewers will image there are maybe ten other hidden problems for every one they find themselves.
We hope you have enjoyed this series and that is has been helpful if you're currently listing or are about to. Taken as a whole, our five weeks' worth of advice should give you a pretty comprehensive formula for making your home look the very best it can. It's quite true to say that the home we inhabit is rarely the same home as the one we're selling. That's generally because are homes are, quite rightly, a reflection of ourselves, which needs to be neutralized by the time you start to show the property, as it's literally the case that no two buyers are the same. The overall goal of staging, therefore, is to make the home appeal to as wide a range of buyers as possible.
Please don't hesitate to contact us today if you'd like further, specific advice on this subject or any other aspect of real estate.