There’s no doubt about it—a well-staged and renovated house will sell for more money. How much effort should you put into staging your house? If you follow every tip in this article, it would cost about $750 and require about 30 hours of work. Does that sound like a big investment? When you consider the improvements like the ones suggested here could increase the sales price of your home by $5,000, that’s not too bad! And $5,000 is a conservative estimate. Here are some useful tips that will help you make a great first impression on potential homebuyers visiting your home.
Tip: Paint a couple walls and clean the rest
Cost: $100 / 2 gallons of paint & misc. tools
Time: 9 hours
If most of your walls are painted with a neutral color, pick a couple walls in the living areas and the master bedroom where you can make a bolder statement. Homebuyers often want to personalize the wall colors after they buy. But creating a couple accent walls will help them see the potential even if they eventually choose a different color. Not sure which color to buy? Many paint companies like Sherwin-Williams pick a color that’s trending and label it as, ”Paint color of the year.”
There’s no need to paint every wall in the house, but you should inspect every wall. Wipe off as many scuff marks as you can, and touch-up the rest with the paint you hopefully have left over from the last time the wall was painted. And don’t forget to clean/touch-up the trim and doors.
Tip: Show off the good views and screen the not-so-good
Cost: $150 / 4 sets of sheer curtains with new rods
Time: 2 hours
If the windows on the back of your home look out upon a stunning vista, make sure not to obstruct that view with curtains or blinds. If your next-door neighbor does not share your passion for well-thought-out landscape design, a manicured lawn or regular home exterior maintenance, then you may not want to accentuate that particular view. Install a set of sheer curtains over the windows on that side of the house that allow plenty of light to shine in while obscuring the undesirable scenery.
Tip: Eliminate bad smells
Cost: $50 / Carpet cleaner rental
Time: 5 hours
Carpets are like giant stink-sponges. You’re probably used to the smell, but no offense, your carpets probably stink. Carpet cleaning is absolutely a DIY project, and a carpet cleaner can be rented for less than $50 per day.
Also, it’s probable that you will be getting the occasional last-minute showing that require immediate evacuation, so it’s a good idea to avoid cooking bacon or sautéing garlic while your house is for sale. One option is to cook your delicious but super-smelly dishes outside on the grill.
Are you feeling overwhelmed? Our real estate agents can provide a detailed analysis on the value of your home, and help manage these renovations and staging exercises for you! Imagine a hands-off process that boosts the value of your home. Selling that home is also an easy and simple process with us. If you would like to check the current value of your home now, use our home value tool.
Tip: Clear it out
Cost: $25 / beer and or wine
Time: 6 hours
Before you list your house, it’s important to declutter and depersonalize. That means you need to clear out 50% of the stuff in your closets, kitchen cabinets, and off the countertops. It also means removing your collection of saltshakers from the mantle and all those family photos from the walls and end tables. What to do with all that stuff? Consider asking a neighbor or family member if you could temporarily store it in their garage or basement. Of course, you will need to sweeten the deal with some sort of gift. A storage locker is the other alternative.
Cost: $150 / 15 storage bins
Time: 4 hours
There’s no reason to get rid of all your belongings before listing your home, but you should organize the stuff you do decide to keep around. Consider packing the items that occupy your storage closets and garage shelves in large storage bins. This will send the message to potential buyers that you’re the organized type who knows how to take care of their property. An additional benefit of this plan is that a bunch of your belongings will already be packed up and ready for the upcoming move. Clear bins work great because you can see what’s inside them.
Tip: Set the scene
Cost: $75 / dinner set and 4 wine glasses
Time: 1 hour
Here is an exception to the “declutter” rule. Think about setting a scene where a potential buyer could envision themselves actually living in your home. If you have a comfy looking chair with a good view, consider placing a coffee cup and homey magazine or tablet on the adjoining end table. If you don’t already own one, buy an attractive four-piece dinnerware set and place them out, along with a couple of wine glasses, on the dining room table.
Our agents already have existing relationships with excellent staging companies. They can quickly bring in new temporary furniture or accessories to complete this entire process overnight. Plus, no clean up! If you’d like to talk to one of our agents now, go here.
Tip: Spruce it up
Cost: $150 / Comforter set & 6 throw pillows
Time: 1 hour
Large king and queen size beds can dominate the landscape of a bedroom. Since the bed is going to be the first thing a person notices when they walk into the room, it’s important that it looks good. A new comforter will impress visitors, and when you sell your house, you get to bring it along to your new home—everybody wins. Also, inexpensive throw pillows can rejuvenate the other beds and tired furniture.
Tip: Light it up
Cost: $50 / 20 LED light bulbs
Time: 2 hours
If you haven’t done it already, replace all the lightbulbs in your house with LED bulbs. Be sure to leave a note where it will be seen announcing that all the bulbs are new and should not need changing for years to come. This tells potential buyers that you care about the environment. You’ll need to do a little research before you buy. Not only will you have to decide what brightness to buy, you’ll also need to pick the appropriate light temperature for each room. And don’t forget that some LED bulbs are not dimmer switch friendly.
The Bottom Line
Even if you were to hire out the painting and carpet cleaning, the extra money you make on the house could be in the thousands. Especially if you’re working with an agent who is familiar with your market and knows how to price a home. The only downside to following staging tips like these is that your home may be improved so much, you may not want to leave it.
Hopefully this article has inspired you to make some easy and inexpensive renovations to your home. If you need any advice, just say hello. Remember, you can check your home value here, or browse listings here (that’s always fun). Thanks for reading!
– Gate Arty & the Group – Keller Williams Realty