Staging Mistakes You Might Be Making
Deciding to sell your home is a big decision; this is after all, your oasis at the end of a long day. You have spent a lot of time in your home, and have most likely decorated it to suit your personal taste and style. Now for whatever reason, whether you require something bigger or smaller or need a new home in a new city, you are selling.
The process of selling can be time consuming. Homes are usually not market ready and therefore require some work. And lets not ignore the other challenge of selling; the emotional one. It can be very hard to let a home go; there are many memories associated with family, friends and life events. It is therefore in your favour to sell quickly. But how can you present your home so that it appeals to the majority of potential buyers? The answer is staging.
Home staging is a marketing tool used to present your home in its best possible light. The main goal of staging is to create a look that will appeal to the most number of active buyers. It showcases your home as a space that potential purchasers can envision themselves living in. It is very different from how you decorate it for yourself; a staged home should be devoid of personal touches so that buyers can see it as a house and not YOUR home.
However, just as acting as a realtor is not recommended, staging your home yourself is not advised either. After all, staging requires training, skills, knowledge, and vision. Not using a professional stager can cause your home to sit on the market longer and garner a much lower price upon selling. Why? What mistakes can a non-professional make? Lets examine what some homeowners do wrong.
#1. Being too emotionally attached to your home as you are trying to sell it is a common mistake. Unfortunately, you are not able to see your home objectively. A professional home stager will be able to notice the areas in need of a dose of neutrality, change, or repair. You need to keep in mind that you are selling a potential lifestyle; the home therefore needs to be a blank canvas. Your personal touches such as photographs need to be removed. Although they provide you with meaning and comfort, they prevent potential buyers from seeing this as anything other than your home.
However, any changes in the appearance of your home will be beneficial. Not only will any staging or remodelling help to sell it, but it will also look less familiar to you which will create an emotional distance. The trick is to no longer think of it as your home; as soon as the decision is made to sell, depersonalize and mentally move on.
#2. Furniture can make or break a room; there are numerous errors that homeowners can make in regards to home furnishings. Staging a room involves proper furniture placement. Stagers are trained to choose the correct furniture in terms of size and scale. Often homeowners push couches and chairs up against the walls, thinking that this will showcase the space. However, what this does is create not only a boxy shape, but it also makes a large room look empty and a smaller room feel cluttered.
Similarly, homeowners sometimes neglect the scale of the room, and fill it with furniture that is either too large or too small for the space. “Potential buyers look to your furniture as a guide for how they envision themselves living in the space”. If the furniture is too large for the room, they will assume that there isn’t enough space. If the furniture is too small, instead of marvelling over the size of the room, buyers instead assume that they will also have trouble making the space feel full.
#3. Homeowners are not trained to understand the psychology of the home buyer. They may not realize that potential purchasers are very interested in storage space. Professional stagers always advise homeowners to empty their closets and cupboards by 50%. Even if your home has an abundance of storage space, overstuffed closets and cupboards will make it appear as though storage is limited. All closets need to have their available space highlighted.
#4. You may have spent hours pouring over paint swatches, choosing what you thought were the perfect colours for your space. However, when selling your home, neutrals are the colours of choice. A bold colour, especially on the walls, can be off-putting to potential purchasers. It may not be to their taste, or it may not go with their furnishings. Although you may assume that any new homeowner will want to paint with their own colours, not all purchasers want to move in and immediately paint. Furthermore, the bold colour may be so off-putting that they can’t even envision themselves living there; the distraction is too great.
However, some homeowners go overboard with the neutrality which can create a home with a flat appearance. Professional stagers are trained to create visual interest with purposefully placed pops of colour. Accessories such as pillows and artwork should be included in the room’s décor in order to draw the buyer’s eye around the space. Too many pops of bold colour though, have the potential to create focal points where you don’t want them. Professional stagers know how to incorporate just the right amount of visual drama.
Selling a home can be challenging. Using a professional stager, such as a Certified UltimateStager™, ensures that your home will be presented in its best possible light. Even if you as a homeowner are aware of what is required to stage your home, executing the staging is equally as challenging. After all, without training it is very difficult to know how to showcase a home to its full potential. Staging is a marketing tool; in the hands of a professional it can be wielded with purpose.