Are you getting ready to put your house on the market? If so, you’ve likely heard that staging can have a HUGE impact when it comes to selling. But be careful, some common staging mistakes could actually hurt your chances of quickly and easily finding a buyer.
To avoid falling into this trap, here are nine of the most common staging missteps to look out for:
1. Angling Furniture
Arranging furniture at an angle might seem stylish… but it won’t help potential buyers see how their own furniture will fit in the room!
When it comes to staging your home in preparation to sell, arranging furniture at an angle is a BIG mistake. Instead of taking in your home’s aesthetic, buyers will be trying to figure out why that chair is sitting “over there” instead of in its natural spot against the wall.
And let's not forget the ergonomics of it all. When furniture is set at an angle, it just doesn't look and feel right. People don't like to sit at weird angles when they're trying to relax — even if they can't put their finger on why! So keep your furniture straight and symmetrical for a comfortable space that attracts buyers.
Not only does slanted furniture throw off the visual balance of a room, but it also makes rooms feel much smaller than they really are. When you arrange everything in a linear fashion, all sides of the room are exposed and this creates an illusion of spaciousness. Buyers want to be able to imagine themselves living in your home; if they can barely fit their furniture in it, that won't be the case.
2. Skimping on Natural Light
It's time for you to tap into the limitless power of natural light! Natural lighting can be deceivingly powerful – it has the ability to completely change the ambience of a space. Don't block windows or skylights with furniture – you want lots of bright light streaming through your rooms. Plus, having open window coverings allows potential buyers to peek outside and see what kind of view they have access to - what's not to love about that?!
Make sure you’re taking advantage of natural light by using your windows and skylights to your advantage to create an inviting atmosphere that will have buyers flocking. So go ahead – open those window coverings, let the sunshine in, and watch potential customers fall in love with your home!
3. Forgetting Your Buyer
When it comes to staging a home, it’s important to consider who your potential buyer might be. Will they be an older couple looking for a peaceful retirement spot? A young family searching for the perfect starter home? You want them to walk through and imagine themselves living in the space - so, you’ll need to stage accordingly!
Here are some fun tips: If you’re selling to an older couple, think of ways that you can make your house look cozy and inviting. Invest in a comfy blanket or throw pillows for the couch.
On the other hand, if you’re selling to a young family, make sure your home looks kid-friendly. Put out some toys and books in the playroom, hang up brightly colored artwork or wall displays that kids would enjoy looking at. And don’t forget to set out some snacks — nothing makes a house feel homier than having snacks nearby!
At the end of the day, you want potential buyers to be able to envision themselves living in your home - so keep that in mind when staging your house. It may take some extra effort but it will pay off when people walk through and see themselves already living there!
4. Not Staging For the Camera
When staging for photos, look at every room from all angles to make sure it looks amazing from any viewpoint – because this is what buyers will see online first!
Angling furniture (for photographs) can make a huge difference with how it appears online.
Hold on… Patrik, you JUST told us to be cautious in angling furniture…
Good catch! You’re absolutely right! However, Thomas and I suggest angling furniture specifically for your listing photos to get folks interested in touring. THEN, square off furniture for in-person tours.
Specifically for photos, try moving pieces around and experimenting with different positions – you’ll be surprised at what a difference this makes in the final image. If you need some inspiration, check out design blogs and magazines to help give you ideas.
Finally, a neat and organized home is necessary for photos that stand out. Declutter your space before the photographer arrives and organize all of your belongings in an aesthetically pleasing way. Try to maintain this level of cleanliness throughout the entire selling process, too – potential buyers are sure to appreciate a tidy home!
At the end of the day, staging a house for photographs is not difficult – but it does take time and effort. With these tips in mind, you’ll be able to create beautiful photos that will give potential buyers an outstanding first impression.
5. Depersonalizing Too Much… or Not Enough!
Depersonalization is great… but there’s such a thing as too much of a good thing. If there are no personal touches at all, it can make a room look sterile and uninviting. So find a happy balance between removing your own personal items and adding warm touches that will welcome buyers in.
