Tips for Effective Staging: How to Stage Your Home to Sell

After you've fixed up your home for listing, be sure to set the stage to get your property sold.

If you want buyers to make an offer on your house, you need to impress them with what your house has to offer. The best way to do this is through staging. The right kind of staging can make your home look bigger, cleaner and more desirable, which means you could get not one offer, but multiple offers.

Plan on two to three weekends to get your home staged properly. Cramming it all in one weekend won’t give you enough time to really focus on making your home shine.

Clean First

You can’t stage your home if it’s messy. Spend one day over the weekend deep cleaning your home. That includes the baseboards, ceilings, and even cleaning off the light switch covers. Clean carpets, polish floors and don’t forget the light fixtures too. If you don’t have the time, hire a cleaning crew to come in and scour the place for you.

Reduce the Furniture

When you’re living in your home, you use your furniture to make life easier. But, when you stage a home, you need to consider square footage and how much your furniture is eating up. The smaller your home looks, the less valuable it is to a buyer. Use furniture that is appropriate for the room’s size and remove one or two pieces of furniture per room to open up the space. That might mean putting a bookshelf in storage or removing an extra sitting chair.  If you have a dining area, scale down the size of the table to add square footage there too.

Arrange Furniture Accordingly

Once you know what furniture you’ll be working with, the next step is arranging that furniture to complement the room. Create focal points in each room, starting with the wall furthest from the entry. In the bedroom, for example, the bed should be the focal point, while in the living room it could be a fireplace or couch.

Add Splashes of Color

A fresh coat of paint not only makes your house smell fresh and clean, but can add a little pop to each room. Repaint all of the walls with neutral colors, but don’t be afraid to add color using accents. Sometimes all it takes is a brightly colored vase, accent pillow or even a throw to add character. Use high-wattage bulbs in your light fixtures to give every space a brighter appearance — which will also give the illusion of more space.

Set It Up

If you have seen a few model homes, you know that they are staged and setup as if someone lives there. The dining table is set for dinner guests, the bathroom has candles and the living room has a chess set and ready for a game. Put all personal items away, but don’t be afraid to setup the space as if you’re welcoming a guest.

Lastly, make your home smell great. Put a small amount of a quality vanilla extract in an oven-safe mug, place it in the oven on the lowest temperature setting, and your home will have a fresh, inviting scent.

Top image credit: Siemasko + Verbridge