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Home Staging Advice

It is proven that homes that are clean, tidy, de-cluttered, and staged in the correct way achieve a much higher eventual sale price than homes that are not. First impressions to potential buyers are vital, so feel free to follow the advice below. The team at Merrick Binch are more than happy to visit your home and give you a personalised breakdown if required.

DIS-ASSOCIATE YOURSELF WITH YOUR HOME

  • Say to yourself, ‘This is not my home; it is a house — a product to be sold much like a box of cereal at the supermarket.’
  • Make the mental decision to ‘let go’ of your emotions and focus on the fact that soon this house will no longer be yours.
  • Picture yourself handing over the keys to the new owners.
  • Say goodbye to every room.
  • Don’t look backwards — look toward the future.

DE-PERSONALISE

Pack up those personal photographs and family heirlooms. Buyers find it difficult to see past personal artefacts, and you do not want them to be distracted.

You do not want to make any buyer ask themselves, ‘I wonder what kind of people live in this home?’ You want buyers to say, ‘I can see myself living here.’

DE-CLUTTER

People collect an amazing quantity of personal items. Consider this: if you haven’t used it in over a year, you probably don’t need it. If you don’t need it, why not donate it or throw it away?

  • Remove all books from bookcases.
  • Pack up those knickknacks.
  • Clean off everything on kitchen work surfaces.
  • Put essential items used daily in a small box that can be stored in storage when not in use.
  • Think of this process as a head-start on the packing you will eventually need to do anyway.

REARRANGE BEDROOM WARDROBES AND KITCHEN CABINETS

Buyers love to snoop and will open cupboard and cabinet doors. Think of the message it sends if items fall out. Now imagine what a buyer believes about you if they see everything organized. It says you probably take good care of the rest of the house as well. This means:

  • Neatly stack dishes.
  • Turn coffee cup handles facing the same way.
  • Hang shirts together, buttoned and facing the same direction.
  • Line up shoes.

RENT A STORAGE UNIT AND REMOVE BULKY FURNITURE

Almost every home shows better with less furniture. Remove pieces of furniture that block or hamper paths and walkways and put them in storage. Since your bookcases are now empty, store them. Leave just enough furniture in each room to showcase the room’s purpose and plenty of room to move around. You do not want buyers scratching their heads and saying, ‘What is this room used for?’

REMOVE / REPLACE FAVOURITE ITEMS

If you want to take window coverings, built-in appliances or fixtures with you, remove them now. If the chandelier in the dining room once belonged to your great grandmother, take it down. If a buyer never sees it, they will not want it. Once you tell a buyer they cannot have an item, they will covet it, and it could blow your deal. Pack those items and replace them, if necessary.

MAKE MINOR REPAIRS

  • Replace cracked floor or counter tiles.
  • Patch holes in walls.
  • Fix leaky taps.
  • Fix doors that don’t close properly and kitchen drawers that jam.
  • Consider painting your walls neutral colours, especially if you have grown accustomed to purple or pink walls.
    (Don’t give buyers any reason to remember your home as “the house with the orange bathroom.”)
  • Replace burned-out light bulbs.
  • If you’ve considered replacing a worn bedspread, do so now.

MAKE THE HOUSE SPARKLE

  • Wash windows inside and out.
  • Rent a pressure washer and spray down pavements and exterior.
  • Clean out cobwebs.
  • Re-caulk baths, showers and sinks.
  • Polish chrome taps and mirrors.
  • Clean out the refrigerator.
  • Vacuum daily.
  • Wax floors.
  • Dust furniture, ceiling fan blades and light fixtures.
  • Bleach dingy grout.
  • Replace worn rugs.
  • Hang up fresh towels.
  • Clean and air out any musty smelling areas. Odours are a no-no.

SCRUTINIZE

  • Go outside and open your front door. Stand there. Do you want to go inside? Does the house welcome you?
  • Linger in the doorway of every single room and imagine how your house will look to a buyer.
  • Examine carefully how furniture is arranged and move pieces around until it makes sense.
  • Make sure blinds and curtains hang level.
  • Tune in to the room’s statement and its emotional pull. Does it have impact and pizzazz?

CHECK CURB APPEAL

If buyers will not get out of their car because they do not like the exterior of your home, you’ll never get them inside. Therefore:

  • Keep the pavements clear of weeds
  • Mow the lawn.
  • Paint or replace the front door.
  • Trim your hedges and weed borders.
  • Make sure your house number is visible.