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Monday, May 15, 2017

The Keys to Staging Your Home While Still Living in It

Staging your home for the market involves depersonalizing, decluttering, neutralizing, and three other key points to remember.

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If you need to stage your home to prepare it for the market while you’re still living in it, there are four main points you need to remember to maximize its value. First, you need to depersonalize, declutter, and neutralize. These three things are at the core of what it means to stage and get your house ready. The reason why you depersonalize and take down family portraits, kids’ trophies and other personal items is that we want the person who walks into your home to envision themselves living there. Your home is a place where you have created memories, but when the time comes to sell we need the buyer to be able to make that same connection and feel like it is a place where they will make their own family memories. When you declutter and neutralize, you’re making sure you’re not distracting buyers with bold colors or too many things in your house so they can focus on the things that make your house great. Second, work to make sure each room has a purpose. Oftentimes there are rooms in a house that are sparsely used or used for a purpose the average buyer is unlikely to copy. For example, many homeowners use their formal living room as a kids’ play room. Think about repurposing this room as a 2nd living area or an office – these are uses buyers are likely to see value in and can envision using it in a similar way. If you can show value in each room and present it as a place buyers can see themselves using we are likely to get a higher return on the square footage.
Depersonalizing, decluttering, and neutralizing are at the core of what it means to stage your house.
Third, remember throughout this process that the objective is to move. This means you’ll have to pack up and move your things. If you have too much furniture or other items that have collected over the years, box them up and take them away before marketing your home. It can be a good idea to rent a storage unit during the marketing period so you can hang on to your belongings while allowing your home to show its best.

Fourth, enlist some professional help. I’m preparing homes to go on the market every day but when it’s time to sell my home I will hire one of our professional stagers to walk through to give me an objective opinion and advice on how to present it best. Because we live in our homes we can become blind to some things that need attention. Stagers are experts in design. We know how we want our listings to look when everything's said and done, but they know how to get us there. A stager can give you a task list of things to do and give you practical advice on things like furniture placement and color choices. Appealing to the largest number of buyers is critical to getting your home sold for top dollar.  Professional staging is the first step toward making sure you’re ready to present your home to potential buyers.

If you have any questions about how to get your home ready for sale, don’t hesitate to give us a call. We’d love to hear from you.