Selling your home is a daunting experience for most people, let alone for those of us whom have owned our homes for decades. Every nook and cranny holds memories, mementos, and keepsakes that mean the world to the owner of the home and well, to be blunt – nothing to the prospective home buyers. One’s treasures can be seen as clutter, or make the house seem small. Staging your home can be the solution. It allows for us to step back, and look at our homes as a buyer would. If you don’t know where to start, these three simple ideas can get you well on your way.

Organize, Organize, Organize

Your closets need to be cleaned out and organized before selling your home. Prospective buyers are going to open those doors and want to see a good amount of space not necessarily your shoe addiction! Don’t try to stuff away things to hide them – this just makes the space seem cramped. A good investment can be to purchase large plastic bins and neatly store excess items in the garage or the basement, freeing up the closet and allowing its actual size and usefulness to be seen and appreciated. Group your items by style, dresses with dresses, shirts with shirts, pants together etc. You wouldn’t think a closet could make or break the sale of a house, but it can. Many people have “Storage” as one of the top five things they look for in a home. Helping them see that your home checks one of those boxes is sure to be a positive. 

It’s time to break up with your house. De-Clutter - Depersonalize

Even though all the personal items in your house are meaningful to you, they do not help you sell your home. New buyers want to buy into a lifestyle, not your life. As harsh as it seems they don’t want to see pictures of the kids or you water-skiing in Hawaii – they want to see themselves in the house, see what their life will be like. Taking down personal photos, and knickknacks will allow the house to shine and make it feel less cluttered. Think of hotel rooms – they can still be so warm and inviting, yet there is nothing in them that speaks directly to you. It is the way it makes you feel.  Removing excess furniture or creating a more useable space is a great asset. Instead of that third bedroom just being another guest bed – you can easily transform it into a home office or creative space to show the potential buyer what other uses that room may be suitable for. You and your home need to move into a new relationship. As hard as these steps can feel, in the long run they help you get ready for your big move, making it easier for you to move on because you have already gotten rid of all the old excess baggage.

This May Be A Job for The Professionals

If you’re like so many people whom have a hard time envisioning a space with a new look or new use, you may find it helpful to hire a professional Staging Expert. Some people look at it as too expensive an option – but it’s not nearly as much as your first price reduction. The purpose of home staging is simple—to get the property sold! The goal is to make each property as appealing and welcoming as possible… so that it sells rapidly and for the maximum price possible. Doing this successfully, however,  can require a unique skill set that combines an eye for design, style, home décor, and real estate and if that doesn’t describe you – these folks are here to help.
The lower mainland has a wide array of organizations and consultants to choose from whom are trained and accredited.  They will help you make less emotional decisions and better business ones. They will often whisk away some of your furniture and your home will look all the bigger for it. Often they will also use your existing furnishings in new and cleaver ways to re-purpose the space to make it look magazine worthy. All should be able to offer you base quotes and give you a run-down of their plans prior to you committing. Good Stagers can actually increase the value of your home, making the service one that pays for itself. It is an option I myself have advised my clients to use because it works. Here are a couple of well-respected Staging Company Web-sites to help you get a better understanding of the process.

Ready Set Show:
The Staging Goddess:

Selling and moving from a home will never be anyone’s favorite pastime, but taking a few extra steps prior to knocking in that ‘For Sale’ sign can certainly make things go easier.  If those steps result into a quicker more profitable sale – I say that is well worth the time and investment. Whether you choose to do it yourself or bring in a Pro – Staging has proven itself as a top selling tool.