Monday, August 10, 2015

((10)) Home Staging Tips

There's a little house in the middle of East Texas that has a bed that calls my name, every night. 
There's a hallway that echoes the sounds of a pair of little feet pitter pattering.
And, at the end of that hallway is a pretty pink room, decorated for my sweet baby girl.
There are photos hung on the wall that stir memories made in this house.... her first steps.... her first words.... tears and hugs... a husband's sweat and hard work to make a home... meals made... the sound of the ice cream truck on Sundays... and the squeal of excitement as he turns in our drive...
This house has a backyard that has a few "low spots".... spots that fill with water when it rains, and tiny feet jump into them to splash mud from head to toe.
Around the side of the yard is a garden that took three years to get the way I wanted it.
Across the fence is an elderly couple that meet us at the fence when they see us, just to say hello, and talk about nothing.
Down the street the smell of burgers wafts through the air.... we've eaten those burgers before, because the empty nesters that live in that house love to have neighbors over for his famous grilling recipes....
Home, sweet home.
Never a siren.  Never a fear.  A cozy neighborhood tucked in the tall pine trees of Deep East Texas.
It is difficult to even write these words.... But, in light of our new endeavors (both my husband and I are now working an hour away), we have decided to put our home on the market. 
Though we cherish the pink bedroom with butterflies fluttering across the walls, and giggle when we glance at my husband's "Bazinga!" poster in his man cave, we know the harsh reality of staging a home for a buyer who doesn't feel their heartstrings pulled at things like that....
So, I thought today's post should reflect what we are dealing with in our home - staging for a buyer.

10 Home Staging Tips

1.  Clean - If there was ever a time that you needed to scrub your home to a sterile point, it is now.  Baseboards, ceiling fans, windows, nooks and crannies, cabinet kick plates, grout, etc.... this is not the time to open a closet and stuff everything inside.  Scrub every inch. 
2.  Purge - Learn to live with only the necessities.  The best way to make your home look uncluttered and open, is to remove the extra stuff.  As a matter of fact, we have rented a storage building to place holiday items, extra décor items, etc.  You even want your garage to look uncluttered, and your attic easily accessible to people like an inspector.  Throw away what no one will want, have a yard sale to get rid of things you don't want to keep but someone else may want, and move the things that you simply can't part with to a storage building (off site). 
3. Go With Neutrals - When purchasing a home, a buyer wants to be able to see their "stuff" in it.  If you decorate with kitschy items or use bold colors, it makes it difficult for them to mentally put their stamp on the home.  Your decor may be beautiful, but it may not be the buyer's taste.  Going neutral provides them with a blank canvas, so to speak.  (As I stated before, we love the pink in my daughter's room.  It is a wonderful color for a little girl, but they may not have a daughter to decorate for.  For that reason, we are giving the room a few coats of a neutral grey.)


4. Brighten Things Up - Replace burned out bulbs with new ones, raise or open window coverings, etc.  Light adds appeal, and it will make the space seem more open and larger. 

5. Remove Personalized Items - Take personal items (such as gallery wall photos, family photos, etc.) out.  As I said before, the buyer is going to want to put their stamp on the home, mentally, during their walk through.  It is difficult for them to imagine their things in a room with your photos surrounding them.

6. Be Mindful of Pets - I know, pets are members of our families.  There is simply no way I will relocate my sweet puppies to sell my house.  I do have backyard chickens and a goat, though, that will be living at my mom's house while we sell.  Though our home is on 3/4 of an acre, it is not a farm.  We live in a neighborhood, our goat is a pygmy goat, and there are stipulations to keeping "livestock".  Because our chicken coop is clean and our goat is small, we are allowed to keep them, however, the next owner of this home may not be interested in goats and chickens.  Removing the animals from the property will help neutralize the space.  Also, if your home is being shown, and you need to leave (typically your home will be shown by the agent), take your pets who are staying with you.  Dogs, especially, can be unexpectedly territorial.  Don't leave them behind (they may scare the buyer, and it may cause the animal stress).  Go to a dog park, a friend or family member's home, drop them off at doggy day care, etc. 

7. Scents - Clean is a good smell.  Be cautious, though.  Cleaners and other scents (candles, wax melts, etc.) can be overwhelming, and some can be repulsive to certain people.  Be mindful of that.  Though you may love to put a candle in every room, it may force a buyer out of the home.  You wouldn't want that.

8. Plants - Add a couple of house plants (real) to the home.  They filter the air and make it cleaner.  It will also add some extra (neutral) décor to the rooms.  Fresh floral arrangements add appeal, as well.

9. Coffee, Tea, Refreshments - Though you need not have a huge spread, if you are expecting a showing or are hosting an open house, making a pot of coffee, having tea or lemonade to offer, and maybe a plate of cookies out will make the buyer linger.  The longer they linger, the more they'll look.  Offer the refreshment, but don't be pushy.

10. Background Noise - Typically, you won't be present for a showing (the real estate agent will be).  But, if you are in the home, remember to turn off televisions, radios, etc.  Background noise will make the buyer hurry through the showing, because it makes them feel as though they are intruding on your personal time. 

 We've got a little more work to do before we place the "FOR SALE" sign in the front yard, but we are so close!  I'll take you on a before and after tour once it is on the market.

Fingers crossed, these tips will help our home sell fast!

Happy Monday!

1 comment:

  1. Oh Heather it sounds like you and Gary have it all together I know it's a phenomenal amount of work I wish I were close by we could make it fun if I could help you good post great ininformation