Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Home Staging - Make Your Home Appealing to Buyers

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Staging your Home to Sell (Complete Idiot's Guide to)

It's a buyers market right now and if you're getting ready to sell your home, staging your home is something you should consider - giving your home the edge over all the others.

I'm recommending the book "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Staging Your Home to Sell" by Julie Dana and Marcia Layton Turner because it gives a complete overview of home staging from start to finish.

The book defines home staging as a new service designed to help prepare your home to sell while maximizing its appeal to potential buyers. When you "stage" a home, you are making changes that will improve the opportunity to sell the property.

Home staging presents your home in its best light because buyers are known to choose a home based on how much space and amenities the property has.

The first part of home staging is determining how much you want to spend to stage your home. Most home stagers recommend spending 1-3% of the asking price for the home. If your home is listed at $500,000, you would spend between $5,000 to $15,000 for home staging. This price would include carpet and floor cleaning, rug replacement (if necessary), electrical or plumbing improvements, painting, new lighting and some light landscaping. The percentage you spend would depend on the age and overall condition of your home.

If you're balking at spending money to stage your home, consider this statistic - the sooner you sell your home, the more likely you will receive close to or above your asking price. The longer the house sits on the market, the lower the selling price will ultimately be - you've lost the "buzz" factor.

After you've determined what, if any, improvements you need to make to stage your home in an effective manner, you must tackle the clutter. This means removing all personal effects - framed photographs, knick-knacks, posters, artificial plants, trophies - anything that fills your flat surfaces and makes your home look cluttered. Clear all paper off your desk and other surfaces as well.

Take down old curtains - let the natural light fill your home. Remove old area rugs and extra furniture. Buy a nice set of towels which you will only display when the home is shown. Don't wash them - keep them nice and fluffy and new.

This is a good time to get rid of those extra items you don't want to move to your new home. Put it away, give it away, store it or sell it. Consider renting a temporary storage unit for the time your home is for sale. Store those items you want to bring to the new home but need to clear out for home staging purposes. Consignment shops will take furniture in good condition to re-sell for a small fee.

Remember, light and spacious are the keywords. And the more you do to stage your home for sale, the less you'll have to do once it sells.

1 comment:

Marcia Layton Turner said...

Hi Wendy,
Thanks so much for the kind words about our book! And you are so right about home staging being critical now - sometimes it can make the difference between selling and not selling a home.

Doing what you suggest - cleaning, opening windows, etc. - that alone can enhance the appearance of a home.

Thanks again,