You want potential buyers to be able to envision themselves living in the space — how many times have we said that in this blog 🤔 — and that’s hard if every room is filled with reminders of you! But don't go overboard — remember, you still want your home to feel like a home. Keep accessories and artwork that reflect the style of the house, but find subtle ways to make it look less like "your" place. Try replacing family photos with some greenery or an interesting abstract piece. Replace your comfy couch with something sleek and modern, but still cozy enough for visitors to sit on.
A well-staged home can make a huge difference when you’re putting it on the market. You don't want buyers to remember your house because of the cat-themed carpet or your collection of ancient grandma knick-knacks - depersonalize, but not too much! A good balance between softly inviting and sterilely neutral is the key to success.
6. Relying on Trends
Try to avoid combining too many trendy pieces when staging your home. When it comes to preparing your home for sale, there's nothing worse than investing a lot of time and energy into staging pieces that will look dated the moment they hit the market. Sure, trends can come and go quickly, but you don’t want prospective buyers walking away from your house with a feeling of ‘this isn’t me.’ You want to create an atmosphere that’s timeless and won’t look dated quickly – this will help the house sell faster!
7. Forgetting Your Yard
Don’t forget about your yard and landscaping! Give buyers an eye-catching view they won’t be able to resist by sprucing up any outdoor areas with potted plants, furniture, etc. We often see homes that have been perfectly staged inside but then there's the outdoor area... it looks sad and uninviting. Don't let that happen to you! Your outdoor space should be just as inviting as your interiors. Place some potted plants around, add some furniture like chairs or benches, maybe even hang some lanterns for extra atmosphere – all these can make your yard look inviting and attractive.
8. Neglecting Maintenance Tasks
Don’t forget about all those small repairs that need to be done before you put your home on the market. A simple fresh coat of paint can make all the difference!
When it comes to selling your home, neglecting maintenance tasks and not making repairs is a major no. Sure, it's tempting to put off that pesky leaky faucet or broken cabinet handle for another day, but these little things can add up and make a big impact on potential buyers.
Put yourself in the shoes of a prospective buyer - if they walk into your home and see signs of disrepair, chances are they won't be as excited about purchasing from you. It's important to stay on top of all small repairs around your house and invest some time into regular maintenance- after all, a well-kept home looks much more appealing than one with obvious issues!
9. Last but not least… Forgetting About Storage Spaces!
The garage and storage closets can often be forgotten, but potential buyers will certainly take notice if they’re in order and looking great.
When staging these areas, start by clearing out all clutter and making sure everything has a place. Anything you're not keeping should be sold or donated - this is an especially great way to get rid of any old furniture or appliances. Once it's all cleared out and organized, spruce up the area with some new decorations and fresh paint. This will give buyers an idea of the potential of this space and make it look much more inviting than if everything was just thrown in a pile.
When staging your garage or storage closets, it's important to take into account what their purpose is and how they can be used most efficiently. For example, if you have a lot of tools or sports equipment, make sure there's room to store them properly - perhaps with some hooks on the walls for storing larger items. If you're trying to sell a home with lots of kids, ensure there are plenty of storage options for toys and games.
When it comes to staging your home for sale, the worst mistake you can make – by far – is cutting corners and not getting professional help. Sure, it may sound appealing to take on the project yourself, but trust me when I say that enlisting an experienced hand will be worth every penny.
A professional stager or real estate agent (hellooooo) has a knack for seeing things from a buyer’s point of view and can help you identify areas in your home that need to be addressed prior to listing. They know exactly how to optimize space and create the perfect ambiance that entices potential buyers – something only someone with trained eyes could do!
What’s more, they have access to resources that most people don’t. They can provide you with furniture, artwork and other accent pieces that bring a room to life and complete the look. Most of all, they understand buyers’ wants and needs better than anyone else. Don’t underestimate the value of having an experienced professional in your corner! The investment will be well worth it in the end – from creating a space that stands out against the competition to fetching a higher sale price for your home.
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