Top 5 Ways to Stage Your Home Properly

Before selling your home, it is crucial that you prepare it properly. The recent recession and real estate crash has made staging a home more important than ever. Even first time home buyers realize there are many more houses for sale and their options can be confusing. Staging your home properly will help it stand above the crowd of houses on the market.

Home staging is a relatively new phrase, but it also describes a growing industry. Home staging companies are appearing in even the most depressed markets. Many DIY-types prefer to stage their homes themselves. You can find numerous websites, how-to books and publications that offer valuable suggestions.

However, along with the many nuances and tips to prepare your home for sale, there are some rules that you should always follow, without exception.

These are the top ways to stage your home properly:

  1. Say goodbye to clutter. This is, the most important rule of staging. Often, professional stagers will recommend you get rid of up to one-half of your furniture and all of your personal “stuff,” regardless of its meaning or value. If you are strongly attached to your personal items, store them offsite, away from hands-reach temptation to put them back out.
  2. Group and float furniture whenever possible. You might believe that moving your furniture against walls makes your rooms look bigger. Wrong. Floating furniture away from walls, repositioned into conversation groups, makes rooms appear larger. Create your floating groupings with traffic flow in mind to avoid problems and create obvious traffic patterns.
  3. Transform useless space into valuable space. Much like “junk drawers,” many homes have “junk rooms,” that are wasted space devoted to collecting stuff. You could even add a chair, small table and a lamp in a tiny nook to visually increase square footage and display new, useful space.
  4. Maximize–or upgrade–your lighting. Should you visit staged or model homes, you get a warm, comfortable feeling. The primary reason: Outstanding lighting. Target around a total of 100 watts for each 50 square feet of space. Use a combination of ambient, task and accent lighting, if possible, to generate a bright, but warm feeling.
  5. Make your rooms look larger and more appealing with paint. Use paint as simple proven ideas to enlarge rooms and/or make them “flow” better. For example, to make a room appear larger, use the same color as in the adjacent room. Similarly, sun rooms, Florida rooms or enclosed porches appear more inviting when painted green to “match” the outdoors. Living rooms should be neutral, including warm honey or softer blues or greens.

Source: “15 secrets to selling your home”  Leah Hennen  HGTV  2010

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