If you’re planning to put your home up for sale, chances are you’ve considered staging it to generate more value. After all, the most experienced real estate agents will vouch that staging increases the dollar value offered for any home on sale.
But everyone knows that home staging can be expensive, what with having to hire an expensive professional stager/decorator and having to pay for all the changes, repairs, replacements, and beautification. But does home staging have to be too expensive to consider? Is it possible that you might actually be able to add that value yourself?
Of course! Home staging can easily be a DIY project and a fun one at that. In fact, we’ve put together some expert tips to help you highlight those assets of your home, get it into top shape, and impress buyers into writing those enticing offers right away, all by yourself.
1. Make a great first impression with the curb appeal
First impressions go a long way – despite what they say, everyone judges a book by its cover. The great thing is you don’t really need to spend too much in terms of dollars to gain that precious curb appeal. Even a weekend of DIY will do.
Start by cleaning the front. Rent out a pressure washer to get rid of dirt and grime from the sidings, windows, door, and cornices. If it looks too dull and old, paint the main door in a bright, attractive color that complements the rest of the façade.
It might also be worth it finally getting down to mow the lawn and prune the hedges. If your home’s front doesn’t already incorporate some green, get a few pots of flowering plants to make it more inviting. Clean up the sidewalk leading up to your house and replace old doormats with new ones.
2. Add scale with the right kind of furniture
Furnishing is considered one of the most crucial aspects of staging a home, and for a good reason – it can increase or decrease its perceived value significantly. Without furniture, spaces can feel cold and uninviting. Plus, rooms can look smaller without the scale furniture adds to them. That’s why even though the sale value of the home doesn’t usually include furniture, it’s still a good idea to spend some money to stage the house with it.
Make sure you have the right size of furniture, though. Furniture that’s too big will make your spaces appear smaller, while furniture that’s too small will look awkward and uninviting. If you’re renting furniture, make sure it’s in good condition and that it complements the style of your home.
While furnishing is essential, it’s also important to draw the line on how much, for there sure is a thing like too-much-furniture. Clutter has its own way of repelling buyers.
Plus, while it’s a great idea to add personality to your spaces, it’s crucial you keep them impersonal too. After all, buyers do need to be able to imagine themselves fitting into your home if they are to buy it, right?
3. Organize open plans to help buyers visualize the possibilities
Staging can be especially important in open-plan houses to help buyers visualize how they could use the spaces. Add definition with area rugs, furniture arrangement, and partition walls and room dividers. Use them to demarcate the open plan into different zones and to mark movement paths. This way, you can make your home look organized without taking away from the open and airy feel.
DIY partitions like this Partition Room Divider or this Refined Industrial Room Divider can be especially useful here. Set it up in a jiffy to divide a dining area from the living, isolate a work-from-home corner, or even create private nooks to show buyers the potential of your home. When the sale is through, you can simply dismantle the partition without damaging the existing walls or flooring, and reuse it elsewhere.
4. Give purpose to those awkward spaces
Staging a home isn’t just about highlighting its strengths, it’s also about downplaying its weaknesses. The truth is, every home comes with some design flaws – whether it’s a glaring awkward corner, a weird projection or alcove, or some overlooked and impractical planning.
It might be a good idea to treat those awkward spaces and assign them a function and definition. For example, stage that weird nook in the living room as a reading nook with a book rack, a comfy armchair, and some cozy lighting. If your entrance door opens awkwardly and right into the middle of your living room, place a stylish room divider in the way to manage the traffic flow and create a graceful transition.
5. Add some newness to the walls and floor
Dull, boring, shabby walls can instantly put off buyers, making them think your home’s value is lower than it should be. Why let that happen when all you might need to do is add a coat of paint? If painting seems like a daunting task, just go for peel-and-stick wallpapers instead. They allow you to add that freshness and brightness to your home within just a couple of hours and without any mess.
