Once we decided we were ready to sell our house to pay off debt, the first thing we did was search for affordable staging tips so we could get the whole thing over and done with as quickly as possible!
Once you have been through the whole process of selling your home, you will understand why, in every possible way, you will want it to sell as quickly as possible!
Once you list your home, it immediately becomes “no longer yours”. You are now living in a museum version of your home, which can be extremely difficult to uphold, especially when you have children!
These staging tips are not only suitable to most budgets, but will give you the biggest bang for your buck when the offers start rolling in!
You can pick and choose as these tips suit your home, but this was what we did and we sold on our second showing!
8 Affordable Staging Tips To Sell Your House Fast
This is always a common suggestion, and as simple as it can be, it truly makes a world of difference! A fresh coat of paint on the walls makes the house feel new again.
Keep it neutral if possible (you don’t want someone to not put in an offer because they simply can’t see past your lime green bathroom!), but even a fresh coat of the same color can clean up a room, covering scuffs and scrapes you may not even notice anymore since you are used to them!
If you are on a really tight budget/time constraint, just focusing on the key rooms in the house (kitchen, living room, bathrooms) can make a world of difference!
Never knowing what time of day buyers could want to visit your home, you need to make sure it will show just as well at night/on a cloudy day as it would when the sun is shining bright!
Make sure that you change any bulbs that may be burnt out, and replace any light fixtures that are “past their prime”, and look it!
This doesn’t need to be a pricey venture, IKEA carries a wide variety of light fixtures that are affordable and simple to suit a variety of tastes!
This is probably the biggest step in preparing to show your home, and I know for us it was certainly the most time consuming. We never thought of ourselves as “pack rats” or having a cluttered home, but when it comes to “home staging standards”, we probably could have qualified to be on an episode of hoarders!
When you are staging your home for sale, you need to get rid of everything!
Remove anything personal (diplomas, photographs, etc.) as well as any trinkets, unnecessary decor, even the clothes you are not currently wearing (we packed up all our winter clothes–freeing up at least 25% of your closet gives the illusion of space!).
Not only do you want to make it easy for buyers to picture their stuff in your house without having to look past yours, but you want to make sure you avoid any judgments they may make of you before negotiations happen (ie. “He’s a doctor? I’m sure he makes great money already, so let’s offer low” or “I don’t want to live in a house someone who is part of “XYZ Organization” lived in!”)
If you find you have a lot and are not wanting to donate some of the items, ask a friend or family member if they would be willing to let you store a few boxes in their garage until you sell your home.
This is another step that ideally would be updated throughout your home, but focusing on the key rooms will still make a tremendous impact.
If you are good with a sewing machine (or know someone who is) you can replace current curtains with simple cotton or linen drapes (again, light/neutral colors) for the simple cost of fabric. If you can’t make them, and are unable to find something within your price range, consider removing curtains completely from the windows.
The main idea is to let in as much light as possible which can give the illusion of a bigger space, so either remove them, or put up light colored curtains to maximize this “illusion”.
*NOTE* Even if you have light colored/sheer curtains, always make sure they are tied back during showings!
An old bathroom can feel dirty, and a dirty bathroom is not somewhere you can picture yourself living, so bathrooms need to be bright, fresh, and spotless!
Again, replacing some key elements can make a world of difference, but this doesn’t mean completely renovating the room (you will more than likely not get your money back if you try to completely renovate before selling).
A fresh coat of paint, and new shower curtain/towels can make a world of difference. If you have a tile floor and the grout has discolored over time, try this grout paint/sealer. We used it on our bathroom tiles and it made the whole room look new again!
Beyond these changes, simply making sure that cabinets and under the sink are clean and organized(yes…buyers will go through EVERYTHING!), and that the counter, sink, toilet, and tub are all kept clean will do the trick!
The outside of your home is the first impression you make on a buyer, many times before they have even decided to come for a showing.
Curb appeal can be a “make or break” for your home, so ensure overgrown trees and bushes are trimmed back, and “framing” your home instead of taking over!
Flowers can add some nice color as well, and of course keep your grass cut. A well cared for garden shows pride of ownership, telling the buyers that “we take good care of our home, inside and out”.
Don’t forget the backyard when it comes to external care either! Again, making sure gardens and the lawn are well cared for is big, and be sure to have a careful look at any structures you may have (decks, swing sets, pools, etc) and ensure they are looking the best they can.
Even taking a pressure washer to your deck can bring old wood back to life!
A big thing many buyers notice, but most sellers don’t, is the entrance to your home. Ensure that your front door is clean, and the paint isn’t chipped or cracked in any way.
Replacing old hardware can help make a great impact up front as well!
If you don’t have money in the budget to do this, removing and spray painting any brass handles/doorknobs/hinges with this bronze spray paint we used can really help update a dated look for a fraction of the cost of buying new ones!
Now that you removed all of your personal effects, time to replace them all with mirrors! Everywhere!
Just kidding, but strategically placed mirrors are great for making small rooms look bigger, and dark rooms look brighter!
No need to break the bank on this one either, we got some great door length mirrors at Canadian Tire for $5 each, and have actually gotten pretty lucky at thrift stores for mirrors as well (no one wants to throw one away and get pinned with 7 years bad luck when it gets broken I guess!)
If you manage to get all of this done and still have some energy left, call a few realtors!
Have at least 3 realtors in your area walk through your home and give you some tips on what they like, and what they don’t. This not only will give you a variety of last minute advice before you list, but help you decide who you would like to list with!
Have some more tips to help sell your home fast? Share them below!
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