Who coined the adage ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’? Whomever it was definitely was not buying or selling real estate! Buyers will make snap judgements about what they see (and smell) when browsing your property. Don’t turn potential buyers away because of a few blunders.
I’ve compiled 15 top tips to help you showcase your home in its best light, entice buyers and eventually achieve a successful sale. Take a look!
1) THINK LIKE A BUYER
The first step towards staging your home to sell isn’t a colour change or an arrangement of furniture. It’s a mindset shift.
From this moment on, your home is no longer a place where cherished memories were made. It’s a product on the global real estate marketplace.
Homeowners who have the best results detach themselves from their home and look at it through the critical eyes of a buyer.
As your REALTOR® and trusted advisor, I’m here to guide the marketing of that ‘product’ so you can sell smart.
2) INCREASE CURB APPEAL
Did you know ...
A REALTOR’S® sign in your yard attracts attention.
interested buyers cruise neighbourhoods to view homes for sale long before they’ve contacted a real estate agent? You don’t want your house scratched off their list because it has little to no curb appeal.
Here’s how you can take advantage and entice potential buyers to step inside your home.
Keep the lawn mowed regularly, wash the front windows, consider planting greenery or vibrant flowers (hint: Flowers are foolproof remedies). For the more ambitious, re-paint or stain the front porch.
3) EVERY SURFACE SHOULD SPARKLE
Perform a deep cleaning. Hire help if you need to. From floors to windows to counters to bath tiles, every surface needs to sparkle. I know it may sound rudimentary, but this seemingly small step impacts buyers greatly.
When selling, aim to create a totally neutral space.
We want to remove any obstacle that could cloud the buyer’s mind. You don’t want buyers silently fixating on dusty hardwoods or carpet stains. They should be busy falling in love with your home.
4) CLEAR OUT THE CLUTTER
To you and me, it’s our cherished and most precious valuables. To picky buyers it’s just ‘stuff.’ It’s a bitter pill I know, but remember, when selling, it’s our job to create the most neutral environment that appeals to the widest audience of buyers possible.
Remove anything from view that is not an essential piece of furniture. But sometimes, even furniture pieces must go. If you need extra storage, consider storing off-site or to a helpful family member’s garage.
5) KEEP IT FRESH
Remember, flowers are foolproof, but also remember ...
With all your new-found space gained by removing clutter, think about tastefully decorating countertops and tables with a bowl of fresh fruit. Lemons are ideal.
Your home should be clean, but not bland. Fresh fruit and flowers will help bridge that gap.
6) FIX FLOUNDERING FLOORS
It goes without saying, all floors should be given a thorough cleaning (remember to steam clean the carpets), and consider re-finishing your hardwood floors, if they are in poor shape.
7) PAINT IT NEUTRAL
Everyone, from home decorators to REALTORS®, recommend painting the interior of your home in neutral colours. Why? Step into the buyer’s shoes. They see everything with a dollar sign attached. They don’t want to buy a house and have to spend additional money fixing it up and painting it.
Besides, we want them to imagine living in your home instead of dreading a paint job.
Lastly, neutral colours such as creams make your home appear more appealing in online photographs (which is the first place buyers check when looking for properties to buy). Need a painter? I’ll refer you to one of my trusted contractors.
8) CREATE A NEUTRAL MASTER BEDROOM
Try to appeal to everyone with a clean and impersonal master bedroom. Start with neutral artwork, and clean, crisp linens. As a Certified Staging Professional, I will be happy to assist you here with a few pieces you can use to create a streamlined neutral bedroom.
9) SHOW OFF CLOSET SPACE
Ample closet space holds a lot of weight in the mind of your buyer. Even if your closet is on the small side, you still benefit by keeping it organized.
Tip: try to keep 20-30% of the space open, to create the feeling of spaciousness.
10) BREAK THE MONOTONY AND HELP BUYERS SEE POSSIBILITIES
If you have a handful of bedrooms, get creative! Turn one into an office, a children’s play room, or guest room. Help buyers see the possibilities your property will give them.
Warning: Try to avoid ‘dual-purpose’ rooms; such as a bedroom with a computer and office. Each room should have one purpose. This helps buyers get clear on how they will use the rooms for their purposes.
11) GIVE PURPOSE TO QUIRKY AREAS
Do you have room beneath the stairs or a nook or alcove? Get creative and don’t leave them bare. As your Certified Professional Home Stager, I can help draw out the potential of these unusual spaces.
12) BEWARE - PET ODOURS
This one is huge. If you have pets, have all fabrics steam cleaned and be vigilant about vacuuming and keeping the air fresh. Buyers should only be thinking your home is right for them -- not ‘when will this tour end so I can get out of here?’ Be mindful of sensitivities to smells and dander.
Also, when tours are scheduled, be sure to keep pet toys hidden from view.
13) ENCOURAGE EXPLORATION
As your Certified Home Stager, I’ll be glad to show you how you can use artwork, vignettes and other textures and materials to draw the eye of buyers and encourage buyers to continue walking through your home.
You don’t want buyers to feel as though they aren’t supposed to go in ‘that’ room. Make them feel welcome. I’ll show you how.
14) THE BACK YARD
Just as I advised to keep the front lawns mowed and manicured, the same applies to the back yard. No matter the size of your backyard, you can benefit from engaging the buyer’s imagination. Try to create a scene; backyard BBQs, quiet relaxation with friends, a flower oasis, or maybe even a zen-garden.
15) CREATE A LIFESTYLE WITH YOUR PROPERTY
Did you know your home and its surrounding neighbourhood has its own personality and vibe? I will work with you to show you how you can draw out that story and communicate it to your buyers all throughout your home.
BONUS: DON’T GO IT ALONE
You can read articles like this on my site or others and try to handle it all yourself but it is a feat a trained eye can master and simplify for you! You do not have to go it alone. As a REALTOR® and Certified Staging Professional, I’d be happy to work with you each step of the way to prepare your home for the Victoria Real Estate Market.
Call or text me anytime for advice at +1 (778) 678-1167 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for staging advice, home marketing tips, a home evaluation.
Let me handle the tough stuff for you.
I am here to help you start the next chapter in your life, and to have a successful sale of your property.