The same goes for the flooring too. If the existing floor looks too ragged and worn out, give it a quick, easy, and inexpensive makeover with peel-and-stick vinyl tiles or plank flooring. You’ll be amazed by the difference flooring can make to how big and bright any space appears!
Keep in mind that your color selection matters too. Go with warm or neutral colors that are inviting instead of stark, in-your-face ones that draw too much attention. While you may like that bright green or orange, your buyers may have a very different opinion about it. It’s always wiser to play it safe.
6. Upgrade bathroom and kitchen fixtures
Leaky faucets are the best way to bring down the value of a home by revealing its age, sometimes even adding years it doesn’t deserve! But remember, sales are all about perception. Even if it costs a few hundred dollars, it’s definitely worth investing in getting repairs done and changing old, broken fixtures.
If your bathroom is old, re-grout the flooring, re-glaze the tiles and replace the sanitary fittings. In the kitchen, add a coat of fresh paint to the cabinet fronts to make them look new.
7. Add an extra room within the existing square footage
Generally, the higher the number of rooms in a home, the higher its value. If your home has fewer rooms than you think it could for its square footage, adding an extra functional room might be an excellent way to bring up the value. You could divide a large room into two, convert a den into a proper room, or even split a large living room to make a spare room. In high-density areas, this addition can especially make that positive difference in the buyer offers.
But if you’re wondering how any of this sounds like a DIY tip, it’s because you haven’t considered a modular DIY partition wall like this L-shaped or U-shaped Partition yet. Yes, you can build them up yourself in just a couple of hours without any expertise! And they do look pretty neat, just like actual walls –don’t they?
It’s always a good idea to check with the building laws in your locality before you add that extra room, though - renovation laws can be quite tricky to deal with in some areas.
Another uncomplicated way to approach this instead might be to use the temporary walls simply as a staging element to show your buyers how they could add that extra room in the future. The possibility of that extra room itself could get buyers interested in your property.
8. Make sure your home’s well-lit
Lighting can make or break your home staging game, period. Any efforts you make at staging your home won’t shine, quite literally, without adequate lighting. Poorly lit rooms can also look small, dull, and depressing.
Natural lighting is an asset to any home, so make sure you maximize it. Get rid of heavy drapes and let the light in. Place large mirrors as décor elements to increase natural light and make your spaces appear larger and cheerier.
While you’re relying on natural light, don’t forget to pay attention to the lighting fixtures too! Dust down the existing fixtures and replace old, broken ones. A few lamps, sconces, and pendant lights can also add charm and create that alluring ambiance your buyers just won’t be able to resist.
9. Attract the sense of smell, too
While we’re mostly focused on aesthetics, it’s a wise idea to also aim for the other senses to tempt buyers! Smells can sell. In fact, they can be so subtle yet powerful that buyers may not even realize that they’re picking your property over other equally attractive options simply because they like the smell of your home.
Fresh and clean is the way to go when it comes to making the most of the olfactory advantage in your showings. The simplest way is to place a bowl of zesty lemons on the kitchen counter and run a slice over the kitchen sink to infuse that fresh citrus note into the air.
10. Show how the spaces can be flexible
Who doesn’t like flexibility? If your home has those malleable spaces that have the potential for multiple functions, don’t shy from showing them off to your buyers! For example, show them how they can use the space below the staircase as a delightful home office. You can also use portable dividers to demonstrate how they can convert a part of their living room into a temporary guest room, home gym, or a hobby-room.
Get your home the value it deserves and more!
Staging your home doesn’t have to be complicated, difficult, or expensive. Even without hiring professionals, investing just a weekend’s worth of DIY and a couple of thousand dollars can go a long way in increasing your home’s sale value by significant margins. It’s really all about enhancing those assets and fixing or downplaying the drawbacks. The better its perception, the higher the offers that’ll come rolling in!
If you’re looking for temporary DIY partition walls and room dividers to help you stage your home better, don’t hesitate to reach out to us! Our space design experts will not just help you with the right products but also give you valuable suggestions on how to best use them for successful home staging.