Staging a house is one of the first steps you take when beginning your journey towards selling your home. It’s one of the most important as well, as ensuring potential buyers see your home for all it’s worth can increase your chances of selling faster- and allow you to receive higher bids. For some, this task seems simple, but for others, it can seem very daunting. Presenting your house in a way that looks clean and clutter-free is vital to reel in buyers- especially when taking photos or hosting open houses. Whether you’re looking to make a few upgrades or simply sprucing up your space, here are a few guidelines to make the staging process a success.

First things first, work on the front of your house. In the buying and selling business, curb appeal is everything. Any potential buyers that view your home will immediately judge if the house is worth exploring by the front. Even if you have a completely newly renovated interior, if the exterior is not up to par, buyers may not be interested in touring at all. Don’t make this mistake! If your paint is chipped, repaint it. Powerwash your driveway, wash your windows and replace any dead grass- anything to freshen up the place. Additionally, consider having your front lawn lightly landscaped before putting your house on the market, fresh flowers and greenery are a crowd-pleaser.

People want a home to feel ‘homey’, and nothing says that quite like a front porch. If your home has a porch of any kind, be sure it is decorated. Furnish it with some rocking chairs, a few potted plants, and a welcoming doormat. A great tip is to leave your porch lights on during the evenings so that your home is visible to any potential buyers that may drive by.

As we move inside, we want to start with a clean slate. This means doing a deep clean of the whole house. Dust and dirt of any kind on the baseboards or shelving will only scare buyers away. You want everything from your floors to your countertops to shine! Don’t underestimate the importance of this step. If you have a large house or you feel overwhelmed, don’t be afraid to call in the pros for some help in getting the job done. It’s at this stage that you would do any renovations needed. This may include replacing worn-out appliances or refinishing floors. Next, take a look at your walls. If there are any unconventional colors, repaint them with a nice, neutral color that is suited for a wide variety of styles.

Now, it’s time to get rid of that clutter we talked about. Before starting to decorate your home for staging, it’s recommended that you go through your house and begin to declutter your belongings. Even if this requires moving some items into storage, making sure you have minimal decoration and items on display in your home is essential. You want it to feel open and airy. If you have a lot of large, clunky appliances out on your kitchen counter, it makes space appear smaller to buyers.

Finally, it comes time to actually stage your home. While you want to make your home look stylish and beautiful, it also needs to feel lived in. To achieve this, add in some homey touches like fresh cut flowers, lighting a candle or two, or setting out a bowl of fruit or cookies when preparing for open houses. If you need help in the styling process, there are plenty of great inspiration photos on Pinterest to get you started and give you an idea of how to arrange and style your home! Additionally, look at some of the listings on the Properties tab of our website as examples for what staged homes typically look like. Just remember, less is more. You want the home to speak for itself!