Staging serves a great purpose. To sell your home at its maximum price, you must make it as appealing as possible to the buyers you want to impress. That’s exactly what staging does!
As I update this article in 2021, many sellers, perhaps most, are fully vacating the home and garage and hire a professional staging company to put in furniture and accessories. With the pandemic raging, low inventory, and intense buyer demand, it can be very difficult to live in the property while trying to sell it. It is likely healthier for you to be out of the house, too, during a time with a lot of visitors.
Professional stagers will advise you, once you’ve hired them, on some fixes that they deem will provide you a good return on investment.
Moving out, cleaning, professionally staging are usually the best path forward and this approach will normally maximize the sale price and net to the sellers.
Sometimes, though, that’s not feasible. We listing agents can also advise on pre-sale improvements, furniture placement, and so on.
The following are just a few of the many ideas I will review with you as your agent. We will look at your home through a buyer’s eyes; you will learn to assess your own home as if you had never seen it before, and together we will increase the perceived value of your home.
As someone with training in staging, I can help you to set the priorities on what to do to make your home sell for top dollar without overdoing it. A simple rule of thumb is to declutter, clean ’til it shines, and do as much as you can to make floors, walls and doors sparkle as well as the most important kitchen and baths.
Homebuyers in Silicon Valley pay a lot of attention to “light, bright and airy” and decluttering and cleaning go a long way in making a very favorable impression on them. This is the most important part of staging a home to sell.
These large projects may cost you a bit of money, but some may be well worth the expense. I will help you decide which of these improvements will add value to your home, and which are not necessary.
- Painting—exterior and/or interior.
- Improving lawn and landscaping.
- Cleaning and repairing windows and screens.
- Cleaning and/or replacing carpets. (One Realtor said at an educational seminar I attended, “Carpets don’t wear out, they ugly out”.)
- Touching up or refinishing cabinets.
- Storing or disposing of furniture in order to make rooms appear larger.
- Cleaning drapes.
- Cleaning and repairing all appliances.
These smaller tasks won’t require much if any expense other than your time, but attention to these details will certainly help improve the value of your home.
Throughout your home:
- Remove all unnecessary objects from furniture (throw blankets, for instance, or stuffed animals on couches).
- Keep decorative objects to a minimum, including personal photos.
- Replace burned-out light bulbs.
- Put away children’s toys.
- Keep pets under control at all times.
- Leave on key lights during the day. During showings, turn on all lights and lamps.
- Have your stereo on during the day playing some soft music for all showings.
- Set your dining table for guests.
- Place fresh logs/pinecones in fireplace.
- Place fresh flowers in living room and master bedroom.
- Fill paper towel, toilet paper and tissue holders.
In your kitchen:
- Clear all unnecessary objects from countertops, including knife blocks.
- Empty cabinets of clutter to make them look more spacious.
- Clear the refrigerator doors of messages, pictures, etc.
- Clean the oven, wax the floor, make sure the sink is clean, replace counter tile or grout if necessary.
In your bathrooms:
- Remove any unnecessary items from countertops, tubs, and shower stalls (keep necessary items in one small group on the counter).
- Check the caulking, tile, and grout around tubs and showers.
- Replace or clean shower curtain.
- Fix leaking faucets.
- Coordinating towels are a nice touch.
In your bedrooms:
- Check your closets: be sure lights work and clothes are neatly hung.
- Store shoes or other loose items in boxes, neatly arranged on shelves.
Outside your home
- Replace door mats.
- Tour the perimeter of the house and move all garbage cans, discarded wood scraps, extra building materials, etc. into the garbage.
- Check gutter and/or roof for dry rot. Make sure gutters are free of debris.
- Inspect all plants, prune bushes and trees. Keep plants from blocking windows. Remove any dead plants or shrubs.
- Weed all planting areas. Keep your lawn freshly cut and fertilized.
We will make sure your home looks its best! Attending to all the details that make potential buyers feel welcomed and pleased to be in your home will significantly enhance your ability to generate full-price offers in a short amount of time.
If you would like to see some inspiring “before and after” pictures, see the Sellers Links section to the left and click on the URLs for staging. You will be impressed!
Lastly, in our valley there may be staging issues that may raise a feng shui or vastu concern. Home buyers in San Jose care about things like “T Intersections”, the need to drive by a cemetery to reach the property, or even the house number on the home. Sometimes these things can’t be fixed. But often there are simple remedies to make a home more appealing to a wider audience here in Silicon Valley, and I will work with you should this be an issue. (Also see links on this topic to the left in the Sellers Links section.)