Summer is the season we usually associate with summer holidays, travels, outdoor activities and mainly stay-away-from work attitude. Everyone likes to bask in the sun and enjoy refreshing cocktails on exotic beaches, go with the family in the calm rural surroundings or simply enjoy the small things you like to do but never have the time to. Having these carefree thoughts in mind makes it easy to forget that in many places around the country the summer is also the best season to move into a new desired home, which also entails selling or renting your old property. Staging the house can bring success on the market and help you maximize on the price and sell the property more quickly, especially if you have to do it within a deadline. Following these easy staging tips will help you style your house and see the results fast.
- Impress your visitors with a stunning welcome appeal. Many people will consider a quick tour of your home’s outside and decide on the spot if it is worth to take a look inside. Make sure you wash sidings and walkaways, plant blooming flowers and fresh greenery. Mown the lawn, wash the windows and repaint or stain the porch if needed. Your porch will look inviting if you put there some nice plants in bloom and a few pieces of neat porch furniture. If you expect potential buyers in the evening, do not forget to keep your porch lights on and even illuminate the front walk with subtle solar lights to add an extra touch.
- Say goodbye to the clutter. Clean and shining floors, sparkling windows, neat shelves – every surface in the house should be sparkling clean. Less clutter means more space in the eyes of the potential buyers, so getting rid of everything unnecessary is a must. One of the major contributors to a cluttered look is having too much furniture. Staging professionals often advise that for a room to look spacious as much as half of the existing furniture should be removed. This drastic measure won’t be hard if you are planning a move – simply pack everything you don’t need or use at the moment and put it in the storeroom or even in some nice neighbor’s garage. If your house is relatively big or you don’t have the time to do all the tedious cleaning you may go and hire professional cleaners to do the job.
- Make the house look bigger. Again painting plays major role in achieving fresh and spacious effect. A room will look bigger if you paint it the same color as the adjacent room. In most cases achieving a seamless look of your small kitchen and dining room will make both rooms feel like one big space. Another trick to creating the illusion of more space is to paint the walls the same color as the drapery. Do not go experimenting with fresh new colors and simply stick to sophisticated neutral colors (which don’t mean you need to go all white, either).
- Regroup the furniture. One common myth is that a room will look bigger if all the furniture is pushed against the walls but that’s not the case. Group your furniture away from walls and make symmetrical arrangements that usually work well. Use pairs of sofas, chairs or even lamps to create cozy conversational space. It will make the room look more comfy and, again, it will open it and make it look larger. A large empty table in the dining room can look bare and uninviting so styling it up can add an appeal. Do not go for anything big and oversized that can be considered too formal, try arranging some small vessels instead. Look at every detail with a visitor’s eye and try to figure out what will you consider annoying and distracting.
- Decorate with style. Once the furniture is reduced and rearranged, it’s time to bring in some small elements that will make the home appealing. Use vases with beautiful cut flowers, a basket with fresh fruits in the kitchen or dining room and a bowl of lemons beside the sink. When it comes to eye-pleasing accessorizing, have in mind the simple rule that odd numbers are preferable, in particular three. When grouping arrange by putting the big ones at the back and small ones in front of them. To maximize the effect, group the accessories by color, shape or other unifying element.
- Create style and warmness using home lightning. Most of the houses are improperly lighted so the first step to remedy the problem is to increase the wattage of the lights. Try to achieve comfy and sufficient light by ensuring 100 watts for each 50 square feet. Do not rely on only one or two light sources in a room, have them all spread around the space and make sure you are using the three types of lights: ambient, task (pendant, reading) and ascent. Turn on the lights prior to the visit of your potential buyers and make sure that every light bulb is working.
- Bedroom is the key to closing a deal. Make it gender-neutral and appealing to everyone. Use clean style, free of personal items and clutter. Go for luxurious linen and soft colors, tasteful artwork and discrete lightning. Clean the closets to show off your storage space – it always ranks higher in the eyes of the buyers and it certainly helps selling houses.
- Take advantage of your extra rooms. Most of the houses have one or two small rooms used solely to gather junk. Repurpose them into something that will actually add value to your home. Place yourself again in the shoes of a buyer – what is likely that he might like to see there? Add a comfortable armchair, a small table and a lamp in a stairwell nook and it will turn into a cozy reading spot. Use your imagination and you can transform each unused space into an office, guest room or another kids’ room.
By following these staging tips your home will be ready for you potential buyers’ visit and it’s time to put some final efforts to close the deal. When they arrive, entice them to explore the whole house. Ease the atmosphere by putting some nice music to play. Smile and be friendly but do not behave too informal – stick to the professional business level. Usually people tend to remember the first and the last thing they see so use this notion when showing them your home. Hopefully what you’ve learned here will help you sell or rent your old property quickly and you’ll be ready to make the move for your new life in a new, more exciting place. All you have to do next is to look for and choose a reliable moving company to get the job done.
Brian Jamesson, an expert contributor to Xpress Movers’ Blog