At Heidi Ross Design, we help clients to understand how home staging has a lot of power in shaping how potential buyers perceive space within your home. When a buyer walks into a home crowded with personal effects, with the clutter of everyday life—like keys, shoes, and coats—spread around, they might feel that the space is small, dim, and not a place they can envision themselves living. But the same space with a light paint color, a few thoughtfully chosen accessories, and a careful paring down and clearing away of those everyday items can seem airy, bright, and inviting—and can let the potential buyer envision their own life being lived in the home.
Home staging is also a powerful tool to sell your home—but that doesn’t mean it’s a cure-all. Here, we’ll break down what home staging can’t do, and what is best to take care of or think through before trying to stage and sell your home.
1. Home staging cannot replace thorough cleaning.
When you’re trying to sell your home, one of the most important things you can do is ensure that every inch is spotlessly clean. Buyers want to see a space that looks well-cared for and new (or as close to new as possible) —and cat/dog fur or dust can make even the cleanest house look worn out. This is something that no amount of new paint or carefully selected décor can change.
Before staging, ensure that you get the home extremely clean, and keep this up while the home is being sold. Removing odors can be an important step, too—clean up any pet smell, and try light, refreshing, natural scents, or even an open window to help the potential buyer feel clean and clear.
2. Home staging cannot change location or make an unrealistic price tag possible.
While it seems self-evident, this is something big to keep in mind. Home staging can help to increase a home's value, but it can’t help you to achieve an unrealistic price for your home. A too-high price tag can scare buyers off—and a price that drops as the house sits on the market can continue to scare them away as well.
And the target market for your house depends on location. For example, trendy areas near nightlife might appeal to younger professionals—neighborhoods made up of young families in good school districts will attract a different potential buyer. Staging won’t be able to change someone’s mind if the area doesn’t meet their needs—but it can help you to appeal to your target market through design choices. Modern kitchen staging, with light walls and a bar area, might appeal to younger couples, while a traditional style with an eat-in kitchen area might appeal to an older or extended family.
3. Home staging cannot hide or disguise major flaws, and can’t replace necessary updates and repairs.
Home staging helps a buyer to see the best features of your home. Staging a small kitchen can help them to envision how the space could best be put to use, and staging a small house can help them envision how good features—like large windows or a beautiful fireplace—would make the home right for their family. But home staging is not meant to cover up, disguise, or hide major flaws—and it can’t make buyers forget about big deal-breaking issues like significant deferred maintenance or holes in walls.
Big issues—like problems with the wiring, roof, plumbing, or HVAC—need to be fixed before the home is listed or staged, or presented to the buyer as issues that are folded into the sale. The buyer who wants to take on home projects is different from the buyer who wants to move into a move-in home, and home staging won’t be able to make a buyer forget about dated rooms or major mechanical problems.
Before you get ready to sell, do your best to complete renovations and updates that are recommended by your professional stager. Paint, updated lighting, and new hardware can go a long way towards helping your potential buyer see your home’s best value, and doing larger-value renovations—like bathroom renovations, basement finishing, new flooring, or a new roof, if you expect these to be issues during the sale—can help you and your real estate agent/professional get your best sale terms.
Where can I find home staging near me?
At Heidi Ross Design, we help clients in Memphis, Germantown, Olive Branch, and the Greater Memphis area get their best terms when selling their luxury homes. Our expertise and experience mean we can help you throughout the process when you need the best in-person viewing and best virtual staging support. Want to learn more? Use our online form for a FREE quote, or give us a call at (901) 361-7419.
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