Staging vs. Decorating
While it may seem as though home staging is just redecorating, it’s actually much more! There’s an entire industry dedicated to properly preparing homes to appeal to a broad range of buyers. Let’s take a look at the differences between staging and decorating.
The purpose of decorating is to make your home comfortable for your family and reflective of who you are, while staging is modifying your home’s décor to spur a quick sale. Here are some of the key elements of a successful staging effort:
Bold paint can make a wonderfully-creative statement and give a room a personality all its own, which is great for homeowners in their daily lives. Yet, when staging a home, neutral colors make it much easier for the potential buyers to imagine themselves in your home.
Because opinions about paintings, photography and sculptures are very subjective, it’s wise to remove any potentially-controversial artwork when staging your home. Art that depicts or alludes to religion, politics, nudity, violence or other emotionally-charged topics should be tucked away before any showings.
As a homeowner, there are few limits on what constitutes an appropriate number of personal photos, but as a seller, it’s wise to keep images of family, friends and pets to a minimum.
Super important— eliminate clutter. Start by removing virtually everything and add back a few non-personal items, like plants or vases. Fewer, but larger, accessories is a good way to go.
On a dark and dreary night, it can be cozy to snuggle in with just a few accent lights or a fire. But when trying to sell a home, light is your friend. In addition to opening blinds and cleaning windows to let natural light shine in, having a few nice tabletop lamps at varying heights can bathe the rooms with inviting light.
While it’s fun to choose artsy carpet or patterned vinyl flooring for a home you plan to stay in for awhile, it’s not the best idea if you’re hoping to sell quickly. This doesn’t mean that you need to spend a fortune updating your home’s floors if you’re planning to move. However, if the flooring needs to be replaced, choose a neutral color or a subtle pattern.
Professional stagers recommend moving out some of your own furniture and renting a few appropriately-sized pieces. The goal is to have furniture that doesn’t overpower the room or look like it’s undersized. The room should feel spacious. It may not be configured they way you would typically live in the room – cozy. Rather, a professional stager will configure the room to maximize the space and provide plenty of room for open house visitors to move through your home.
Remember: You’re staging a vision, not selling your reality.