The Details That Make a Difference When Staging Your Home

Photo of a Classic Cottages home; Staged by Red House Staging, 2020

There’s no getting around it: Selling a house is stressful. Every step in the process comes with its own special nuances and stressors.

The stage in which prospective buyers come into your home and judge it can be especially trying. But staging your home doesn’t have to be a nightmare! So sit back, relax, and take a look at the details that make a difference when staging your Washington D.C home. These simple projects will also boost your home’s value.

Start Outside and Work Your Way In

A well-staged home sells faster and for a higher price, according to the National Association of Realtors. The goal of staging is to create a property that visitors can see themselves buying. The exterior of your home and the landscaping surrounding it creates the first impression. And it’s the perfect place to focus your efforts.

Visit some neighboring properties as well as some of the best-landscaped homes in the area. While luxury landscaping can certainly catch the eye of a potential buyer, adding these elements last minute is risky. Instead, work with what you have. A few hours, some elbow grease, and a few cans of paint can work wonders on fencing and entryways.

Power-wash the front walk and driveway. Mow a pattern on your lawn and edge. Prune the shrubs and mulch the flower beds. Hiring a professional DC landscaper for a one-time makeover is another great way to give what you’ve got a boost without breaking the bank.

Use a Stager’s Fresh Eyes

Invite a professional stager to your home – someone who hasn’t visited before. Have them take a look around the property and tell you anything and everything that sticks out. Unlike you, who sees your home every day, a home staging consultant will see your house as a potential buyer. They’ll notice sticking doors, chipping paint, and cluttered corners you’ve become blind to. A professional stager can also let you know about any unpleasant smells you and your family might be immune to.

A project manager with Red House Staging & Interiors may end up saving you money in the long run. He or she will offer suggestions for making those small improvements that could net you a huge profit. Just be sure to swallow your pride before the walkthrough. The staging consultant is pointing out flaws as a favor — not to hurt your feelings! If you like their ideas, you may benefit from a small or larger staging package.

Limit the Personal Touches

You want to make every space in your house feel as universally appealing as possible. This means removing the things that make it personally appealing. Family pictures, evocative artwork, and bold color choices keep potential buyers from picturing your space as their own. This can make them feel like they don’t belong. It can definitely stop them from making an offer.

Little Fixes Go a Long Way

If you’ve got handyman skills, it’s time to use them. One of the best things you can do before inviting potential buyers into your home is to fix all the little things you can. Sticking doors, dead doorbells, missing address numbers — all of these can make a bad impression, but none is hard or expensive to fix.

Pay attention to little fixes in areas that are heavily scrutinized. Bathrooms, kitchens, and entranceways are places where buyers’ eyes are extra keen. Stop leaky faucets. Clear slow drains. Remove dust from ceiling fans and vents. Replace all burned-out lightbulbs. One small detail can make the difference between three weeks and 30 weeks on the market!

Elizabeth Early is a former real estate agent turned freelance writer. She keeps a hand in the market by staging homes.