Want to sell your home quickly and for top dollar? "Staging" can help. "Staging" is presenting your home in its best and most appealing light to the majority of home-buyers.
In theory, "staging" isn't hard or costly, but in reality, many homeowners find it difficult because it's often hard to see something objectively when we love it.
An easy way to see effectively "staged" homes is to visit decorated models. Decorating a model is expensive, but builders are willing to invest the cost because they understand just how well a "staged" home sells. You too can profit from this knowledge.
Basic Staging Rules
#1 - Clean. Your home must sparkle! To achieve this level is usually only feasible by hiring a cleaning crew. In fact, having a cleaning service return weekly while your house is for sale is probably a pretty good investment. Get your windows professionally cleaned inside and out too.
#2 - Fix. Got a dripping faucet or a cracked tile? These will send the wrong message to potential buyers. Getting them fixed before you put your house on the market is a smart idea.
#3 - Eliminate Clutter. The "50% Rule" requires that you eliminate the clutter in your home by at least half. This may be the hardest rule of all! We love our clutter - - it reflects our memories, hobbies, and values. But it doesn't sell homes! Clutter makes homes seem smaller and disorganized. (Have you ever noticed that the really expensive stores seem to have an expansive, clutter-free layout, while "cheap" stores are often a jumble of merchandise?) Even the ancient practice of Feng Shui has as a central focus the elimination of clutter.
#4 - Executive Neutral. Neutral colors sell. It's a fact. Try to convey an image of quality and neutrality. Potential buyers walking through your home want to imagine themselves as the owners. If you use styles or colors they would never select, you've just turned them off. Staying high-quality, but neutral is safest.
#5 - De-personalize. Remove objects that your potential buyers won't be able to identify with. For example, political and religious items may turn off whole groups of buyers, because they cannot "imagine" your home as their home. Buying a home is an emotional decision, and you want potential buyers to make an emotional connection with your home by being able to "see" themselves in it.