10 Tips for Staging Your Home on a Budget
Staging your home can be an effective way to sell faster. Staging usually involves carefully arranged furniture, accessories, and arrangements that will best allow for buyers to picture themselves living in the home. A staged home should not feel too lived-in; all personal belongings should be cleared out and packed away. You do not want buyers seeing your home as messy or cluttered, as it will detract from their ability to envision themselves living in your home. Staging your home can be expensive and time consuming—but it does not have to be. Below, we have listed ten tips for staging your home on a budget.
- Declutter. This may be the most obvious tip on the list, but it is by far the most important. As noted above, you want buyers to be able to envision themselves living in your home. This is difficult to do with tons of personal belongings everywhere, including family photos. Try to create as much space in your home as possible—you want visitors to flow from one room to the next. You will even want to create space in your closet, an often overlooked part of the home where you may be trying to hide some of your moving boxes.
- Use slipcovers on old furniture. Nothing dampens the mood like dull, overused furniture. To create the illusion of a clean, neat, and tidy space, use slipcovers on the couch and even chairs to tie the room together. Your furniture will look pristine and coordinated—even if underneath it has seen better days.
- Add vertical lines in rooms with low ceilings. To make low-ceiling rooms look more spacious and open, decorate using long plants or branches. Alternatively, consider using draperies to create a similar effect. If your furniture is oversized in smaller rooms, consider trying to downsize or clear out most furniture altogether to create the illusion of more space.
- Buy a bed-in-a-bag. Stores like Target sell cheap complete bedding sets which can be useful in making bedrooms look more coordinated and refreshed. Make sure you pick a color or pattern that does not clash with any other features of the room, or you will be once again distracting and potentially turning off potential buyers.
- Update the bathroom. Simple upgrades you may want to make are new knobs, handles, and faucets, all of which can be replaced on a budget. Complete the look with a new cloth shower curtain. And remember to make sure the bathroom is CLEAN—overlooked issues like dirty grout is a major turn-off for buyers.
- Use only high-watt lightbulbs. Amplify the lighting by making sure all your lightbulbs are the highest wattage possible, leaving no room too dim. If you make sure to buy efficient lightbulbs such as LED bulbs, the lightbulb will last even longer and be energy efficient while it brightens your home.
- Open up or remove curtains. This goes along with tip #6, to brighten up spaces in your home, always leave the curtains or blinds open. In some rooms, particularly with sun-facing windows, you may want to consider forgoing curtains altogether. Sure, buyers are likely to put up curtains or blinds on all the windows anyway, but this is a matter of appearance over functionality.
- Borrow furniture from family or friends. Once you’ve decluttered your home and moved some of your furniture, you may find your home is lacking. You may need a small table or a replacement for that worn, floral loveseat that only you seem to love. It is a smart idea to ask family and friends if they have any furniture pieces you might be able to borrow for your home, until it sells. Another option is to scour local yard sales for cheap pieces to showcase. This method is much cheaper than renting furniture or buying brand new pieces.
- Try “soft” staging. Soft staging has the same concept as traditional staging, but without the furniture. Instead, soft staging focuses on bringing in artwork and accessories to accent the different rooms of a home. This is a great alternative to fully staging your home, as it can create moods throughout the home without letting it look too empty and sterile. Soft staging also tends to be more budget-friendly, for obvious reasons. It also makes the moving-out process much easier once the home sells.
- Add splashes of color. In the bathroom, add colorful hand towels. In the kitchen, place a vase of red flowers. Bold colors pop in an otherwise neutral space, and helps make photographs of different rooms seem more diverse and appealing. While you probably hear “neutral, neutral, neutral” about walls, furniture, and everything else while selling your home, a little color is nothing to be afraid of. You can even use these final touches to showcase a little of your own personality.
Staging your home can be a difficult process, so it is always good to look to advice from your realtor. He or she will be able to help you make important choices in furniture and placement. If you are currently interested in selling your home, but are not sure where to start, contact RealtyWorks at (802) 438-2131. RealtyWorks is a full-service realty office that can help you sell your home for the right price. Visit www.realtyworksvt.com for more information.