Everyone wants to get the best possible price when selling their home. In order to do this, you’ll have to show your house to its best advantage to attract the right buyer.
Home staging can make a huge difference in accomplishing that goal. In this article, we’ll give you some tips and tricks for staging your home in the Lone Star State.
What Is Home Staging?
Home staging is a marketing strategy intended to highlight your home's best features and minimize its flaws. The goal is to make your house more appealing to buyers and help them imagine the best use of the space.
Staging a house may include:
- Increasing curb appeal
- Cleaning, decluttering, and depersonalizing your spaces
- Rearranging or changing furniture and decor to best showcase the rooms
Who Pays for Home Staging?
Your real estate agent may be willing to pay for at least some of the costs associated with staging your home, but it's largely your responsibility as the homeowner.
Think of it as an investment. A well-staged home will get the best possible price. It can also help you move your property off the market faster.
This isn't just speculation. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), homes sell 88% faster and for 20% more money. A whopping 82% of buyer's agents say that staging a home makes it easier for their clients to see a property as a future home.
The experts have also compiled data on the expected costs. Realtors report a median cost of $1500 when you use a staging service and $300 when your seller's agent is willing to do the work.
Another option is to handle the home staging yourself, but the NAR doesn't have data on the relative cost for obvious reasons.
Steps To Staging a Home
Regardless of which approach you take, DIY, real estate agent, or professional stagers, the basic process of staging a house for sale will be the same.
Generally speaking, the home staging steps are as follows:
- Decluttering the house (inside and out), particularly your personal belongings
- Deep cleaning the whole house
- Patching up any problem areas
- Repainting to neutral tones, or at least doing touch-ups
- Changing or rearranging furniture and decor
- Manage the smells in your home by removing any foul odors and adding good ones
The Do's and Don'ts of Staging
There are a few basic principles that should guide your Texas home staging efforts.
- Focus the most on the living room, kitchen, and primary bed/bath
- Make rooms feel bigger using natural light, mirrors, and minimalism
- Move your home's color palette toward neutral
- Keep counters and closets as clear as possible
- Place furniture for easy navigability
- Assign each room a well-defined purpose and stage it appropriately
- Add relaxing but politically neutral art like landscapes or abstracts
- Pressure-wash the home's exterior and touch up the door and mailbox
- Clean up your landscaping and add plants to the inside and outside of the home
- Get your home professionally photographed
- Leave any special or "unique" decorating choices in place
- Strip all color out of your home – totally neutral is totally boring
- Push all furniture up against the walls, making the rooms look smaller
- Leave visible evidence of pets or children’s clutter
- Do major renovations (like the kitchen) unless you're having trouble moving the house
How To Stage A House For Sale Yourself
In addition to all the general advice above, here are some things to keep in mind to staging rooms to their best effect.
How To Stage a Living Room
According to real estate professionals, the living room is one of the most important staging steps, so you'll want to spend a significant amount of time here.
Pay special attention to traffic flow when rearranging furniture and removing unnecessary pieces. Arrange seating to create a cozy conversational area. Include a few throw pillows and blankets for color and character, but don't overdo it.
You can get that lived-in look without the clutter with bookshelves that contain both neatly arranged books and a few decorative items. Consider adding fresh or faux flowers and houseplants, and pick one of the main walls for a large piece of art.
How to Stage the Primary Bed and Bath
The primary bedroom and bathroom are also critical staging rooms.
Minimize the amount of furniture in the primary bed. Pull the bed out of any corners so that the headboard touches the most prominent wall and both sides of the bed can be accessed. Keep the bedding fresh and add a few pillows and a throw blanket, but don't overdo it.
Remove personal items, and organize your closets, shelves, cabinets, drawers, and countertops. Like the kitchen, the primary bath should be sparkling.
If the primary bedroom is smaller, remove any unnecessary furniture like a dresser, but do keep at least one bedside table. Place the bed so that there's floor space when you first walk in through the door.
How To Stage a Kitchen
The kitchen is the third-most important space to stage. Buyers are looking for cleanliness, storage space, counter space, and good lighting, so these are the things you should focus on for the kitchen.
Keep all the cupboards, pantries, and fridge neat and organized. Any open shelves and counters should be clear with a few decorative and functional items. Consider repainting the cabinets or updating the hardware if your kitchen needs a refresh.
Make sure the kitchen is sparkling and deodorized before each showing.
How to Stage Problem Areas
Aside from these three areas, you may want to pay closer attention when staging rooms with eyesores or other problems.
The trick to weird rooms or awkward room features is to find a way to make that problem look like a plus. You can do this by giving them a purpose. Stairways to nowhere can become bookshelves. Entryway nooks can become key stations. Take your target audience into account when making these choices. What would your ideal buyer consider a good use of space? But aim your ideas to appeal to the broadest number of people possible.
Consider staging a small or "extra" room as a home office. More people are working from home, and this can turn an area that seems like a liability into a positive use of space. This can be especially useful for those tiny "nonconforming bedrooms."
For rooms with ugly views, don't try to close the view out with solid blinds or curtains – instead, use semi-sheer window treatments to conceal while getting natural light.
Texas Home Staging
The goal of home staging is to make your property as attractive as possible for potential buyers. This can help you sell your home in Texas faster and for a higher price. Home staging is known to get a strong return on investment, so it's a task worth undertaking for sellers and seller's agents alike.
Written and Published by: VanEd